Two new improvements include Long Range RTK, which expands the working distance of a vehicle from the base station, and Shading Optimization, which enhances AutoTrac performance in partially shaded conditions.
“Precision guidance technology continues to improve with better software to allow greater accuracy in variable field conditions,” says Kayla Reynolds, product marketing manager, John Deere Ag Management Solutions. “Our previous version of StarFire RTK had sub-inch accuracy but was limited to a 6-mile radius from the base station. The new Long Range RTK software now maintains the accuracy but allows a 12-mile radius from the base station.
Deere says that operators will receive sub-inch accuracy at a greater distance, delivering increased value from the RTK (real-time kinematic) system. As with all RTK systems, in order to gain such accuracy, the vehicle must have a line of sight to the base station. Many operators, dealers and networking groups have set up base stations on towers to enhance the line of sight needed for this technology.
“We’ve also developed Shading Optimization software for our AutoTrac SF1 and SF2 systems,” explains Reynolds. “Barriers such as trees, buildings or other structures are a problem for all guidance systems because they disrupt the satellite signal to the vehicle, especially during headland turns. Shading Optimization allows AutoTrac to stay enabled when moving through areas with trees and windbreaks.
“The AutoTrac guidance system usually needs a stable signal from the L1 and L2 bands. Previously, the system would shut down if one signal was missing because of shading. The new Shading Optimization continues to “AutoTrac” even if the StarFire iTC Receiver is receiving a signal from the L1 band only. This adds more consistency and accuracy to optimize the AutoTrac system. “Signal disruption can still be a problem if both the L1 and L2 bands are lost,” says Reynolds. “But we’ve helped improve the overall system with the enhanced Shading Optimization software.”
For more information, contact your local John Deere dealer or visit www.JohnDeere.com/Ag.