Blogs

The GDot: Still Simple, Cheap and Effective.

The GDot changed the soil moisture monitoring market. It was cheap, simple, visual and easy to use. And now it's more popular than ever. 

GDot in Veggies

What soil moisture sensor is right for you?

The choice of soil moisture monitoring sensors compatible with Plexus is still growing. That gives you more chances of getting the right sensor for you and your crop.

Acclima Soil Moisture Sensor - Installing and re-installing soil moisture sensors has never been so easy!

Every where you go, take your weather with you... On Green Brain

View your weather station data on Green Brain, so you can take your weather with you. Wherever you go. 

Junior weather station - View your data on Green Brain!

Want Frost Alerts? Get Frost Alerts!

Stay tucked up in bed on cold mornings - Plexus and Green Brain can now alert you of a frost event, so you don't need to head out unneccessarily.

A cold, frosty vineyard...

Air Temperature and Relative Humidity: On Plexus!

Open up a world of possibilities with a humble air temperature and relative humidity sensor. 

The latest addition to Plexus - Air temperature and relative humidity

How many irrigators monitor soil moisture?

This logbook is different to most. We don’t have any stories about the antics of MEA staff and our agent network. Nothing about new sensors, new MEA records broken, or a new Green Brain feature (although, we have done a few of all of those things).

In this logbook, we’d like your input.

Water Drops in Soil

Edinburgh Gardens

Plexus helps maintain the soil moisture beneath Edinburgh Gardens' historic Elm trees.

Plexus in Edinburgh Gardens

The Newest Green Brain Features...

Those of you who regularly log into Green Brain to view your soil moisture data may have noticed a new spanner icon appear recently on the user account details page.

Green Brain Manage Mode

GDot Recall

Reliability in soil moisture monitoring products is fundamental to creating certainty in the information they deliver.

GDot PR7 Recall

Plexus pluripotentii

We are happy to announce that Plexus is now compatible with most of the modern major brands of soil moisture profile probes!

Plexus using Senteks's Drill 'n Drop Probe

It's Official: MEA has South Australia's Top Professional Engineer

The 2015 Professional Engineer of the Year was deservedly awarded to Andrew Skinner, MEA’s Engineering Director.

SA's Engineer of the Year 2015

Rain Gauge Launch Offer

In recent times, many of our Plexus customers let us know that they would love to have rainfall automatically added to Green Brain, and so we listened.

Plexus Rain Gauge Launch Offer

What Our Customers are Saying...

Queensland Cane grower Con Christofides talks about his experience with MEA's GDot Soil Moisture Display.

Con Christofides

Christmas Closure Dates

MEA are closed from Monday 21st December, and officially reopen our doors on Monday the 4th January, 2016.

Christmas Closing 2015

'Plug-and-Play' Plexus

Sometimes extraordinary effort is required to make apparently small incremental changes to a product, such as MEA’s Plexus.

Jeff's Truck

Rainfall - anytime, anywhere

Green Brain can now give you rainfall records anywhere, anytime!

Rain 

Weather Stations in the Snow

MEA weather stations stretch across the breadth of Australia. Now they've made it into the mountains too.

Snow Height Sensor

Out and About August 2015

In this edition we go to Winetech, Griffith, AusVeg and the Strawberry Field Days - just to name a few! We also introduce Dominic, our newest addition to the Marketing team.

WineTech 2015

Green Avocados (and Brains!)

Tom Redfern shares his experience of using Green Brain to help manage irrigation on his avocado farms.

Tom Redfern

More Solar PV Farm Monitoring

Whether you dream of solar PV farms or solar-thermal farms, you need a world-class measurment system to track the solar energy inputs.

Solar monitoring system in Queensland

Full Stop to FullStops

Hard-working farmers have less time to manually read soil moisture devices, so we have been sorting out which sensors we stock and which ones no longer serve our markets.

FullStop

The MEA Museum

No matter how modern MEA technology becomes, understanding its essence allows a design engineer like me to wield it in new ways, to the benefit of those folk still out in the bush and needing measurements.

The Skinner Museum

Out and about May 2015

From spuds to grapes then home again. MEA staff take to the field to talk to farmers on the land or in their local regions.

