With more investments than ever being pushed into the ag-tech sector, companies are bringing together resources and technology to not only increase efficiency, but also keep environmental targets in mind. Precision AI is one of those companies.
Precision AI’s current endeavour is bridging two emerging technologies, drone technology and green-on-green technology, the latter which is still to gain traction in Canada.
“We’re introducing the world’s first drone spot sprayer that uses artificial intelligence to be able to differentiate – in real time – between what’s a crop and what’s a weed. And as you’re flying over the field that will actually allow you to precision spray the weeds and only the weeds, and save a lot of chemical over what traditional practices either a ground sprayer or even a drone sprayer today,” explains AgTech CEO Daniel McCann.
Right now, work is being done to incorporate green-on-green technology, which through an algorithm can detect and spray only the weeds within a crop, on traditional boom sprayers, but McCann says drones up the ante with this technology and can provide benefits to the farmer that boom sprayers simply cannot.
“First of all, [boom sprayers] are very expensive to put AI technology on them, you’ve got a 160 ft boom, and you need cameras and computers everywhere on there. And that really scales the cost. Whereas with a drone, you can fly a drone over the whole field, so you don’t have that cost. The second benefits of using the drones of the is that you can get to areas that you can’t get to with your ground sprayer,” says McCann.
Although the current project focuses on herbicide applications, McCann says they do have aspirations to have drones capable of spraying insecticides, fungicides and even fertilizer. However, right now their goal is to perfect their current project and redefine, to some degree, how farmers make the most of their operations.
Check out the full conversation between McCann and RealAgriculture’s Brittany Warner, below: