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Greenhouse Controller


This Reference Design was created to provide remote monitoring and control of an industrial greenhouse.

The controller continuously monitors environmental conditions in the grow house. A set of relays interfaces with the greenhouse systems, providing cloud-based control.


Business Use Case

Optimal temperature and lighting levels vary by plant/crop. Automating the grow lights and ventilation system in your greenhouse unlocks the ability to remotely tailor growing conditions for improved yields.

This Reference Design includes a temperature/pressure/humidity sensor for automated ventilation control and a light sensor for automated grow light operation. A pair of mains-rated relays interface with existing infrastructure, securely connecting those systems to Golioth.

Blog post

Read about the release of this reference design in the Greenhouse Controller blog post.

How we built it

Modular Hardware

The reference design hardware is built using the Golioth Aludel Mini prototyping platform, which integrates an Adafruit Feather-compatible processor module and two MikroE Click sensor boards into a compact enclosure. It also includes the Ostentus front panel that features an ePaper display for sensor readings, back-lit LED indicators, and capacitive touch buttons. We designed this platform to demonstrate how it’s possible to quickly develop a proof-of-concept using widely available off-the-shelf modules. You'll find step-by-step instructions below showing how you can build a similar prototype yourself using widely-available development boards from our partners.

For low-power cellular connectivity, we’re using the same SparkFun nRF9160 Thing Plus module used in other Golioth reference designs. This feather-compatible module integrates the Nordic nRF9160 System-in-Package (SiP), featuring an Arm Cortex-M33 application processor, an integrated LTE modem, and a GNSS receiver for cellular-based location-tracking. The nRF9160 is fully supported in Zephyr, and has the highest level of support in the Golioth platform (Continuously Verified).

This reference design integrates two off-the-shelf MikroE Click sensor boards and one additional sensor breakout board:

  1. MikroE Weather Click board with a Bosch BME280 humidity (+temperature/pressure) sensor
  2. MikroE Relay Click board with two OMRON G6D-1A-ASI miniature mechanical relays
  3. Adafruit APDS-9960 breakout board board with a Broadcom APDS-9960 digital RGB, Ambient light, and proximity sensor

Device Photos

Hardware Block Diagram

Greenhouse Block Diagram

Open-source Firmware

The firmware source code and pre-built firmware images for this reference design are available on GitHub under a permissive Apache-2.0 license.


The Greenhouse Controller firmware is based on the Golioth Reference Design Template. Changes from the upstream template are periodically pulled into new releases of this firmware. Check out the firmware CHANGELOG for a detailed list of changes included in each release.

Data Visualization

Greenhouse Controller Dashboard

The Grafana dashboard connects to the Golioth REST API to access data from the Greenhouse controller. Light intensity, temperature, pressure, and humidity from the greenhouse are all graphed. The current settings for automatic control and thresholds are shown, as well as the current state of the grow light and ventilation controls.

Next steps

Build it yourself

We provide follow-along guides showing how to build this reference design using widely available off-the-shelf development boards from our partners. We call this Follow-Along Hardware, and we think it's one of the quickest and easiest ways to get started building an IoT proof-of-concept with Golioth.

You will learn how to assemble the hardware, flash a pre-built firmware image onto the device, and connect to the Golioth cloud in minutes. The follow-along hardware runs the same open-source firmware as the custom Golioth hardware described above, and we provide instructions on how to build it yourself if you want to make changes for your specific application.

To get started, choose one of the follow-along guides below:

Request a demo

This Greenhouse Controller reference design is a great starting point for building your own proof-of-concept. The next step is to integrate the components used in the follow-along hardware into your own custom hardware implementation and build a custom firmware image that connects your device to the Golioth Cloud.

Schedule a demo!

If you would like a demo of this reference design, please contact [email protected].

This reference design is a great place to start for your own proof of concept. The next step is to take the various development boards included here and create a custom hardware implementation. This includes designing a custom PCB and choosing a case that fits your needs in the field.