New T-L Irrigation Co. Edge Controller Offers Fully Remote Pivot Operation And More

Remote operation enables moving the controller to the end tower for boosted accuracy and reliability

Published online: Sep 21, 2023 New Products
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Hastings, Nebraska — The new fully remote Edge Controller from T-L Irrigation Co., gives irrigators the power to monitor and control pivot operations any time, any place. With no physical control panel needed at the pivot point, the controller itself is strategically installed on the end tower increasing accuracy and reliability of pivot function. 

“Remote telemetry allows the operator to monitor and control the pivot from any connected device anywhere in the world,” says Neal Schlautman, T-L Irrigation Co. engineering manager. “Changing the controller location means all sensor input and commands are centralized to where the work takes place—at the end of the pivot.”

This move puts the pivot water pressure sensor at the end tower, too. This is optimal, Schlautman says, as it ensures the entire system is reaching the necessary water pressure for consistent, uniform application. The water pressure sensor is wired directly into the Edge Controller as are sensors and control valves for other critical functions like direction control, GPS position, and end tower speed—streamlining the overall wiring system.  

Each sensor and control function requires its own wire. When a controller is installed at the pivot point, each wire—and the information it carries—must travel through the collector ring and the length of the pivot to the end tower. With the Edge Controller, the potentially half-mile long span cable is reduced to just a few feet. Only 24-volt DC power is required in the span cable.

“The design increases the overall reliability of the system. Moving the controller to the end tower dramatically reduces the distance the sometimes sensitive low-voltage signals travel and cuts out areas where issues can occur,” Schlautman says. 

The Edge Controller provides closed-loop speed control. Real-time data is constantly incoming, and adjustments are being made right at the end tower to provide precise pivot speed. When combined with the steady movement of T-L Irrigation hydrostatic drives, this system provides exceptionally even, precise application—all controlled and monitored remotely.

Still too many wires? The Edge Solar option can eliminate the span cable and collector ring otherwise needed to provide 24-volt DC power to the controller, too. Solar panels are installed next to the Edge Controller at the end tower, allowing for fully wireless. Edge Solar can provide extra peace of mind for those in areas where span cable theft is a concern. 

“Through remote operation, increased accuracy, and improved reliability, the Edge Controller allows irrigators to be a better steward of their water, crops, and time,” Schlautman says.

The Edge Controller and the Edge Solar Option are available for new systems and can be easily retrofitted to existing systems. 

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