Small Robot Company announced its first commercial sale to the National Robotarium in Edinburgh, Scotland. This is a world-first for scientific crop research, with an autonomous robot is set to help farmers better monitor the health status of individual crop plants and reduce herbicide use.
Experts from the National Robotarium, a centre for robotics and artificial intelligence based at Heriot-Watt University’s Edinburgh campus, in partnership with the James Hutton Institute will use Small Robot Company’s ‘Tom v4’ agritech robot to remotely scan agricultural fields to identify, locate and log individual weeds and crop plants. This information will then be passed through an AI algorithm to create a ‘treatment map’ which tells farmers exactly how much herbicide to use and where to apply it.
The National Robotarium is part of the Data-Driven Innovation initiative, supported by £21 million from the UK Government and £1.4 million from the Scottish Government. The initiative aims to turn Edinburgh into the data capital of Europe and is part of the wider £1.3 billion Edinburgh and South-East Scotland City Region Deal.
Small Robot Co (SRC) is a British agritech start-up for sustainable farming with a focus on optimisation prior to roll out, in particular value engineering, automation and weed identification. The aim is to maximise value and profitability around a smaller number of customer relationships, requiring fewer robots.