Research: Boom And Clutch Control Save Money

The more “irregular” your fields are and the “finer” your application and planting resolution, the bigger the benefit. That’s the essence of research findings out of Auburn University in Alabama to gauge the cost savings possible using automatic control technologies. John Fulton, assistant professor, biosystems engineering at the school, worked with his team to develop a computer model to run tests of automatic control technologies over typical field to calculate the cost savings based on a reduction in overlapping and overspray.

In Alabama, where irregularly shaped fields are the rule rather than the exception, Fulton was compelled to find a way to test the potential benefit of the recent technology growers and custom applicators were considering to add greater control to planting and application work.

The computer model was designed to test three types of field operations: over the top crop protection application, sidedress nitrogen application, and seed planting. The model can test any configuration, from section-based control all the way down to individual nozzles and clutches to measure the benefit of different resolutions of control.

Auburn University’s published production costs for “traditional” field operations were used as the basis for comparison, says Fulton, and all known costs (including seed technology fees) were included in the equation to present the clearest possible picture of benefit.

The verdict? Irregularity of field shape is the thing that generates the biggest benefit to the technology, as well as “environmental barriers” such as wooded areas, structures, and waterways. And in comparing “trials” at different resolutions from section to individual nozzle/clutch, the benefit increased significantly. On 20 fields tested, the benefit ranged from a low of 2% cost savings on overapplication to a high of 10%.

Spray control at the nozzle resolution is not widely available yet, but Fulton says that the payback being demonstrated through the model indicates that its adoption will be strong once it becomes more available to end users.

For more information, contact John Fulton via email or visit the Auburn Precision Agriculture web site. A Precision Agriculture and Field Crops Conference is scheduled for December 8, 2009 in Atmore, AL. Visit the Auburn precision agriculture web site for the latest information.

