agricultural spraying requires towing of the equipment through the fields
thus damaging lot of plants.
of the pests attack crops after rain. All crops are best sprayed 24-48
hours immediately after the rain but at that time it is also very
difficult or impossible to approach the fields due to mud and hard
terrain. Even when possible this leaves the damage to the approach roads
and fields which is hard to repair.
of the crops (vineyards, raspberries....) are mostly grown under inclined
terrain. These crops cannot be sprayed using any mechanical equipment and
humans need to carry the bottles on their back. It takes 10 hours to spray
1ha of the vineyard.
conventional spraying there is a risk to human health due to exposure to
the liquids and fumes of pesticides.
to the requirement to leave the space between plants for tractors carrying
the spraying equipment, the spacing of the plants is not optimized.
application of the pesticides is to apply maximal amount of the liquid all
over the plot applying the same amount of pesticides for every plant. This
is brute-force method and some individual plants receive more pesticide
than they need. There is a new technology: variable rate application
(VRA), where images from drones are used to determine how much of the pesticide
each plan should receive. This technology is very costly if applied on the
classical machinery and it costs up to 500.000 US$ to fit it on the
some cases application of the pesticides from the ground is not optimal
and application from above the plant roof top would allow for better
spreading of the pesticide reducing the total amount of pesticides used.
are for: vine growers, seed manufacturers, providers of spraying service, all
unmanned flying drone with the capability to lift 50kg of liquid and
to spray the plants from the air at the optimum height just above the
the drone is flying it is not stopped by the mud and hard terrain and can
spray immediately after the rain stops. Therefore the effectivity of the
spraying is maximal and the damage to the field and approach roads is
the drone does not have contact with the plants the damage to plants is
the drone can fly at altitude, the inclination of the slopes presents no
problem, and this would allow very effective spraying especially for
vineyards, raspberries and similar plants. As the classical human spraying
of the vineyard can take up to 10 hours per 1ha (100x100m) of the area and
for drone it takes 1 to 2 hours, the savings on the labor are dramatic.
to the human exposure of dangerous liquids is minimal, the human only have
the contact to the drone while loading and filling the drone which is
minimal. The health and safety risk is greatly reduced.
is possible to fit a variable rate application system to the drone which
would allow for targeted application of pesticides saving the cost on the
pesticides but also lowering the total exposure of the plants and land to
the pesticides. We are planning to do this during this project.
show: spraying from the drones at low altitude and with the steam of air
from the propellers is the most effective way to spray the crops, better
than application from the ground and application from aircraft in the
terms of the coverage of the plants with droplets.
spraying can be fully automated to follow programmed points.