From a fruit picking drone to a ‘jumping’ weeding robot: what is the most promising field robot concept in 2020? Future Farming and FIRA have organised a competition in which the best or most promising robot is selected. The jury selected 10 candidates from all submissions. The professional jury will assess these 10 entries. But the public can also vote. What do you think is the most promising field robot concept? Take part in the poll and cast your vote!
Recently, Future Farming launched the world’s first Field Robot Catalogue. In this robot catalogue you will find 35 field and harvest robots, which you will be able to buy, lease or hire in 2021.
All the robots in the catalogue are commercially available. However, there are also many concepts being developed. From tool carriers to picking drones; manufacturers are doing their best to develop practical robots that will help farmers cope with current and future challenges.
With this competition, Future Farming and FIRA want to encourage developers of robots worldwide to continue to develop smart solutions for farmers. Out of all the entries, 10 Field Robot Concepts have been selected.The professional jury will assess these 10 entries and choose the best or most promising one.
In addition, there is a public vote. You can enter your vote in the poll at the bottom of this article. The winner will be announced at the same time as the jury winner on December 10, 2020. The annoucement will be made December 10 at 2:45 PM CET, in the “Demos & Pitches” room during the FIRA event. Or click here for the program of the FIRA event. You can vote for your favorite robot until December 9, 12.00 AM CET.
So your opinion counts! Below you will find a short summary of each robot concept, and a poll. With that poll you can vote for your best robot concept. If you would like to explain why you voted for a particular robot or have another comment, please leave a comment at the bottom of the article.
Just recently spun-off from the University of Applied Sciences Aachen, German start-up AI.Land was created to commercialise the ETAROB field robot. Although still a research project, once commercialised, ETAROB is supposed to outperform all other systems currently out there.
Read all about the ETAROB tool carrier.
By combining the propellers of a quadcopter with an ingenious jumping mechanism, CropHopper is able to quickly travel across fields and work for much longer than a drone. It weighs 3kg, costs € 15/ha, can operate without an operator, it can work in-crop all season and it offers the potential to also automatically treat weeds, pests and diseases.
Read all about the CropHopper
A group of innovative Dutch arable farmers in the Hoeksche Waard joined in H-Wodka are having a field robot built for a range of shallow soil tillage operations.
The Robotiller will be a relatively light machine, supported by cage rollers to cover the entire width for minimal ground pressure. A power harrow and/or static tillage tools are incorporated in the implement between the electrically driven cage rollers split into three sections to allow for skid steering. The Robotiller is targeted to be a dedicated field robot for a range of shallow soil cultivations such as soil surface levelling, (false) seedbed and plantbed preparation, full width weed control and stubble cultivation.
Read all about the H-Wodka Robotiller
Tevel Aerobotics Technologies from Israel is developing flying autonomous robots used for picking various types of fruits, including apples, peaches, nectarines, pears, plums, citrus and avocado. The start-up is also working on thinning and pruning functionalities.
Read all about the Tevel fruit picking drones
At the Fendt press event on September 3, the German brand presented its latest generation of Xaver field robots. The robot now has 3 instead of 4 wheels. It is now also equipped with a seeding unit with a disc coulter. The robot serves as a development platform for future technologies on large Fendt agricultural machines.
Fieldwork Robotics has chosen raspberries as the first target for its robotic fruit and vegetable picking project. Raspberries are the most delicate of soft fruits – and with the added complication that they grow within complex foliage- they are a challenging first target for the UK-based company.
Fieldwork is a spin-out from the University of Plymouth, located on the south coast of England, where Dr Martin Stoelen leads the university’s Soft & Adaptive Robotics laboratory. The ‘soft’ technology covers variable pressure grips on the robot arm to suit the demands of the task being undertaken.
Read all about the Fieldwork Robotics fruit and vegetable picking robot
iTarra is a fully autonomous and electrically driven crawler tractor, suitable for various applications, including in agriculture. The prototype is equipped with a diesel generator, which supplies a maximum of 110 kW of electrical power for powering implements.
Read all about the iTarra multifunctional robot tractor
A new prototype hybrid robot from Canadian start-up Nexus Robotics should be able to operate fully autonomously 24 hours a day. Robot La Chèvre (French for goat) is able to recognise crops at all stages of growth. It uses AI to differentiate between weeds and crops and then pulls out weeds that are very close to the crops without damaging the crops.
Read all about the Nexus Robotics weeding robot
New Zealand’s Robotics Plus is beta testing three new Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV‘s) to demonstrate the application of its technology in several environments. The UGV’s allow growers to replace a heavy tractor vehicle with a human operator with a smaller, unmanned, more agile machine.
Read all about the Robotics Plus Unmanned Ground Vehicles
Australian startup thingc Robotics expects to deliver its first commercial agricultural robot in 18 months. But first thingc is planning to start field trials with 3 to 5 units in about 6 months. The startup wants to offer farmers a fully electric robotic platform, on which they can use the tools of their choice.
Use the poll below to vote for your most promising Field Robot Concept.