Leave a Reply

Variable Rate Stories
Variable Rate2014 Precision Ag Top 5 Technologies
September 2, 2014
The top precision agriculture technologies didn’t change in the past year, according to experts. What has changed, however, is their order of activity. Read More
Variable RateVRA Shows Growth In All Its Forms
May 27, 2014
From seed to fertility to irrigation, variable rate is benefiting from the positive ag economy and a proliferation of new technology. Read More
Variable RateVariable Rate Success Makes Precision Programs ‘Stick’
January 28, 2014
A Michigan-based consultants believes variable-rate fertilizer programs will hold up in 2014, even if the ag economy takes a step back this year. Read More
EquipmentTeeJet Technologies Introduces New Automatic Sprayer Control
August 29, 2013
The Radion 8140 automatic sprayer rate control is equipped with a bright 4.3" color touch screen, allowing operators to easily enter system settings and the target application rate. Read More
Trending Articles
Precision Ag Innovation Series
DataAugust Event To Focus On Data Platforms In Agriculture
May 27, 2015
The PrecisionAg Innovation Series is proud to present "Data Platform Solutions: Putting Knowledge to Work." This one-day forum delves into the state of data platform offerings in agriculture, what's working, and where things are headed in the future. Join us on August 31 in Champaign, IL. Read More
DataFarmers Edge Adds Investment Partner
May 27, 2015
Data management and precision solutions provider Farmers Edge, announced the backing of new investment partner Mitsui & Co., Ltd. Read More
SoftwareTrimble Opens Up Irrigate-IQ
May 4, 2015
Trimble announced today that it has launched a new fully scalable version of its Irrigate-IQ precision irrigation solution that also Read More
AwardsNominations Deadline Extended For 2015 PrecisionAg Awards Of Excellence
April 28, 2015
The PrecisionAg Award of Excellence program sheds light on some of the most important people and programs that have helped agriculture realize the full benefits of technology to improve agronomy, efficiency, and stewardship in crop production. Read More
DataCropMetrics, DTN Announce Collaboration On Weather, Irrigation Data
March 11, 2015
The new collaboration will enable growers with real-time, site specific weather and crop modeling information dedicated to helping improve grower’s irrigation management decisions. Read More
iSOYL mobile app
Variable RateVariable Rate Applications Made Easy With New iPad App
February 20, 2015
The new iSOYL app streamlines the variable rate application process for iPad users, saving growers time, money and effort. Read More
Latest News
Industry NewsValley Irrigation Appoints New VP Of Global Ops
June 30, 2015
Valley Irrigation has appointed Joshua Dixon as the vice president of global operations. An experienced global manufacturing executive, Dixon has Read More
EquipmentCase IH Launches New Precision Air Carts
June 29, 2015
Case IH recently introduced its new Precision Air 5 series air carts, developed to get the most from every plant’s Read More
SoftwareAgren Unveils Sustainability Solution For Ag Retail
June 29, 2015
Agren, Inc., a provider of sustainability technology to agriculture, unveiled their three-tiered Sustainability Solution for ag retailers today. Agren’s Sustainability Read More
DataClimate Corp: We’ve Mapped Nearly 45% Of U.S. Cor…
June 25, 2015
Today, The Climate Corporation, a division of Monsanto Company, announced that farmers have mapped more than 75 million row crop Read More
UncategorizedInterDrone Conference Lands in Vegas This September
June 23, 2015
From thorny business and regulatory issues to the latest technologies and techniques for agriculture markets and beyond, the InterDrone Conference will present a multifaceted educational and networking program. Read More
Dave Cox Davco Farming
GPSGPS Landforming Improves Surface Drainage, Water Infilt…
June 22, 2015
GPS Landforming is the latest precision agriculture tool to hit mainstream adoption by farmers looking to increase production and profits Read More
EquipmentFAA: Commercial Drone Regs Should Be Finalized In 12 Mo…
June 18, 2015
U.S. commercial drone operations could take flight on a large scale by this time next year, as federal regulators finalize Read More
Computing17 Innovations That Shaped The Precision Ag Revolution
June 17, 2015
Nothing generates as much debate as a ranking of top anything, from NFL quarterbacks and restaurants to pickup trucks and Read More
FarmLink, True Harvest, data, precision ag, yield data
DataFarmLink, Jackson-Jennings Co-op Form TrueHarvest Agree…
June 17, 2015
Jackson-Jennings Co-op and FarmLink today announced a new agreement that offers co-op members access to TrueHarvest, the yield benchmarking tool Read More
DataGearing Up For InfoAg 2015
June 16, 2015
Coming off a 2014 InfoAg which saw a record-setting number of attendees, InfoAg 2015 – the premier event in precision Read More
ComputingAgriCharts Launches Online Marketplace Grains.com
June 16, 2015
AgriCharts, a division of Barchart.com, Inc. and a provider of information and technology solutions for agribusinesses, today announced the launch Read More
DataAutoProbe Brings On NC Ag Services As Distributor
June 15, 2015
AutoProbe Technologies, manufacturers of the AutoProbe automated soil sampler, names NC Ag Services, Inc. of Pantego, NC, its North Carolina distributor. David Read More
ComputingValley Irrigation Launches Mobile Website
June 11, 2015
As smartphones become more integral in farm management and increasingly prevalent among growers, it’s essential for agriculture companies to provide Read More
AwardsAwards Of Excellence: Dave Scheiderer Receives 2015 Cro…
June 11, 2015
Dave Scheiderer, founder, Integrated Ag Services (Milford Center, OH), has been named 2015 PrecisionAg.com CropAdvisor/Entrepreneur award winner. Scheiderer was nominated Read More
AwardsAwards Of Excellence: Dr. Raj Khosla Named 2015 Precisi…
June 11, 2015
Colorado State University professor Dr. Raj Khosla, a distinguished Monfort professor of precision agriculture and an assistant dean of international Read More
AwardsAwards Of Excellence: Colorado Grower Named 2015 Farmer…
June 11, 2015
Rod Weimer, a farm manager at Fagerberg Farms along the Front Range in Eaton, CO, has been named the 2015 Read More
FarmLink, True Harvest, data, precision ag, yield data
DataFarmLink, RDO Equipment Form Alliance Around TrueHarves…
June 10, 2015
RDO Equipment Co. and FarmLink today announced a new agreement that will further enable improvements in productivity and profitability by Read More
EquipmentTopcon Acquires NORAC Systems
June 10, 2015
Topcon Positioning Group announces the acquisition of NORAC Systems International, a pioneer and the world’s leading developer of ultrasonic sensing Read More