Machinery & Equipment

John Deere reveals fully autonomous tractor at CES 2022

John deere autonomousJohn Deere unveiled a fully autonomous tractor ready for large-scale production at CES 2022, a global tech event hosted by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)

The machine combines Deere's 8R tractorTruSet-enabled chisel ploughGPS guidance system and other advanced technologies. The autonomous tractor will be available for purchase in late 2022, said Deere. 

According to Global Agricultural Productivity, a research initiative by Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Science and Virginia Tech Foundation, the global population is expected to grow from about 8 billion to nearly 10 billion people by 2050, increasing the global food demand by 50%. Furthermore, farmers are required to feed the growing population with less available land and skilled labour and work through the variables inherent in farming like changing weather conditions and variations in soil quality.

The autonomous tractor features six pairs of stereo cameras, which enables 360-degree obstacle detection and the calculation of distance. Images captured by the cameras are passed through a deep neural network that classifies each pixel in approximately 100 milliseconds and determines the vehicular movement depending on obstacle detection. The tractor also continuously checks its position relative to a geofence, ensuring its operational location within less than an inch of accuracy.

Configuring the tractor for autonomous operation requires the operator only to transport the vehicle to the job area. The John Deere Operations Center Mobile, allows the operator to start the machine by a simple left to right swipe on their mobile phone. The app also allows the operator to monitor the vehicle’s status remotely. 

John Deere Operations Center Mobile also provides access to live video, images, data and metrics to allow the operator to adjust speed, depth and more. In the event of job quality anomalies or machine health issues, farmers will be notified remotely and can make adjustments to optimise the performance of the machine.


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Interview with Dr Markus Demmel for AGRITECHNICA

Agritechnica modern

Dr Markus Demmel, deputy director at the Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Animal Husbandry, Bavarian State Research Centre for Agriculture, Freising and the chairman of the AGRITECHNICA Innovation Commission, speaks about  AGRITECHNICA Innovations, transformation of agriculture and the direction of agricultural technology

For AGRITECHNICA 2022, 164 exhibitors had submitted their trade fair innovations for an Innovation Award. How many medals have you awarded this time and what do you think are the most important innovation drivers?

Dr Demmel: The Innovation Commission this year, consists of 36 members, who are representatives from science and research, consultants and professional farmers. The jury has selected one gold and 16 silver medals. One of the main drivers of innovation is the change in the demands on agriculture. These are no longer just about increasing the performance and quality of working methods, but increasingly about the contribution of technology to sustainable agricultural production.

What role do aspects like workload reduction and reduced complexity play in the further development of agricultural technology today?

Dr Demmel: These classical criteria listed continue to be very important as they influence the daily work and economic success on the farms.

What about efficiency, fuel consumption and increased productivity?

Dr Demmel: The research and development of agricultural machinery manufacturers continue to focus on these aspects. But today they are all increasingly focusing on the complete working process, its optimisation and the contribution that a new machine or an improved implement can make to it. Efficiency and productivity play a role but are no longer the only ones. In addition, other aspects are becoming more and more important.

Do you mean topics like soil protection, catch crops, precision sowing, less chemical and more mechanical crop protection, as well as straw distribution on combine harvesters?

Dr Demmel: In the future, agricultural innovation will be increasingly measured by its contribution to the well-known sustainability goals, to which agriculture has also committed itself. The topics you mentioned are related to this. But we will have to go further, for example, to the contribution of agricultural technology to the preservation or enhancement of biodiversity. 


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Case IH delivers 100th Austoft sugarcane harvester in Thailand

Case Ih 17 DecCase IH, along with its dealer Por Tractor, has delivered its 100th Austoft sugarcane harvester in Thailand

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Kubota invests in crop monitoring technology

Bloomfield kubotaKubota Corporation, the agricultural machinery company from Japan, has recently invested in Bloomfield Robotics, Inc., a US-based agri-tech startup

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DJI unveils its latest drone for agriculture

DJI agridroneDJI (Da-Jiang Innovation), one of the global leaders in drone and camera technology innovation, has introduced its latest agriculture drone in its crop protection series, the DJI AGRAS T20

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