N Tech Industries and the Green Seeker

Traditional industrial agriculture relies on large scale application of pesticides that work hand in hand with genetically modified crops. Researchers at Oklahoma State University have developed a soil sensing mechanism that deploys site-specific amounts of chemicals.

To quote the short film:

This is precision agriculture at it’s best. The environment is spared unnecessary spraying of chemicals. The savings in fertilizer translate into cheaper food at the grocery store. And farmers benefit from lower operating costs. [1:27 – 1:39]

This is a version of a Robot Farm – as the title of the film implies – one which the growBot project seeks to develop an alternative to.

More info at the GreenSeeker home.

Bolivian Students Prototype Agribot

Bolivian_students

Students in Bolivia prototyped a robot they designed to help indigenous farmers moderate their soil chemicals. Reports the University of New Mexico:

Sergio ValencÍa Cordova, Rodrigo López and Sergio Saavedra from the Universidad Privada Boliviana presented their automated agricultural robot as part of the student competition at the Ibero-American Science and Technology Education Consortium (ISTEC) conference taking place on campus this week.

The robot is a prototype that could be used to plot map points on a field, and drill into soft soil to examine what nutrients need to be added for efficient agriculture. The students say the government could buy the robots for villages around the country and local farmers could borrow the robots to tell them exactly how much nitrogen or potassium should be added to support a particular crop.

Sorry for the tiny photo.

Autonomous Agriculture Robots via Fuji

Autonomous Agriculture Robot

In the field of giant autonomous robotics designed for agriculture, we have

Robots now enter the agriculture industry, too. First the award-winning rice-transplanting robot, now this: Major Japanese conglomerate Fuji Heavy Industries has developed an agricultural robot that can tend fields autonomously.

The company says the robot is the first of its kind. It runs on gas and is 2m long, 60cm wide and 1m high. It emits and receives laser signals to orient itself, gauging the distance to special reflective plates (which are placed at regular intervals of about 10 meters).

Fuji Heavy says the robot can grow fruit and vegetables independently, and it can even be used inside greenhouses. The company plans to start selling the machine next fiscal year for around $100,000.
Via Crunchgear.com