AiCPlus Spot Spraying technology
Agrifac presents the new AiCPlus camera system with integrated Artificial Intelligence to act upon the detected data all in line with the new farming management concept: NEED Farming. NEED Farming is a farming management concept based on observing, measuring and responding to differences in crops, soil, and other variables, thereby reacting to the individual needs of every single plant.
At Agrifac we think precision farming is not precise enough. To make the next step in agriculture, we need care at plant level, armed with the latest technologies. Taking care of every plant’s individual needs instead of the needs of a whole field, resulting in higher yields. NEED Farming, our new management concept, is all about combining the knowledge of the farmer with technology that enables him to apply this at the large scale on plant level.
Looking at a plant to determine its NEEDs and subsequently fulfilling that need is nothing novel, this is what farmers have been doing since the invention of agriculture more than 5000 years ago. However, the number of qualified, capable people with these skills is decreasing, and for the ones possessing this ability, it’s hard (or even impossible) to stay alert the entire day - this is where AiCPlus, pronounced as “I See Plus,” comes to play.
Scan, learn, act, learn
Soil composition, height profile and so on: no field is even in composition. Also, the local microclimate creates differences. Failure to observe these differences leads to a higher, less efficient use of resources, while the yield is not optimal. AiCPlus interprets what is being observed. The different algorithms are not developed by technicians but by farmers, through which is assured that the AiCPlus makes the same decisions as the farmer would do. The intelligent AiCPlus cameras are mounted on every three meters of the boom and immediately analyses and processes the crop. The desired quantities can be sprayed immediately, without offline and time-consuming processing.
Whereas previous spot spray systems where only suitable to detect biomass using infrared, AiCPlus uses RGB cameras that enable in-crop weed detection. The artificial intelligence software recognises and differentiates between background, crop and weeds. This creates more applications and possibilities combining Agrifac’s NEED Farming technologies to for example have different application rates per weed species while in the meantime generating a map of weed presence in the paddock. Using DynamicDosePlus and AiCPlus in summer spray, it is also possible to blanket spray a lower dose like 20% to spray volunteers, spray 50% on normal weeds and 100% on hard to kill weeds such as Wild Radish. For spot spraying “green on brown” the sprayer can operate at 30 km/h and 20 km/h for in-crop spraying. The algorithms have to be taught by example, so every weed has to be labelled in varying conditions and crops. The rule of thumb for AiCPlus is that an algorithm can be developed for any weed that can be seen by eye in the field.