Why is grain monitoring important?

The stored grain is a practically unlimited source of food for all kinds of bugs, and the grain must be protected best possible against especially insects and fungus. 3 things play a major role for the best protection: the grain temperature and grain moisture; and especially the aeration control.Grain monitoring is very important as this is the only way to know the grain condition. The condition can be measured in temperature, moisture and CO2 level inside the silo.

iGRAIN products specifically target to provide you with full knowledge of your stored grain. The purpose is really to protect the value of the grain.

Biologic Activity

What is “unwanted biologic activity” in the grain and how can it be controlled?

Biologic activity comes from all types of protozoa; insects, fungus, mites, bacteria, yeast etc. The most serious problem causing the biggest losses worldwide comes from insects and fungus. Quite often a so-called hotspot is started by insects and later it develops into a fungus because the respiration of the insects generate humidity and therefore provides moisture to start the fungus culture. The best way to control the biologic activity is via correct aeration control. It is a complex issue and iGRAIN is the first company to have developed a fully automatic aeration control system.

What is fungus?

A fungus is any member of the group of eukaryotic organisms that includes microorganisms such as yeasts and molds, as well as the more familiar mushrooms. These organisms are classified as a kingdom, fungi, which is separate from the other eukaryotic life kingdoms of plants and insects.

What is a hotspot?

A hot spot is a localized high temperature zone in stored grain and is a consequence of escalation microbiologic activity. Historically temperature sensing in stored grain was supposed to identify such hotspots. In those early days of grain monitoring it was the only technology available for this but it has shown that it is not the best way to identify unwanted biologic activity.

Which is the best way to detect spoilage (fungus and weevil attack)?

The fastest way to detect spoilage at an early stage is to use an iGRAIN CO2 sniffer. CO2 is a gas and therefore it migrates through the grain mass very quickly, which means that a hot spot will be detected much faster than by temperature monitoring … and with only one sensor.

Safe Monitoring of Stored Crops

What is HACCP?

HACCP stands for Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points. This is a preventative food safety system in which every step in the manufacture, storage and distribution of a food product is scientifically analyzed for microbiological, physical and chemical hazards. Potential hazards are therefore identified and appropriate decision making is possible.

What does ATEX or EX mean?

The ATEX directive consists of two EU directives describing what equipment and work space is allowed in an environment with an explosive atmosphere. EX rated equipment refers to equipment that has been classified as safe for use in hazardous areas which are often referred to as “EX areas.” Non-EX equipment may emit small sparks or reach high temperatures that can ignite in hazardous areas causing explosions or fires.

Tailoring your iGRAIN System to your Needs

Why should I choose iGRAIN?

iGRAIN is the most innovative brand within the post-harvest sector for stored grain monitoring systems.

How many cables do I need in my silo? The number of cables to be used for your silo depends on the diameter. Please contact iGRAIN support on info@i-grain.net to get more information.

What does first, second and third ring mean?

Depending on the silo diameter the temperature cables must be positioned in a way which provide optimal monitoring in the silo. This means that the cables may be mounted in different rings. You may mount them in 1, 2 or 3 rings in order to keep the same distance between the sensor cables and thus optimizing the measurement capability of the equipment. Follow our instruction manual.

Can I have a monitoring system in my stirring silo?

iGRAIN has developed sensor probes to be used in a stirring silo. By using these sensor probes together with the special iGRAIN stirring silo software you can monitor your stirring silo.

Is it possible to monitor all kind of silos/bins/flat storages?

With iGRAIN monitoring systems you can monitor any kind of silos/bins/flat storage

iGRAIN Temperature Sensor Cables

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN temperature cable?

There are several suppliers of reasonably good temperature monitoring cables. The reason for this is actually, that the founders of iGRAIN have inspired many competitors to copy the iGRAIN technology. Having said that, the most important is that temperature cable uses digital and calibration free sensors that do not drift over time. The sensors must also be durable in the most challenging silo environments. Temperature cables are the traditional method of monitoring crops in steel bins and concrete silos and also in flat storage facilities. Do not forget that many scientists now consider temperature monitoring of stored grain much less important than CO2 monitoring.

iGRAIN Sensor Lance

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN sensor lance?

iGRAIN sensor lance uses digital calibration free sensors that do not suffer from drift in accuracy over time. The iGRAIN sensor lance also comes in a version that measure both grain moisture and temperature. The iGRAIN Sensor Lance is suitable for all types of flat stores and can also be used to measure the top layer in other storage bins .The iGRAIN sensor lance may also be used to check commodities stored in bags.

