Tools & data

News 2 commentslast update:25 Mar 2019

Autonomous crop management solutions to come

Valmont Industries and Israeli based start-up/scale-up Prospera have entered into a global partnership to set the course to provide growers with autonomous crop management solutions generating greater returns, while requiring fewer production inputs and resources.

With the partnership, Valmont and Prospera are integrating artificial intelligence (AI) technologies with center pivot irrigation. Valmont Industries provides irrigation equipment for agriculture and is the parent company of Valley Irrigation. Prospera was founded in 2014 and since then secured multiple investments.

Real-time crop diagnoses

The intelligence shared between connected devices and the pivot, along with the integration of data science, machine-learning and AI, will enable the companies to develop real-time crop diagnoses and irrigation recommendations, resulting in greater returns for the grower.

By utilising the pivots as the digital data hub, growers can optimise their irrigation and progress toward autonomous crop management.

Text continues underneath image

Autonomous crop management will result in a self-learning machine, using inputs from the field and the grower to deliver proper water, fertigation and chemigation. - Photo: Mike Malone
Autonomous crop management will result in a self-learning machine, using inputs from the field and the grower to deliver proper water, fertigation and chemigation. - Photo: Mike Malone

Autonomous crop management

Autonomous crop management will result in a self-learning machine, using inputs from the field and the grower to deliver proper water, fertigation and chemigation. Launching in the spring of 2019, anomaly detection is a fundamental building block for growers entering into AI functionality.

Mitigate risks in the field

Providing visual detection of anomalies or issues, this technology provides essential features to mitigate risks in the field, assisting the grower with their irrigation and crop management practices. It will be available from Valley for all brands of pivots through a subscription-based model.

“Valley Irrigation is transforming the center pivot from solely an irrigation machine to an autonomous crop management tool,” Valmont President and CEO Stephen G. Kaniewski commented.

Text continues underneath image

The joint machine-learning technology is targeted to reach 1 million acres by 2020. - Photo: Prospera
The joint machine-learning technology is targeted to reach 1 million acres by 2020. - Photo: Prospera

1 million acres by 2020

The joint machine-learning technology is targeted to reach 1 million acres by 2020. To develop the technology, the 2 companies collectively plan to invest more than $ 40 million over the next 3 years. Valmont-built equipment annually irrigates approximately 25 million acres (10 million hectares) around the world. Prospera currently monitors over $ 5 billion of greenhouse production.

Also read: Weather data: The next holy grail?

2 comments

  • SLP Podvin

    We are trying to include an electric tractor to our agrivoltaic project. To your knowledge does John Deere or another company have an electric tractor yet? Let me know. Thanks, Scott optimizationpros@gmail.com

  • Hugo Claver

    John Deere does have one, so do several other manufacturers, such as Fendt. For an overview, you may want to have a look here: https://www.futurefarming.com/Search/?q=electric+tractor

Or register to be able to comment.