They say the agriculture industry is “betting the farm” on drone-based precision agriculture. In fact, of the many industries amenable to drone technology, large US farms, spread out over vast distances, are turning out to be one of the most promising areas for the commercial use of drones.
With that, the old nursery rhyme “The Farmer in the Dell” is being rewritten with a new verse that includes taking a radio controlled drone to turn the farm’s flagging prospects around.
According to agriculture industry watchers, there are now a large number of drones designed specifically for farm use and thousands of agricultural drones for sale online. For farmers today, whether small or huge, the cost of farm machinery has increased exponentially over the past several decades. But drones are a relatively inexpensive technology that brings advanced sensors and imaging capabilities, giving farmers a new way to increase yields, reduce crop damage, and the like.
Agribotix is just one player in the new agricultural drone market. The company provides on-demand data processing or agricultural intelligence to help farmers quickly understand the lay of their land in 21st-century terms.
Following is a video of one of Agribotix’ drones, the Enduro Quad, priced at $11,900. According to Agribotix, “We’ve paired the adaptable Enduro quadcopter, purpose-built for precision agriculture, with one year of unlimited FarmLens™ data processing services at a price that makes agricultural intelligence accessible. Combining the ease of use of a multi-rotor with a new, long-endurance design, Agribotix enables you to bring flight and imagery collection capabilities to your business.”
Because of the intense interest of the agriculture industry in drones, the FAA is working to develop rules that will help farmers obtain the benefits of drones. A book, “Push Button Agriculture: Robotics, Drones Satellite-Guided Soil and Crop Management,” goes into the use of robotics, drones (UAVs), and satellite-guided precision farming methods.
The following video from senseFly explains and illustrates how the use of a precision farming UAV helps improve crop management.