During the growing period, and throughout the rest of year, data is collected to map the in-field situation in as much detail as possible.
Biomass, chlorophyll content, nitrogen intake, green cover
SOIL SAMPLES AND LABORATORY ANALYSIS
P, K, micronutrients, organic matter
Conclusions can be drawn about variables like soil moisture and structure, and therefore also soil potential.
FARM’S OWN WEATHER STATION
Water resources, risk of disease, growth forecast
Relief maps provide information about the flow of nutrients into lower zones and the variability of solar radiation.
A lot of sensor data cannot be interpreted precisely without knowledge of your own land.
Variations in yield potential, insights into soil parameters
DATA PROCESSING BASED ON AGRONOMIC KNOWLEDGE
TWO PATHS — ONE GOAL
The data processed by computational models is used to create treatment recommendations or to implement decisions directly in the field.
REREQUISITE: AUTOMATIC CONTROL AND VARIABLE RATE SYSTEMS
WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT
Precision farming can have different goals. Here is an overview of the most important approaches.
The pH value within a field can vary widely. Precision liming harmonises soil structure and biological activity. In addition, it reduces the risk of excess lime, which will impair the local absorption of nutrients.
In areas where a P or K deficiency is observed, the required amount of fertiliser is applied for optimal nutrient supply to the plants. Little or none is spread on areas that are already well or even: This leads to lower input costs. After a few years, yields will become more even.
The advantages of homogeneous sowing are obvious: Weeds have a harder time finding gaps within the crop. The plants divide water resources more equally, which reduces water stress. And the even seed density lowers the risk of leaf diseases and brackling or lodging.
Variable rate application is most common for N fertiliser. Precision N fertiliser application (especially with the final dose) helps to secure the yield and protein content of the crop. In this way, it also helps to protect the environment and maximise potential earnings.
Organic fertiliser is applied at variable rates based on a system which analyses the slurry composition and adjusts the speed accordingly during application. This optimises the cost of the subsequent mineral N use while protecting the environment.
Biomass data is sufficient to apply variable rate growth regulators. Where there is little biomass, there is little or none applied. Where more biomass is measured, the dose is adjusted upwards accordingly. In this way, the farmer keeps the risk of brackling and lodging under control, which in turn can affect threshing and drying costs.
After risk factor analysis, herbicides and fungicides are only used where there is an existing or risk of infestation. This is primarily about reducing costs. The savings can be considerable: With the same efficacy, site-specific weed control can cut herbicide costs by 50%, benefiting the environment and the image of farming.