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Orchards / vineyards

Orchards and vineyards often come with additional connectivity issues than those of just no or patchy mobile phone coverage. In orchards, dense tree canopy, particularly in full leaf can cause signals to “bounce” and not penetrate into mid-row areas while in vineyards there is often a cellar door opportunity that attracts additional call traffic – often making poor coverage much worse (especially when the visitors start posting data heavy “insta” pictures).
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In both cases the increase of automation is happening now and there are some fantastic solutions out there – autonomous sprayers, mowers, weeders and the like and all of these need connectivity to work. When the robotic /autonomous implement is going up and down the rows they are reliant on LIDAR for obstacle detection. When an obstacle is detected, the machine will stop and try to send a warning message, often with video of the obstacle, to a remote operator for a go/no go decision. In most orchards there are many obstacles ranging from protruding/ broken branches to tall grass/ weeds so these LIDAR halts are quite common – however if there is no connectivity to the autonomous machine it will sit there until the operator goes to find it and allow the machine to progress. Given that most robotic / autonomous systems are at maximum efficiency when a single operator (we like to call them “robot captains”) is looking after between 5 and 15 machines if they have to attend the machines like this it is slow and unproductive. With good quality connectivity the operator can communicate as the machines are designed to – and Connected Farms Hub and Precinct solutions enable this. It’s a specialist area of wireless that Connected Farms have well regarded and proven experience in with leading ag-robotic manufacturers and orchard operators.

For drip feed irrigations and other systems round your operation that require accurate and reliable sensors can be serviced well using Connected Farms AgTech as a service solution.

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