Smart Ag Announces Driverless Tractor Automation Platform


An Iowa technology company has unlocked the tremendous potential for automation in agriculture by developing the first cloud-based platform for driverless tractors, according to a press release from AgPR.

Smart Ag officials in Ames announced today they are releasing on a limited basis, the first application for the platform, called AutoCart. This software application fully automates a grain cart tractor, which provide farmers much needed assistance during the demanding harvest season.

Colin Hurd, the founder and CEO of Smart Ag, said the innovative technology will allow farmers to automate their existing equipment and maximize its efficiency and capacity – regardless of manufacturer.

“Farming should no longer be defined by what the equipment industry decides is better or more profitable. We believe agriculture is best when farmers have choices,” Hurd said. “The best way to improve our customers’ operational capacity is to enable them to use automation and driverless technology on their farms. With the correct technology and knowledge, farmers can do the seemingly impossible.”

Over two years in development, AutoCart, along with the tractor automation kit, is a plug-and-play system that automates existing grain cart tractors and is compatible with any brand or combination of brands. The system allows a combine operator to set staging and unloading locations in a field, adjust speed, monitor location and command the grain cart to sync precisely to the speed and direction of the combine. After it is loaded, the AutoCart automatically returns to an unloading point elsewhere in the field.

According to Hurd, the AutoCart application provides a solution to one of the biggest challenges facing every farmer – critical labor shortages during harvest. He said Smart Ag’s driverless tractor technology “empowers farmers to leave the cab” and complete their operations faster and with less labor than ever before.

“AutoCart performs the same function as a driver, only it is more profitable, more reliable and safer,” Hurd added. “Our technology has the potential to bring significant change to U.S. crop production through improved productivity, profitability and safety.”

Smart Ag recently completed a comprehensive beta test of AutoCart on Midwest farms during the corn and soybean harvest. One of those test sites was Kyle Mehmen’s fifth-generation MBS Family Farms near Plainfield, IA.

“The AutoCart system performed extremely well for us during our corn harvest, and I fully expect it to be a game changer for agriculture,” Mehmen said.  “These are the kind of technologies that we’re going to adopt on our farm one way or the other. It’s simply a matter of when and which ones.”

The AutoCart technology is now available on a first-come, first-served basis through the Smart Ag website: www.Smart-Ag.com. Hurd said that the cost of the system is comparable to retrofitting a sprayer or planter with precision technology.

ABOUT SMART AG

Based in Ames, IA, Smart Ag is an investor-backed technology company developing autonomous farming solutions for row crop agriculture. The company was founded in 2015 and is offering aftermarket retrofit kits to automate farm equipment, as well as a platform to connect, manage, and safely operate autonomous agricultural machinery. Smart Ag is led by successful ag entrepreneur Colin Hurd and former John Deere ISG and Ag Leader Manager Mark Barglof.

Leave a Reply

2 comments on “Smart Ag Announces Driverless Tractor Automation Platform

  1. […] When we think about the future of driving, we generally think about cars on the road and commuters that aren’t required to keep their hands on the wheel — because A.I. is doing the driving. What we generally don’t think about, however, is driverless vehicles on the farm. Nevertheless, a company called Smart Ag has announced functional driverless tractor technology in the form of “AutoCart” software, according to Matthew J. Grassi with Precision Ag. […]

