Farms can experience numerous benefits from using technology that integrates sensor data, equipment, and analytics. GPS-tagged data and web-based applications enable farmers to analyze their yields in detail, while software commands to drones, robotics, and other systems can automate precision farming.
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Field and Weather Monitoring
Sensors that collect productivity and environmental data are often distributed across farms in wireless networks. Through GPS location tagging, this data can enable variable rate technology: the selection of agricultural inputs based on site-specific yields and conditions for maximum profitability.
GPS and other global navigation satellite systems utilize receivers to track the position of sensors, drones, tags and machinery. These allow agricultural data to be tagged to a precise location, enabling yield mapping, variable rate technology, asset tracking and precision guidance of equipment.
Soil sensors provide data that is analyzed to determine the water intake of crops, health of roots and necessary irrigation changes. Cloud analytics can also enable automated irrigation control.
Wearable and internal sensors for livestock provide biometric and production information that enable farmers to optimize animal feeding, breeding and comfort management. This data can also automate these tasks through integration with robotic equipment
Drones equipped with sensors and other payloads automatically perform crop health and field assessments, yield mapping, planting, spraying, irrigation and more. Using drones for these tasks saves time and can increase yields.
Mobile robots and driverless technology are quickly advancing in their ability to automatically perform soil maintenance, crop health assessment, weeding, fruit picking, harvesting, planting, plowing and irrigation. Robots can perform various other functions including livestock milking and feeding.
Indoor farming is a highly efficient method for growing crops. Sensors, vertical farming and automated control systems, among other technologies, can optimize efficiency and yields. Many greenhouses are undergoing a transition to efficient LED lighting and sensor-based systems.
Consumers are demanding greater transparency and traceability in their seafood products. Direct monitoring of fisheries improves both while increasing supply chain efficiency. Sensors may be mounted to boats, underwater nets or robots to collect data on animal health and company practices.
Freshness sensors and asset tracking devices on pallets and vehicles are used to monitor freshness and quality of food during transport from farm to store. Real-time data may be used to dynamically route products to the ideal destination.