MSU Professor Younsuk Dong Recognized by MSU Extension with the 2023 Innovative Technology Award Innovative for his LOCOMOS Technology

East Lansing, MI – Younsuk Dong, an assistant professor and Extension specialist at Michigan State University’s Department of Biosystem and Agricultural Engineering, has been recognized by MSU Extension with the 2023 Innovative Technology Award for his LOCOMOS technology.  

LOCOMOS (Low-Cost Monitoring System) uses affordable sensors and monitoring tools to provide real-time data on soil moisture levels, allowing farmers to determine optimal irrigation schedules and amounts helping farmers to conserve water while maximizing yields.  

Dong has partnered with federal and state agencies, commodity groups, and other stakeholders to conduct on-farm research with the technology and has already installed over 80 LOCOMOS systems on farms across Michigan.   

“LOCOMOS allows farmers to practice data-driven irrigation management to reduce water waste,” said Dong. “The technology also helps time pesticide and fungicide applications more precisely to improve plant health.”  

In 2022 alone, Dong used LOCOMOS in on-farm consultations and demonstrations involving over 50,000 acres and has helped farmers reduce water use by up nearly 15 billion gallons while maintaining yields.   

Dong’s dedication to creating practical solutions for farmers has catalyzed rapid adoption of LOCOMOS in Michigan. His work highlights how emerging technologies can help the agricultural sector conserve resources while remaining productive and profitable. To read more about Younsuk Dong’s work, click HERE.  

About the Innovative Technology Award 

The Innovative Technology Award recognizes an individual or team that has demonstrated creative uses of technology through one or more of the following ways: creative program delivery using innovative practices or tools, responsiveness in MSU’s eXtension Ask an Expert Service, and use of technology in educational programming resulting in documented positive response by participants. 

About the MSU Innovation Center: 

The MSU Innovation Center is dedicated to fostering innovation, research commercialization, and entrepreneurial activities from the research and discovery happening across our campus every day. We act as the primary interface for researchers aiming to see their research applied to solving real-world problems and making the world a better place to live. We aim to empower faculty, researchers, and students within our community of scholars by providing them with the knowledge, skills, and opportunities to bring their discoveries to the forefront. Through strategic collaborations with the private sector, we aim to amplify the impact of faculty research and drive economic growth while positively impacting society. We foster mutually beneficial, long-term relationships with the private sector through corporate-sponsored research collaborations, technology licensing discussions, and support for faculty entrepreneurs to support the establishment of startup companies.   

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