Accuracy of GPS: why does it matter in farming?

The days when farmers had to rely on paper maps and physical markers when conducting operations in their fields are long gone. Today, many agriculture professionals use GPS to navigate their fields and many farms have even started implementing advanced precision farming technologies in their operations. However, it’s key to remember that not all GPS technologies and devices are created equal. In this article, we will discuss the accuracy of GPS and explain why it’s important in the agriculture field.

Accuracy of GPS explained

Different GPS devices can provide different levels of accuracy and precision depending on the type of technology used to conduct measurements, the design of the receiver, etc. Generally, the accuracy range of measurements provided by GPS devices can range from as much as 100 meters to as little as 1 centimeter. Of course, when we’re talking about agriculture, it’s best to use the highest accuracy of GPS possible to achieve the best results.

Why is high GPS accuracy important in farming?

Accurate GPS measurements can help farmers achieve numerous goals. This includes:
    • Minimizing overlaps and missed sports when seeding, applying chemicals, tilling, and carrying out other operations.
    • Giving the farmer the ability to work in low visibility conditions regardless of the weather and time of day.
    • Carrying out the collection of accurate data regarding soil parameters, harvests, etc.
    • Eliminating overspraying.
    • Tracking crop yields in different sections of the fields.

How to achieve high accuracy of GPS in agriculture?

There are many GPS solutions tailored specifically to farmers available on the market. Their price generally ranges from $100 to $100,000 depending on the accuracy they provide. For instance, solutions that provide an accuracy range of around 50 meters usually cost between $100 to $500 but they are suitable only for the most simple tasks such as crop scouting and basic navigation. Most solutions that provide 1-3 meter accuracy cost between $3,000 and $5,000. Finally, the most precise systems that provide 1-2 centimeter accuracy can cost up to $25,000.

However, there’s one notable exception. FieldBee is a GPS navigation and tractor autosteer system that offers up to 1-centimeter accuracy at an affordable price. This system is suitable for high-precision tasks such as spraying, planting, tilling, fertilizer application, etc. The system can be easily installed on the tractor in just a few minutes and switched between different machinery whenever necessary. Plus, a FieldBee autosteer system allows farmers to save up to 120 euro per hectare.

Final thoughts

GPS is quickly becoming one of the most important technologies used in agriculture today. While agriculture GPS systems that provide high-precision measurement results can cost as much as $100,000, FieldBee offers an affordable and easy-to-use tractor navigation and autosteer solution perfect for small and medium-sized farms.
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