Out and about May 2015

Stumpy and Springy - a Plexus Mount for Veggie Crops

Ground-hugging crops like strawberries and vegetables demand something different from their Plexus mounts; some method of getting that pesky field station out of the way of overhead machinery.

A Plexus mount for veggie crops

'Premium' Weather Stations

In the modern world, every darn thing gets tagged with superlatives, no matter how mediocre its genesis. So is a ‘premium’ MEA weather station really anything out of the ordinary?

MEA Premium Weather Station

Evap Pans - the good old way

Old ways sometimes die hard. Is the MEA automated evap pan the best way to measure evapotranspiration?

MEA Automated Evaporation Pan

Fun Below the Waves

Measurement engineers get to poke about in everyone else’s branch of science, and so wind up knowing a little about a lot.

A buoy supporting an MEA Thermistor String

Mitchell Agronomy's new face

MEA's best agents are self-made individuals.

Jeff Mitchell installing a Plexus tall mast

Frost in Grain Crops and the MEA 'why'

The nearest I can get to farmers is to be the bloke who builds their measurement tools.

Frost in grain crops

Speedier Green Braining

Green Brain now thinks almost as fast as you do.

Faster Green Brain

Plexus meets the Solanaceae family

Plexus gets down among the rows with the 'pasta sauce' vegetable family.

Plexus in tomatoes in Queensland

'Firesticks' and forest fuel

The recent fires across southern Australia were a brutal reminder of the danger posed by bushfires. How are those charged with managing our bushlands monitoring the risk?

Firestick Weather Station in Victoria

Somebody else's weather

In a changing climate hard-won experience needs to be assisted by the latest monitoring tools.

Somebody else's weather?

Bang! - one dead Plexus...

What happens when you apply several hundred million volts to a Plexus Field Station?

Lightining-damaged Plexus Field Station

The Royalla Solar Farm

The Royalla Solar Farm is a patch of sunshine for renewable energy.

Solar monitoring station

Climate monitoring across the nullarbor plains

Take a journey on the Indian-Pacific as we look at ARTC's new weather station network.

Weather Station at Barton

Running on the smell of an oily electron

What stimulates a pint-sized engineer's interest in elegant solutions that do much with little?

John Skinner at his workshop door

Lord Howe Island

The wind energy monitoring business might have died on the Australian mainland, but it’s alive and well on one of Australia’s offshore islands.

Lord Howe Island

Just Shake and Use!

What do the polders of Bangladesh, the shrimp farms of Vietnam, the rice paddies of the Philippines and the village wells of Indonesia all have in common with Australian irrigators?

Salt Sticks

Chameleons

Aussie farmers do it tough, but some farmers do it even tougher. What happens when you have to boil a design down to its bare bones to fit an African budget?

Chameleon


Hot Cows

Feedlot managers need to manage heat stress in their cattle. It's no good for the animals, and it's no good for the feedlot. Read on to find out more about our solution.

Feedlot Weather Station at Gunnee in New South Wales


Don't Frighten the Horses

Our Plexus radio units are designed to be highly visible. In most situations this is an asset, but not around easily-startled horses. So the Melbourne Racing Club decreed that if a Plexus network was to be installed at Caulfield Racecourse, it had better be discreet.

Plexus Field Station at Caulfield Racecourse

On Air

So I was sitting there at my desk feeling miserable and wondering whether the flu or the 57th Riverland Field Days would roll over me first, when Debbie came around to say that a nice lady from the Riverland Radio would like to interview me.

Microphone

Out and About October 2014

In the coming month there will be an MEA prescence at a number of exhibitions and field days. Read on to find out where you can meet up with the MEA team.

OutnAbout_01

A Very Corny Plexus Story

If grapevines and olive plantations share common dangers for Plexus radio systems operating within row crops, farmers under centre pivots face a different dilemma; how to get radio signals out from under the pivot arm?

Corn cob

Frosted!

Every year, for the last few decades, MEA has fielded a bunch of frantic phone calls from growers looking for ‘frost alarms’ through that narrow period between ‘bud-burst’ in early September through to the cessation of cold overnight temperatures that can kill off delicate buds and wreck the potential harvest.

