The maple syrup season lasts only six weeks during which time sugar makers must walk their tap lines continuously to check for leaks. These leaks if not repaired cause loss of valuable syrup.
Jason Gagne of Swanton and Doug Thompson of Sault St. Marie Ontario have developed a new computerized technology that monitors tap lines continuously and provides up to the minute data on a computer or smartphone. The system uses a series of boxes containing sensors placed at intervals in the woods that monitor tap lines and record the data in real time. The boxes are powered by solar panels and monitor the pressure in up to six tap lines .
The system is being used by sugar maker Donnie Richards of Meadowbrook Maple Syrup. He estimates that the new electronic monitoring system will increase his syrup production by 5%.