Robotics/Labor Savers Stories
AmericasSciFi in Ag: Rolls Royce Tech On Your Planter? Robotic Bugs for Maintenance?
July 31, 2018
Article Notes: This monthly column takes some crazy sounding ideas and applies them to the field of Ag Tech. The Read More
Skeketee-IC-Weeder
DronesAutomated Weeders Have Arrived in Vegetable Fields
July 12, 2018
The vegetable production areas of the Central Coast of California have lifted vegetable cultivation to a high art, writes Richard Read More
Robotics/Labor SaversStine Seed Plunks Down $5 Million on Smart Ag’s Driverless Tractor Kit
June 14, 2018
Stine Seed Farm has invested $5 million in Smart Ag Inc., an Iowa technology firm that has developed a full Read More
Robotic-Field-Scanner
Robotics/Labor SaversChange is Coming to the Fruit Industry: Mechanization is Taking Shape
May 29, 2018
When it comes to the mechanization of the fruit industry, and the overall goal of reducing reliance on laborers who Read More
Trending Articles
1 On 1 With Paul Schrimpf: Simplot’s Allan Fetters
PrecisionAg InstituteOne on One With Simplot’s Allan Fetters
August 8, 2018
Allan Fetters of PrecisionAg Institute partner Simplot Grower Solutions talks about techology trends and key learnings from the recent InfoAg Conference in this exclusive interview with PrecisionAg's Paul Schrimpf. Read More
PrecisionAg InstitutePrecisionAg Institute Whitepaper Library
August 1, 2018
Welcome to the PrecisionAg Institute Whitepaper library! Here you will find free whitepapers and case studies from the PrecisionAg Institute Partners Read More
AmericasIntegrity Ag Group: People Over Precision
July 30, 2018
It’s not every day that this reporter walks into the office of a precision ag dealer, sits across from the Read More
farmer-tractor-tablet
Systems ManagementWhat is Digital Farming — Really?
July 24, 2018
The agricultural community has spent several years synthesizing an operational description for digital farming. In several cases, there have also Read More
Data ManagementInfoAg News: Farmobile Launches DataEngine, Streamlines DataStore Buyer Process
July 17, 2018
Busy times these days out in Leawood, KS, for ag data startup Farmobile, as they continue to – pardon the Read More
ISPA-Yoshua-Bengio
EventsHighlights from the 14th International Conference on Precision Agriculture
July 9, 2018
The 14th International Conference on Precision Agriculture (ICPA) presented by the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA) was held in Montreal, Read More
Latest News
WinField’s Joel Wipperfurth On Empowering Data-Driven Decisions
InfoAg ConferenceOne on One with Joel Wipperfurth, Winfield United
August 15, 2018
Winfield United's Joel Wipperfurth discusses ag technology trends and topics during last month’s InfoAg Conference. Read More
Geosys
Industry NewsUrtheCast to Acquire Geosys from Land O’Lakes in …
August 15, 2018
UrtheCast Corp. and Land O’Lakes, Inc. today announced they have entered a binding term sheet for the purchase of Geosys Read More
Harvest
Data ManagementAre You Ready for This Year’s Digital Harvest?
August 15, 2018
As the days in the Northern Hemisphere slowly get shorter, they are getting longer in the Southern Hemisphere and everywhere Read More
Wheelman-Pro
Industry NewsAgJunction Expands Automatic Steering Market to Smaller…
August 14, 2018
AgJunction, the autosteering company, has introduced Wheelman, a new way for farmers to automatically and accurately steer farm equipment at Read More
Drip-irrigation
Precision IrrigationFertigation as a Precision Agriculture Tool
August 14, 2018
Fertigation is a fertilizer application method in which dissolved fertilizers are delivered to the crop through the irrigation system. This Read More
Events5 Reasons You Should Attend Growing Innovations
August 13, 2018
The specialty crop market is wracked by unprecedented change: labor scarcity, water shortages, pressing demands for increased quality and transparency Read More
Data Science tablet
Data ManagementMicrosoft, Agile Networks Detail Central Ohio Broadband…
August 9, 2018
Agile Networks, a leading provider of telecommunications solutions, and Microsoft Corp. has announced a new agreement to bring broadband internet Read More
AmericasIvy Tech Opens Center of Excellence to Train Tomorrow&#…
August 9, 2018
Students interested in careers in precision agriculture equipment technology or diesel technology now have the opportunity to pursue certificates, technical Read More
1 On 1 With Paul Schrimpf: Simplot’s Allan Fetters
PrecisionAg InstituteOne on One With Simplot’s Allan Fetters
August 8, 2018
Allan Fetters of PrecisionAg Institute partner Simplot Grower Solutions talks about techology trends and key learnings from the recent InfoAg Conference in this exclusive interview with PrecisionAg's Paul Schrimpf. Read More
Corn field sunset
Industry NewsTrimble RTX Correction Technology Now Delivers Two Cent…
August 7, 2018
Trimble has announced that its Trimble RTX GNSS corrections technology can now achieve horizontal accuracies of better than two centimeters. Read More
Sentera-Gimbaled-Quad-Sensor
Sensors/IoTSentera Gimbaled Quad Sensor Optimizes Crop Health Data…
August 7, 2018
Sentera’s Quad sensor is now available in an integrated gimbal-stabilized package for DJI Inspire and Matrice drones. Featuring four fully-customizable Read More
BigDataSmall2
Data ManagementPrecision Agriculture: A Smaller Approach to Big Data
August 7, 2018
Big data is one of the most buzzed-about concepts in our industry. Rarely do we read a newsletter, attend a Read More
Grower-Retailer
Industry NewsAgworld, K-coe Isom Form Strategic Partnership
August 6, 2018
Agworld and K-coe Isom have announced a strategic partnership that will see them integrating business advisory and technology to deliver Read More
Industry NewsAgEagle Acquires Agribotix
August 6, 2018
AgEagle Aerial Systems has signed an agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets of Agribotix, a Boulder, CO-based drone-enabled Read More
Digital-Farming
Systems ManagementImplementing Digital Farming’s Five Major Needs
August 2, 2018
Building a house starts with a plan and then a foundation; it does not start with doors and windows. From Read More
PrecisionAg InstitutePrecisionAg Institute Whitepaper Library
August 1, 2018
Welcome to the PrecisionAg Institute Whitepaper library! Here you will find free whitepapers and case studies from the PrecisionAg Institute Partners Read More
Bruce-Erickson-video
Excellence AwardsPassion for Teaching: Purdue’s Bruce Erickson
August 1, 2018
PrecisionAg Award of Excellence recipient Bruce Erickson is driven to share his knowledge of precision technologies and techniques with students, as well as the larger agriculture community. Read More
Newell-Kitchen
Excellence AwardsChasing the Mystery Behind Soil Variability: Newell Kit…
August 1, 2018
Newell Kitchen of the University of Missouri, recipient of the Legacy award in the 2018 PrecisionAg Award of Excellence program, has worked for decades to employ technology in unlocking the secrets hidden in farm fields. Read More