Plexus temperature profile at Nuriootpa

The 'Springy Bracket' Fable

While the whiz-kids on the Plexus development team were sitting in air-conditioned comfort discussing packet structures and the Fresnel zone equations, Jack – MEA’s mechanical engineer – was sweating it out over in the MEA workshop hammering and straining, bending and cutting, welding and grinding bits of metal into scrap at a goodly rate.

Blacksmith

The Soil Moisture Tool for Precision Horticulture

The Delta T Devices WET Sensor has crucial applications in precision horticulture and soil science research and is usable in both soils and growing substrates. It is exceptional in its ability to measure pore water conductivity (ECp), the EC of the water that is available to the plant.

WET2 in impatiens

The Chasm Between Science and Engineering

Professor Gӧran Roos stated that “Science is the business of turning money into knowledge. Engineering is the business of turning that knowledge back into money”. Read on to discover the challenges involved in bridging the gap between science and engineering.

The clever country?

GDots are Now Even Better

We've sold thousands of GDots over the last six years. Now we've made this excellent value-for-money product just a little better.

GDot soil moisture display

Almond Orchards (Plexus Field Trials on a Heroic Scale)

Without the harsh light of reality, engineers trying to develop products for farmers can never get it right; something unexpected always jumps up and bites unproven gear in the bum under field conditions.

Plexus Tall Crop Mounting Solution

The Calibrated Milk Truck

How do farmers really use MEA gear?

This humbling tale from the bush taught us that we actually haven't go a clue...

Dotty Churn

Racecourse Manager's Conference

ThetaKits are a sure thing for racourse managers. Drop into Caulfield Racecourse to see what MEA has to offer to those who manage the track.

Racecourse

Green Brain Demo Site

Green Brain is the web application that our Plexus customers use to view soil moisture and temperature data. Viewable on any internet-connected computer and a wide range of smart devices, Green Brain is feature-packed while being simple to use. Read the story to find out how to access our demo site.

MEA's Green Brain

Seeking Solys at the Crossroads

The first step for any resource extraction is prospecting. If you hope to make energy from the sun, it's best to start by quantifying the available resource - in effect, solar prospecting. If you want your prospecting to be as accurate and reliable as possible, you need a world-class tracker fitted with 'you beaut' instrumentation. Read on to find out how we helped one of our clients become solar prospectors.

Solys 2 Tracker at Pt Augusta

MEA keeps growing!

On the 20th May, we welcomed Debbie into the MEA family.

Plexus GBT

Plexus now measures temperature!

First four months on the job

The MEA QLD Office has been operational since January 2014. It's been fast paced since Day 1, I have travelled the country side, visiting growers and distributors and passing by many likely looking fishing spots from Griffith to Walkamin and many places in between.

Oxford Landing

How do you test something as big as a radio network?

The short answer is that you find a ‘test bunny’ – a company with a ‘can-do’ approach to trying out new things and able to live with all the inconvenience and uncertainty of having engineers fiddling about all over their property.

Toodle-oo Tanya

For fourteen years and a few lucky extra months, MEA has been blessed with the loving presence of Tanya Liddell, the girl from Cummins in the middle of the wheat belt on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula. We loved her, she loved us, but best of all, our customers loved her too, because she was really great at making all those folk outside MEA feel loved as well.

MEA Turns 30!

It’s now thirty years since MEA was founded in 1984.

Instead of a mature business on our hands, Joe and I find ourselves with a ‘start-up’ instead.

How did this happen?

2014 FGT Annual May Conference

22nd to 25th May 2014 – FGT Annual May Conference - Launceston

The fabulous FGT conference is on the MEA hitlist again.

2014 Irrigation Australia National Conference and Exhibition

2nd to 6th June 2014 – Irrigation Australia National Conference and Exhibition - Gold Coast

Any one who is anyone will be there. Drop in and say hello!

MEA office opens in Queensland!

MEA goes National and opens our first office outside of South Australia!

News from the Coal Face

So I’m standing there, when some fella comes up to me and sticks his head into my space to demand (somewhat aggressively) how he could possibly know that MEA gear was any better than anybody else’s?

Caught on the back foot, with no patter to hand, I gave the first answer that came into my head: ‘Thirty years at the coal face!’

