Automated farming systems that are changing the world of agriculture

Virtually every aspect of our lives and every industry in the world has been changed by new technologies in the last few decades, and agriculture is not an exception. Automated farming systems are revolutionizing the way agriculture professionals plant seeds, get rid of weeds, apply fertilizer, harvest crops, etc. In this article, we will talk about some amazing automated farming systems that were developed by engineers in the last few years.

Automated harvesting

While farmers have been using machines to harvest grains for many decades, fruit and vegetable harvesting proved to be a very tricky automation task. However, several companies have been able to crack this challenge. For example, Agrobot has created a robot that uses 24 automated manipulators to carefully harvest strawberries without damaging them. Abundant Robotics has created a machine that uses a vacuum to harvest apples.

Automatically steered and autonomous tractors

Today, farmers can purchase affordable autosteering systems that can guide a tractor along straight or curved parallel lines around the field with centimeter precision. While these solutions still require an operator to be present in the cabin, they can provide many benefits for farmers.

At the same time, some companies such as Rabbit Tractor are developing tractors that are completely autonomous and don’t require a driver.

Automated weeding

Manual weeding is extremely labor-intensive, which is why several companies have developed robots that can fight weeds automatically using computer vision. This can help reduce the use of pesticides in the fields by as much as 90%. For instance, ecoRobotix has created a robot that can automatically detect and remove weeds in the field, while Blue River Technology has developed a machine that sprays herbicides exclusively on weeds, helping minimize herbicide resistance.

Drones

There are several types of agriculture drones that solve different problems. For example, some drones are used to monitor crops remotely from above with infrared analysis and other imaging methods. Other drones can be used to apply chemicals to crops without the need to use a tractor.

Final thoughts

In a world plagued by labor shortages and the rising cost of resources, automated farming systems are presenting a unique opportunity for farmers to change the way they operate their farms, minimize the need for unskilled labor, and make their operations more sustainable and profitable.
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