A new Protan Collar smart collar prototype is being developed by CSIRO’s digital arm, Data61, and Ceres Tag agtech.
The smart collar will allow pet owners to track their animals over long or short distances, and find them in case they get lost.
Pet tracking technology is not new at all. If you look on any site, you can find all kinds of trackers for both pets and hunting dogs.
Unfortunately, trackers that rely on either Bluetooth or Wi-Fi technology only work short distances, while long-range trackers that use a satellite navigation system such as GPS are often expensive, requiring a mobile plan. and must usually be recharged weekly.
Pets are safe even at a distance
The new smart collar Companion combines both Bluetooth and satellite technology to track animals in real time and send location information to the owner’s phone using an app, as well as alerts if the animal is wandering outside preset locations.
“The accompanying collar uses Data61’s Embedded Intelligence Platform (EIP) and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to determine if the pet is nearby, automatically switching to satellite communications when the collar is outside the home network.” , says Dr. Phil Valencia, Senior Research Engineer at CSIRO’s Data61.
“Many devices only use Bluetooth or Wi-Fi based tracking, which often involves a community of people listening on their phones and sharing their location data with a service to report the tracking device. This method is only suitable for short distances “.
If the animal remains within its virtual limit, the collar enters power saving mode, so its battery does not need frequent recharging. But if the animal wanders on, the collar switches to GPS mode.
In addition, the smart collar monitors the animal’s health and behavior, tracking any unusual activity and sending an alert if something seems wrong.
“Owners will get valuable information about how the pet behaved during the day, the system identifying whether the animal’s activity is above or below its typical levels and whether it was significantly different at some point in the day,” says Valencia.