An agricultural robot is an intelligent machinery designed for agricultural purposes and requires delicacy especially for robots used in harvesting. Imagine a tractor that can turn around, may go between the plant rows, or a machine that can recognize the potatoes that are not based on standards that allowing the commercialization.
To be used effectively, the agricultural machines require experienced operators, which have a direct impact on the final prices of products. Using robots in agriculture is the only way to keep production costs down while the productivity is up.
Advanced vision systems were designed to recognize based on colors or shapes when a fruit is ripe or to recognize a plant. All these innovations bring substantial improvements in the quality of harvesting and sorting of products.
In this article I make an overview of harvest and sorting agricultural robots build to work in farm along operators or autonomous.
Sorting potatoes is a tedious work and robots are the best machines that can do this. Researchers from University of Lincoln’s Robotics Lab designs a robotic system for potatoes sorting with the ability to detect potatoes that do not correspond to qualitative landmarks. In the process of cultivating potatoes and their harvesting is used more or less autonomous robots while the sorting process is largely done manually.
The TADD (Trainable Anomaly Detection and Diagnosis) system uses artificial intelligence for detection, identification and quantification of common blemishes affecting potatoes.
If in terms of software the system is complicated, technically the system uses a computer and a camera.
Sorting and packing eggs is a tedious work as well as potato sorting, two boring jobs that find the solution in robotics. A Spanish base company designs and builds a robot that packing 3,000 dozen quail eggs each day. The maximum capacity of the robot is 6,000 dozen in eight hours.
Is difficult to write about accuracy when the subject is a big vehicle like a tractor. But it is possible when the autonomous system comes from Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven) and Flanders’ Mechatronics Technology Centre (FMTC). The researchers from Belgium built a robot tractor for a wide range of autonomous maneuvers. Even it is a big vehicle, the tractor has accuracy and smallest tolerance in maneuvers due to the GPS sensor.
The robots enter into all types of farms and strawberry farms could not be avoided. A human operator control the Agrobot, both make a good team for strawberry harvesting with speed and high productivity compared with manual work.
Agrobot uses an artificial vision system called AGvision for identifying with accuracy based on the color the fruit. Based on a protocol for a ripe fruit color, the robot is programmed to select only the strawberries that meets the specified standards.
Some words about the navigation and the maneuverability. Agrobot uses a specially designed system for navigation called ATCross that include an automatic system for independent control when the robot is moving between the rows of strawberries.
Is not simple to transform a combine harvester into an autonomous machine with GPS sensors for guidance to the path. At Carnegie Mellon University, researchers working on a fully autonomous harvester in order to make the perfect machine that can work without human intervention.