Living Walls for a Greener City

Plants growing up a building. Have we all gone mad?

RIP Prof Peter SCHWERDTFEGER

Reflections on the impact of a great man and a dear MEA friend!

The 44th Australian Cherry Industry Conference

6th to 8th August - Canberra

Growing cherries? Plexus can help you! Come and see how!

Clean Energy Week 2013

24 to 26th July 2013 – Clean Energy Week  - Brisbane

Plug into Nature. "Clean Energy Week is Australia's largest event for the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries". The perfect place for MEA

WineTech 2013

15 to 17th July – WineTech - Sydney

It happens only once every three years...WineTech! Australia’s premier showcase of wine technology, equipment and services.

So drop everything and get to the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre.

South East Field Days 2013

15 to 16th March - 35th South East Field Days - Lucindale, SA

It's time to take a break from your Lucerne enterprise....

SPAA Precision Ag EXPO 2013

8th February - SPAA Precision Ag EXPO - Nuriootpa, SA

One of the first Ag events of the year, and one well worth a look at!

UMS & What it means to be German!

Day one of my adventure began with a 6:15am flight out of Munich. 

The 14th Australian Almond Conference

26 to 28th October 2012 - Barossa Valley South Australia

Will you be at this year's 'must attend' event for anyone in the almond industry?!?! MEA will be!!!

Riverland Field Days 2012

19 to 20th September – Riverland Field Days - Bamera

Spring has rolled around and the Riverland Field days are here again.


DAFWA Weather Station Network

Weather watching in Western Australia just got a whole lot easier thanks to a 40 new weather stations that landed in July!

A GDot - The perfect Aussie souvenir!

Three of our GDots have departed the Southern Hemisphere and are now out there taking on the world!

Dowerin Field Days 2012

29th and 30th August 2012

We're heading back to Dowerin for our second year! We love our trips to WA and we're bringing over our brand new (not even launched yet) gadgets to wow you again!

Clean Energy Week

25th to 27th July 2012 - Sydney

Plug into Nature. "Clean Energy Week is Australia's largest event for the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries". The perfect place for MEA

The Ancient and the Modern

MEA's latest Weather Station network hits the dirt and leaves the mobile phone network behind. Read on to find out where they went and how they get the observations out.

Farm Innovation Technology Expo - Deniliquin

30th and 31st March 2012 – Farm Innovation Technology Expo

FITE is a two day outdoor event showcasing innovation and new technology for production agriculture. Irrigation efficiency is where MEA steps into the arena to stand out on its own.

Soil Moisture Probes: Finding the right one for your crop!

Monitoring your soil moisture is extremely beneficial to your farming practise but where do you start? There are so many types of soil moisture sensors on the market, which one is right for your crop?

Here are a few tips and pointers to get you started.

Soil Moisture Monitoring. Tensiometers – Bah!

There has to be a better way!!! Of course there is....

Tensiometers are inexpensive, simple to use and are great tools for helping with irrigation scheduling. BUT if you’ve ever used one, you know that to get the best from it, your tensiometer needs regular attention.

National Olive Industry Conference and Trade Exhibition

25 to 26th October – National Olive Industry Conference and Trade Exhibition

Good old Tim Brown is at it again! Barely back from trekking around half of Victoria he has packed up his trailer yet again and headed off to Wangaratta to mingle with Australia's finest Olive growers!

Drop in and say hello, grab your soil moisture monitoring brochures and make the move to upgrading your green thumb to a green brain. Your olive grove will thank you for it!

Getting the water wrong will cost you!!!

GWRDC Growers' Field Day: Practical Viticulture

11th November – GWRCD Growers' Field Day: Practical Viticulture

Wow Guys - This one is FREE!!! Get on down to the one of the nicest places on the planet and pick up some great information to give you a step up in the tough game of successfully growing grapes!

To round off a very busy year Tanya and Sonja will finally reunite for a road trip and 'Corolla' in for the event! The lure of sea, vines, sun and happy grape growers was just too great to resist.

