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ISU Wins $1M Grant for Soil Sensor Research

AMES, Iowa (AP) -- An Iowa State University research team has won $1 million grant to develop wireless sensors that could help farmers track soil data including nitrate levels and soil moisture.
   The National Science Foundation announced grant recipients on Tuesday.
   The money will fund research by a team headed by Ratnesh Kumar, an Iowa State professor of electrical and computer engineering.
   The sensors are designed to be buried about a foot deep in a grid pattern to relay data to a central computer that would record information for researchers or farmers.
   The sensors could help researchers understand how water moves through a field, assisting in the development of better models to predict crop growth and yield.
   And they could help them understand the carbon and nitrogen cycles within soils.
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