Electric GUSS: John Deere’s New Autonomous Electric Weed Killer

By: | March 20th, 2024

Photo by Rubaitul Azad on Unsplash

Anyone familiar with companies like John Deere is aware of just how technologically advanced and disruptive farming equipment can be. From spraying drones to sound signal-powered mapping, the company is constantly developing new tools for farmers to improve their operations.

This time, John Deere’s latest development comes in the form of its first fully electric autonomous herbicide sprayer. The vehicle, the world’s first of its kind, was developed in partnership with GUSS Automation, a company specializing in autonomous spraying solutions.

Dubbed Electric GUSS, this new automated vehicle relies on a fully electrical power system designed around KREISEL’s batteries. This allows it to use a single charge to fully spray a wide area using its GPS and LiDAR-based spatial recognition capabilities.

The spraying capability of Electric GUSS is up to 22 feet of row spacing, which can be adjusted through its adjustable spray booms. As these booms are designed to break if an unexpected obstacle is found, the internal elements of the vehicle (as well as crops and external elements) are protected from damage.

The vehicle’s new detection technology also allows it to identify chlorophyll levels in different weeds, spraying them selectively when needed. This approach could save up to 90% in materials depending on several factors by automating highly effective spot weed spraying.

Proprietary software also makes it possible for a single employee to control up to eight of these machines. If the operator or anyone else gets close enough to be in danger, the vehicle’s safety features will automatically stop its operation to prevent any potential accident.

With no tailpipe emissions and energy use efficiency, Electric GUSS could very easily become a game changer in the industry. According to GUSS Automation COO Gary Thompson, the company decided to make GUSS an electric vehicle due to popular demand.

John Deere believes that its new product will offer more reliability, performance, productivity, and profitability to farmers than products relying on other energy sources. The company seeks to make Electronic Guss available to customers in the near future by offering them at select locations in North America and Australia.

Ashton Henning

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