The autonomous car revolution is all set to shift into higher gears. In recent months and years, self-driving cars have been the buzzword around, and it would be no surprise if this technology changes the face of transportation in the next decade or so. The surprising fact here is, the much quieter revolution that’s been transforming the farming industry for over a decade.
Within the next decade, farming as we know is expected to be revolutionized with the use of autonomous tractors and robots on field, replacing humans completely for quicker productivity through machines. The conceptual self-driving tractors have been in development since the idea of precision agriculture surfaced in the late eighties. Back then, farming enthusiasts started using GPS technology to guide their tractors across fields, which resulted in less fuel consumption and increased efficiency. This was the foundational step, on which the mile-long journey of autonomous tractors is based. With advancements in technologies and improved vehicular communication over wireless devices, the self-driving tractors became unstoppable. Farmers started to give a tactical approach to menial farming activities like, planting the crop, harvesting, as well as its maintenance.
Advantages for Farmers using autonomous tractors
Self-steering tractors will aid fully automated operations on the field, reducing all the risks involved with human labor in farming. Moreover, the use of autonomous tractors will enable farmers to optimize their output with precision agriculture and limited resources. The use of self-driving tractors heralds a productive and advanced future for agriculture.
- Enhancing accuracy in farming: The automatic planting systems in autonomous tractors enable the planter to regulate the optimum number of seeds that is being planted in the given farm. Such accuracy and precision in planting enables the farmer to optimize on his output and produce. Consequently, the farmer harvests the maximum yield, conserving his resources, since the seed ratio to resources available in the soil will be optimized automatically.
- Avails reliable data to the farmer: The sensors in the autonomous tractors help the user to collect data on the conditions of soil, and make informed decisions on the planting, the crop management, and the harvesting routine of the crops in the farm.
- Facilitates more workable hours: Autonomous tractors allow precise control of work and farm equipment, reducing workload and stress for the employees. This facilitates longer working hours and better productivity, since exhaustion and fatigue for farmers with conventional farming methods is eliminated. Also, sensors fitted in autonomous tractors can guide it in the right course even in adverse weather conditions and low visibility. The greater flexibility at the hands of a farmer in the management of growing tasks helps in improved efficiency and more returns on investment.
- Effective land management: The autonomous tractors enables the grower to eliminate all the demerits associated with human handling of the machines and operations. The acquired data from smart sensors, such as real-time weather satellite information, helps to make best use of ideal conditions, independent of any human input, regardless of the time of day. The automated and data-driven insights on farming methods result in effective management of farm operations.
Tractors have revolutionized farming since the 1920s, and continues to do so today. Autonomous tractors are the future-on-field, improving farming activities and farm revenue. For now, autonomous tractors still require human assistance to monitor speed and performance. There are uncertainties about potential accidents that could occur when the vehicles are running unattended. However, innovations in the farm equipment field may soon allow complete remote control of these vehicles. Many manufacturers have boarded the autonomous farming train. New technologies will make an impressive impact on the market.