The Use of UAVs in Precision Agriculture By: Bryce Payne What’s a UAV? is an acronym for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, which is defined as a powered, aerial vehicle that does not carry a human operator, uses aerodynamic forces to provide vehicle lift, can fly autonomously or be piloted remotely, can be expendable or recoverable, and can carry a lethal or nonlethal payload. (U.S. Department of Defense) Benefits Less manpower required Less maintenance More flexible Capable of doing jobs that are hard, repetitive, and dangerous. Current Use Survey Aerial photos NDVI Thermal images UAVs in Agriculture Im IV-A Pteryx UAV CropCam Cropcam image-on-demand and is an inexpensive alternative to satellite, or, flying an airplane over a field. provide images of crops, drainage, environmental, spraying, precision agriculture, etc. http://www.cropcam.com/ Pteryx UAV flying multiple missions per day without reprogramming the autopilot ability to rearrange camera head interior with minimal effort single button operation no need for groundstation enclosing the camera for better protection against dirt ability to accommodate most powerful compact digital camera models, weight range 200...1000g http://www.trigger.pl/pteryx/index.php Potential UAV Sprayers Yamaha's RMAX Cost: RC $150,000~$230,000, Autonomous $1,000,000 (ground station, antennas, computers, monitors and two complete autonomous airframes and a four camera system) Challenges Cost Technical Experience Software Crashes Liability Farming Traditions Conclusion UAVs can be very effective in high value crops (fruits and vegetables) and large scale farms. As the price of electronics goes down the price for a UAV will go down as well. Use of UAVs will become a great tool to the farmer in surveying and possibly in pesticide spraying. Questions?