How can I monitor stored grain in my flat storage?

Both by utilizing iGRAIN temperature and moisture cables and lances you can permanently monitor your flat stores.

iGRAIN Moisture Sensor Cable

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN moisture sensor cable?

The moisture sensor cable will usually include a number of iGRAIN moisture sensors to monitor grain moisture and one iGRAIN headspace humidity sensor positioned just under the silo roof to monitor headspace humidity. The iGRAIN moisture sensors provide an ideal way to monitor grain moisture in your bins. The sensors monitor continuously without any need to take samples for manual tests. The user only needs to enter the stored commodity type in the software, and the calculated grain moisture can be visualized via trend curves that show moisture fluctuations over time. The ideal number of moisture sensors on one moisture sensor cable varies depending on application. Often two moisture sensors are positioned in the grain and one headspace humidity sensor is positioned just under the roof. For some applications it can be sufficient to use one moisture sensor or just one headspace humidity sensor.

How do I measure moisture in grain?

Measurement of moisture in grain can be done by using iGRAIN moisture cables. When using iGRAIN moisture cables you can measure moisture in the grain and head space. The relative humidity can be calculated into grain moisture the EMC curve (Equilibrium Moisture Concentration). Then you would know exactly when to start aeration.

iGRAIN Sniffer – Infestation Sensor

What is the advantage of an iGRAIN Sniffer/CO2 monitoring?

The iGRAIN SNIFFER is an advanced CO2 sensor system that will detect stored grain spoilage at an early stage. It is superior to temperature monitoring and will find a hot-spot before temperature monitoring. It is based on detecting any unwanted biologic activity from insects, fungus etc. in the stored grain. Because CO2 is a gas it will migrate through the grain mass so only one sensor is required in each bin or storage cell. Because the generation of CO2 from unwanted biologic activity is rather small, and because the ambient level of CO2 changes, a sophisticated technology is detecting the rise in CO2 levels immediately and alerts about the biologic activity.

What is a portable sniffer?

An iGRAIN portable sniffer is a mobile CO2 detector with which you can detect spoilage in grain by monitoring the level of CO2 in the silo. Normally this is recommended for smaller silos.

iGRAIN Automatic Aeration Control

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN Automated Aeration Control?

Most aeration systems sold commercially are only thermostat controls. iGRAIN Automated Aeration Control is more than just a thermostat control because our system also takes stored crop type and outside relative humidity into account when determining when it is a good idea to start or stop aeration fans. Correct aeration control is important because incorrect aeration will spoil the stored grain by either creating condensation zones that lead to fungus attack or drying out the grain unnecessarily and thereby loosing weight.

What is aeration?

Aeration control is the single most important issue in grain storage. It is the only operational parameter after storing the grain in silos. The aim of good automated aeration control is to ensure the correct grain moisture concentration (EMC – Equilibrium Moisture Concentration). The EMC is depended on the commodity.

What is EMC?

EMC stands for Equilibrium Moisture Concentration. You use the EMC curve to calculate the relative humidity into grain moisture. iGRAIN Aeration Control is based on EMC (Equilibrium Moisture Concentration). Aeration control must take the total grain condition into account. TRUE AERATION CONTROL, iGRAIN EMC Aeration control work as follows. The entire grain mass condition is taken into account. Aeration control is based on targeting a specific grain temperature and specific grain moisture, see also “What is aeration?”.

How do I start my aeration system?

Depending on your facility, aeration control can be managed either manually, semi-automatically or full-automatically. iGRAIN aeration is full-automatic. Setting up the aeration control depends on different factors. Aeration Control settings depends on different climate zone and location. Our Online Service can assist you with the adjustment of correct Aeration Control.

iGRAIN Smart APP – On Top of Things

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN Smart APP – on top of things?

