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Drones: mission "possible"

 Less land, less water, less fertilizers and less pesticides. A "Mission impossible" that only robots, drones and satellites can make "possible".


The refrain is always the same. The world is too inhabited and will be more and more. Today Humanity has about seven and a half billion people and in about thirty years there will be nine billion. But it's true? According to the Viennese institute "International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis", the Norwegian academic Joergen Randers and Deutche Bank in reality the world population will touch eight billion around 2040 and then decrease due to two factors: a strong urbanization that it will lead two thirds of people to live in the city and a decline in female fertility induced by the greater economic, professional and cultural autonomy of women.

Three years ago, Fendt started the “ Mars ” project , “Mobile Agricultural Robot Swarms”, to develop a robotic system for making ultra-precise sowing using small robots working in groups. The system allows to know with precision the burial point, the depth and the time of deposition of each seed, following in a targeted way the protection, the fertilization and the growth of the plant
Two opposing theses, therefore, but which still have an impact on the agricultural sector as it is called upon to feed a higher number of mouths in the face of a certain decrease in arable land and available resources. The former in terms of extensions cause the growth of urban settlements, the latter for environmental and political reasons. In fact, it will happen that we will have to "produce more with less", an objective to which, not surprisingly, those forms of cultivation referring to the so-called "Agriculture 4.0" today on the shields thanks to the aid put in place by the Government to stimulate modernization of the sector by replacing human experience with specific and in-depth scientific analyzes carried out using satellites, drones and robots.

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In France, the Nano Technology company has developed "Dino", a two and a half meters long and a half wide robot weighing eight quintals capable of weeding up to five hectares of land a day thanks to two cameras that evaluate the growth of plants, identify weeds and have them extracted mechanically
Thanks to technology, every single agricultural square meter will produce the maximum possible, it being understood that at that point it will be necessary to decide whether to give space to technology and robots even during the harvesting phase or to continue to use handpieces of derelicts to make the Mafias and the Mafias happy. Left politicians. Sure that in the end robots will prevail, a term that will embrace both self-propelled systems used for analysis and control tasks and large open-field tractors operating independently. However, the former will make use of electric propulsion, the latter of diesel engines, which will oblige companies to reorganize themselves in terms of energy supplies and cost control, with the latter that could push towards self-production of electricity from wind, solar,

“BoniRob” is a robot developed by the German DeepField Robotics intended to operate in the field to carry out weeding via laser. It boasts an autonomy of eight hours and can cover up to five hectares per day
Moving robots with recharged batteries only through the network may in fact not be convenient exactly as it will not be convenient to increase the number of batteries to improve working autonomy. Even the robots will actually have to move on the ground giving rise to the minimum possible compaction and it is no coincidence that a lot of sector research is working on the concept of "swarm operation", in Italian "swarm work". The idea is to approach monitoring activities from the ground and light processing by means of small and light machines operated with low power, lower than a kilowatt, but operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week, means that would induce compaction of the order. of the two hundred grams per square centimeter by operating in a programmed manner,

The “Ave” is the name of the robot driven by solar energy designed by the Swiss company EcoRobotics. Detects weeds and kills them with controlled amounts of herbicide. Under ideal conditions it can cover three hectares every 12 hours
Robots of this type, if produced on a large scale and therefore made available at affordable prices, could carry out weeding and sowing activities by absorbing about 70 percent less energy than it would take to carry out the same activities with a traditional tractor and this also with equally competitive cost of ownership. It is therefore conceivable that the farms of the future, instead of having a few large tractors, will have a fleet of small autonomous robots that will perform various tasks with the constant advantage of reducing soil compaction and being able to operate even in climatic conditions without creating damage or get bogged down. It will therefore be possible, for example, to intervene in the field even if it is wet to mechanically eradicate the weeds when they begin to germinate. Day and night and without the use of herbicides. This will leave conventional autonomous tractors the task of operating when large powers are required, consequently optimizing their use and avoiding that the same machines have to be used at low or medium loads, a common situation today that gives rise to consumption that is not consistent with the activities to be carried out. .


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