AN AUTOMATIC STEERING SYSTEM FOR THE INTER-ROW CROP CULTIVATION OF COTTON
Mar 10, 2017

Agronomy & physiology WCRC Agro-physio-australia WCRC1
Abstract                                                                         Back to Table of contents

A vision guidance system has been designed, built and commissioned which steers a tractor relative to the rows of a crop such as cotton.  It was required to be insensitive to additional visual "noise" from weeds, while tolerating the fading out of one or more rows in a barren patch of the field.  The system integrates data from several crop rows, testing for image quality.  At the same time, the data processing requirements have been limited by the use of frame-sequential strategies to reduce the image space which must be processed.  The current prototype employs an embedded 386 PC notebook computer and shows great promise of cost effective commercial exploitation.

Experimental results are reported and further sensing systems are explored to enhance performance in difficult environments.

Conclusion

A program of research combining theory and experimentation has resulted in the verification of a practical guidance system, despite early limitations of very meagre resources.  Now that adequate funding has been allocated, the system can be prototyped to professional standards and its performance enhanced to achieve industry acceptance.

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