The iGRAIN Smart APP gives an easy to understand overview of the stored crops on a smartphone or tablet. The app overview is user friendly and will only show info that is useful for the grain manager. For example, the app will tell what silo in the system has the worst storage condition. Using the technology in this app the grain manager will quickly be able to get an overview and can decide what silo to sell or treat first.

How does the HACCP module work?

The iGRAIN HACCP module provides facilities to integrate with host quality control systems. This makes monitoring and reporting automatic and decision making easy. Also look at “What is HACCP”.

iGRAIN All-In-One Sensor Cable

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN All-In-One Sensor Cable?

The All-In-One Sensor cable is a temperature sensor cable that is equipped with additional moisture sensors. When using a combined cable, the pull strength and installation costs are reduced compared to installing both a temperature sensor cable and a moisture sensor cable.

iGRAIN Silo Head Space Humidity Sensor – Ventilation Control

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN Silo Head Space Humidity Sensor?

The iGRAIN Head Space Humidity sensor monitors the headspace humidity continuously. Headspace humidity levels are especially important to monitor in environments where there is risk of condensation on the inside of the roof. The readings are used by iGRAIN Aeration Control to control the headspace fans and can thereby avoid dangerous headspace condensation. If headspace condensation gets out of control, the upper layer of grain will get wet and fungus growth and crust building will commence.

iGRAIN Fire Warning Sensor

What is the advantage of iGRAIN Fire Warning Sensors?

The iGRAIN Fire Warning Sensor has the advantage that it detects potential risk before a fire starts. The main objective is to detect smoldering from self-heating of the grain prior to ignition. CO2 is the main byproduct of any smoldering reaction type and is therefore the preferred gas to determine a smoldering process in silo environments. The iGRAIN Fire Warning Sensor uses a redundancy principle for the electrical connections of the system which ensures that the system will give a warning even if the sensor or wire connection is damaged for example from a fire.

How do I detect fire in the silo?

If a fire occurs the development of CO2 increases rapidly, therefore you can easily register a fire by using a CO2 sensor, i.e. you use an iGRAIN fire detector sensor.

iGRAIN Weather Station

What is the advantage of iGRAIN Weather Station?

The purpose of the weather station is to measure the ambient moisture and temperature. With the iGRAIN weather station you get a fast response of the weather monitoring for your aeration control. The ambient air is often the only thing that can be used to cool and ventilate your crops. Therefore, a reliable measurement of the weather conditions is the key to performing correct aeration control without over drying or wetting your grain.

Where is the best place to install the weather station?

The iGRAIN weather station is developed to suit all weather conditions. It is designed for long durability even under harsh conditions such as long and cold winters, hot and warm tropical conditions and desert-like conditions. It can thus be mounted in any silo plant at a suitable location. However, the most preferred position is at a high point in the shade of the silo facility.

iGRAIN Hand Instrument – Temperature and Moisture Monitoring

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN Hand Instrument?

The iGRAIN Hand Instrument is used for applications where there is no need for continuous monitoring of the stored crops. The temperature reading will then only be recorded each time a manual reading is collected by connecting the hand instrument to the cable connector. The data can still be visualized in accompanying software if included.

Can I get portable monitoring systems?

Yes, you can get an iGRAIN handheld reader to monitor temperature and moisture on the site.

How can I take out data from my handheld reader?

The handheld reader models 2500 and 3000 are delivered with a USB data cable. Use the cable to transfer all data from the device to your PC.

iGRAIN PLC/SCADA Integration Solutions

What is the advantage of the iGRAIN PLC/SCADA Integration Solutions?

The iGRAIN PLC/SCADA Integration Solutions enable the end user to collect the intelligent data from our system and transfer it to the PLC/SCADA system used on site. Information such as recommended off /on status of fans is transferred and enables the PLC to control the fans.

iGRAIN Inventory Management

What is the advantage of iGRAIN inventory management?

By using the iGRAIN inventory management software, which is a unique part to the iGRAIN Dash Board Software platform, you have continuous knowledge about your facility – grain level and grain condition in each silo.