You've missed it!!! But never fear, if you want to know more, there is plenty of useful information on our website:

Soil moisture monitoring - http://www.mea.com.au/soil-moisture-monitoring

Weather stations - http://www.mea.com.au/whatever-the-weather

The 13th Australian Almond Conference

26 to 28th October – The 13th Australian Almond Conference

If you're nuts about nuts, then you're probably heading to this year's Almond Conference at the picturesque McCraken Country Club in Victor Harbor. Between searching for Little Penguins, watching whales and bashing your way around the golf course, why not stop in and visit Tanya at the MEA stand.

She'll give you our key to Unlocking the Future... A Green Brain!

The 6th Australian Wine Industry Environment Conference & Exhibition

19 to 20th October – The 6th Australian Wine Industry Environment Conference & Exhibition

It’s time to get out of the paddocks and delve into the think tanks.

Tanya has hung up the boots, dusted off the trousers and is heading off the Adelaide Event & Exhibition Centre to hear about the latest insights into the wine industries future.

BerryQuest

21st October - BerryQuest

Trust Sonja to put her hand up for the Expo that involves Blueberries and Strawberries!

Karragullen Expo

15th October - Karragullen Expo

If you were one of the few that somehow missed out on catching up with Sonja at the Dowerin Field Days last month, you’ve caught a lucky reprieve.

Wandin Silvan Field Days

14 to 15th October - Wandin Silvan Fields Days

We’re working Mr Tim Brown rather hard this month. Elmore Field Days are barely done and dusted before he’s back re-packing the trailer and hitting the road again.

Elmore Field Days 2011

4 to 6th October - Elmore Fields Days

It’s time for MEA to hit Victoria, as we kick off October with a stand at the Elmore Field Days. Elmore has gained recognition as one of Australia's premier agricultural Field Days, and for many, is seen as a giant “supermarket” for all types of agricultural pursuits.

A Snail's Tale

A slow, slightly shocking meandering path!

One of the great things that I love about going to field days and expos is the random trivia that I collect whilst there.

Riverland Field Days 2011

14 to 15th September – Riverland Field Days

It's that time of year again when the Riverland flocks out to the Barmera to soak up the sun and explore the wares on display at the fantastic Field Days.

Yorke Peninsula Field Days

27 to 29th September – Yorke Peninsula Field Days

Abandoned by her trusty sidekick Sonja (who decided to swan around the Northern hemisphere for awhile under the guise of work) Tanya again heads up the marketing team at YP Field Days.

Reflections of a Wind Energy Pioneer

Sometimes I forget how long I’ve been carrying this dream of a renewable energy future…

MEA Weather Stations for Iraqi Farmers and Alpine Skiers

Since MEA built its first crude weather station 25 years ago for scientific research on the Chowilla Flood Plains in South Australia, we’ve lost track of where all the descendents of that original ‘ancestor’ weather station have wound up. There are literally hundreds of the little blighters out there and many of them have been banging away for over a decade. (We know this because they are occasionally returned to us to have the spiders removed from their comfortable homes in the sensor shelters!).

Dowerin Field Days 2011

24 to 25th August – Dowerin Field Days

Back West again to close out the month….Dowerin Field Days is one of Australia’s largest and most impressive agricultural expos. From tractors to cheeses, water tanks to stud rams, fencing products to soil moisture monitoring gear, the Dowerin Field Days has it all. So naturally, MEA had to be there.

GRDC update 2011

11th August – GRDC update – Barooga, NSW

Head back East and meet up with Tim Brown at the GRDC research update in Barooga. Tim’s a super fine chappy, not just highly knowledgeable but always willing to go the extra mile to help.

Truffle Conference

05 to 07th August – Truffle Conference – Manjimup, WA

Jump on a plane, head West and meet our fabulous agents, Brian and Steve Meyer, who will be set up in the Manjimup Town Hall on Saturday.

They’ll be there complete with a table full of soil moisture monitoring gear to wow and impress the esteemed Truffle Grower’s of Australia at their annual conference.

National Apple, Pear and Cherry Conference

01 to 05th August - National Apple, Pear and Cherry Conference – Adelaide, SA

To kick off the month, MEA will be making an appearance at the 2011National Cherry Conference and the National Apple & Pear Conference. Sonja will be soaking up the latest information from Industry and research institutes before heading up to Lenswood on Wednesday for the HortExpo.

Top