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Bob Larson Drones in Agriculture Pt 2
by Bob Larson, click here for bio

Program: Fruit Grower Report
Date: November 17, 2017

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With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. No longer just a toy, Drones are being developed for use in many industries including agriculture. A recent WSU workshop was held to train potential drone pilots on technology fundamentals, optical sensing, calibration and integration, and FAA regulations.

Dr. Lav Khot says drones are already in use for things like spraying crops …

LAV KHOT … “For example, there’s a company, DGI, they have a drone platform called Argus which is capable of spraying chemicals. Yamaha, from Japan, they have this mid-sized drone that’s just like a helicopter, which has a 9-foot rotor and it lifts a little bit more payload than small drones. They are already using that technology in Japan and the last several years they did do a lot of experiments in California vineyards and this season, they did commercial operations of that one, applying the chemicals surgically in hard to reach areas.”

Dr. Khot says if spraying isn’t always practical, the drones also have very useful imaging capabilities …

LAV KHOT … “The scale of agriculture in the U.S. makes us think a little bit better, that we cannot cover all of the acreage on small or mid-sized drones to spray everything effectively, but then, knowing that you can have drones to image your crop and find the problems, and then only spray that area where there’s a problem, what is called surgical spraying, and that’s where you’ll see some of the uses of this drone technology.”

Tune in tomorrow as Khot gives us more on the future of drone technology in Ag.

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