How accurate is the level monitoring with the iGRAIN Radar unit?

The accuracy by using the iGRAIN Radar Unit is +/-10 mm. The Radar emits narrow microwave pulses that are transmitted downwards by the emitter. The radar reflection from the surface reveals the distance to the surface. The grain silo accuracy is approx. 1-2% (total volume) depending on silo dimensions.

How do I monitor the grain level in the bin?

iGRAIN offers two different ways of level measurement. Either by the Radar Unit (a high precision radar) or you may also use temperature sensors to measure the level. However, it depends on the number of cables that you have in your silo. Precision can therefore vary from 0-2m. The iGRAIN INVENTORY MANAGER SOFTWARE provides reliable information about level, volume and grain weight. It also records all movements in and out of each bin. The system displays level, volume and weight. Grain density can be set by the user for higher accuracy or be chosen from the iGRAIN default density list.

iGRAIN Network System (Master Hub and Sub Hub)

What is the advantage of iGRAIN Network System?

The iGRAIN network system consists of electronical boxes called Master Hubs and Sub Hubs. The advantage of the network is that all communication can be collected to the iGRAIN Master Hub and then be collected by the control unit (PC, PLC, SCADA)

What is a Master Hub and when do you need one?

The Master Hub is required for all PC, PLC and SCADA based systems that include monitoring with either temperature sensor cables or moisture sensor cables. The Master Hub transfers temperature and moisture sensor data from the Sub Hubs and transfers the data to the iGRAIN system pc. This device can handle systems with up to 1000 temperature sensors. For larger systems any number of Master Hubs can be connected to accompany silo facilities of any size.

What is a Sub Hub and when do you need one?

A Sub Hub is required for systems that include more than 4 temperature (or moisture) sensor cables. The Sub Hub transfers temperature and moisture sensor data from the sensors to the Master Hub. Each Sub Hub can connect up to 6 temperature sensor cables or up to 5 moisture sensor cables. You can connect several Sub Hubs to one system.

What are the maximum distances for iGRAIN control boxes?

We recommend a distance of max. 50 meters between the control boxes to avoid any noise to interfere with the monitoring system.

What does the display on the Master Hub show?

The Master Hub has a build in display that continuously shows the number of Sub Hubs, sensor cables and sensors with which it communicates.

How do I change the addresses on the control boxes?

When the Sub Hubs are installed at the site each Sub Hub has an address and it should correspond to the address configured in the iGRAIN Dash Board. If you for some reason need to change the Sub Hub address you must go to the control box and manually change it. Take of the lid and turn the ID switch to the preferred address. You have the same possibility on the Master Hub in case you add another or replace the Master Hub.

How tight may I fasten the lid of the electronic control boxes?

The lids of the electronic boxes should only be tightened until the seal closes tightly. Do not tighten so much that the seal breaks, because then the boxes become leaky. As good practice you must place a rain shield over the boxes to protect them from heavy rain showers and avoid destroying the PCB that may result in short cuts.

iGRAIN Dash Board Manager Software

What is the advantage of the iGRAN Dash Board Manager Software?

Utilizing the iGRAIN Dash-Board Manager you get a comprehensive plant status overview including grain temperature, grain moisture, weather data, grain level, grain volume, grain weight, aeration fan (on/off status), roof exhaust fan (on/off status), spoilage indication (iGRAIN sniffer CO2 concentration).

How can I change the commodity in the software?

The iGRAIN monitoring system is pre-configured with different types of commodities. You may change it in the iGRAIN Dash Board Manager in “Administration – Cell”. Do not hesitate to contact iGRAIN Online Center for assistance – service@i-grain.net

How often do I get a report from the iGRAIN software?

As a standard you get the iGRAIN manager report once a week (or once a month). It gives you an easy overview of changes in grain condition in every single storage cell.

When will I get an alarm from my system?

Using the alarm settings you can decide by yourself when you want to have an alarm from the system. It can either derive from a too high temperature or high concentration of CO2. You may also have an alarm icon, if the systems do not work properly, also see: “How do I recognize if I do not receive data from the iGRAIN software?”

What does the colors in the plant management (Dashboard) mean?

There are five colors in the iGRAIN management dashboard. Light gray means silo is empty. Blue, green, yellow and red give you the temperature status. Blue shows status too cold. Green means proper temperature, yellow means warm and red means too hot. Be aware that the sun in some regions may heat the cells during day time (when the sun sets the temperature may decline again).

How do I recognize if I do not receive data from the iGRAIN software?

The iGRAIN Dash Board manager provides a plant overview, where you can monitor your facility. If no data is received you may see it as a silo with a dark grey color (Light grey means that the silo is empty).  You can also see notification about the Service and System status of your facility.


What is the advantage of the use of ozone?

Ozone is a strong oxidizer and the effect is dependent on e.g. the ozone concentration, the exposure time and other parameters. The effect of Ozone has been known for many years and ozone plays a major role in many applications in other industries, of which the most important is water treatment- to reduce BOD (Biologic Oxygen Demand) in waste water. Also, sanitization in the food especially mill processing industry eliminating bad flavors and odors.

When do I need an ozone generator (Toxi-Scrub)?

If you want to remove a bad odor or certain types of dirt, you may use an ozone generator. Toxi-Scrub is a special ozone generator developed by Eye-Grain, which can be used for changing contaminated grain into animal food. It eliminates 100% of harmful biological activity in grain, including insects, fungus, mites etc. It can also eliminate mycotoxins.


What is the advantage of the use of chilling?

When you need a controlled cooling of your grain you need a chiller (chilling machine). Usually a chiller will be a cooling solution in tropical climates. If grain is chilled to a temperature below 16° C unwanted biologic activity will be stalled, and bug procreation will stop. This is the reason why chilling has become so popular. Depending on the specific application grain stores normally choose to chill their stored grain to temperatures between 8°C and 16°C. – in some cases much lower.

Installation of iGRAIN Products

How do I install my monitoring system?

All systems provided by iGRAIN come with a very in-depth installation manual. You must follow this manual. For further questions you may contact iGRAIN Online Center: service@i-grain.net

How do I mount a sensor cable?

Cables can either be installed with hooks on rafters or on mounting plates directly on the silo roof. When installing the system while erecting the silo, hooks are preferred. Roof mount plates are used for existing silos and iGRAIN moisture cables and iGRAIN sniffer cables as they can be removed when cleaning the silo. All systems provided by iGRAIN come with a very in-depth installation manual. You must follow this manual. For further questions you may contact iGRAIN Online Center: service@i-grain.net

Where do I find the wiring diagram?

You will always find the wiring diagram in your iGRAIN installation manual.

How do I make sure that my cabling is correct?

The best way to check your cabling is to use the installation manual, which was supplied together with the delivery of your monitoring equipment. In case of any further questions please contact: service@i-grain.net

How can I avoid or reduce the noise in my system?

To avoid or reduce the noise in your system, you must be cautious about the cabling. Please follow the installation manual carefully as it gives you a very clear understanding of good cabling practices.

How do I integrate with PLC/SCADA solutions?

We have different solutions to integrate with PLC and SCADA. One method is to use the PLC output that consist of an ASCII-string from a RS-485 comport. Another way is to access a buffer SQL database via scripting.

What is good installation practice of CAT 5e cable?

CAT 5e is an Ethernet cable, where cable pairs are twisted to minimize the noise and interference on the signals transmitted. CAT 5e cables must therefore be handled according to installation guidelines regarding Ethernet cables.

Where do I find the color codes for the CAT 5e cables?

CAT 5e is an Ethernet cable and the color codes can be found in our installation manual.

Maintenance of iGRAIN systems

What should I do with the cables when cleaning my silo?

iGRAIN products are made to last for a long time if they are maintained properly. We therefore recommend that you remove the cables when cleaning the silo.

iGRAIN service

How can I get on-site service?

You can get a quote for on-site service for you iGRAIN system by sending a request via mail to the online service center service@i-grain.net.

How can I get online support?

You can get online support from the iGRAIN online service center: service@i-grain.net

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