Smart Farm: Creating the Farm and Farmworkers of the Future

Andy Fell for UC Davis:  MORNING, 2047: WORK IS WELL UNDER WAY as day breaks on this farm in California’s Central Valley. A robotic tractor drives along rows of tomato plants, with a snip-snip-snip as weeds are cut away. A drone hovers over a field, looking for signs of disease. In the feedlot, sensors show which cattle are thriving and which are eating less – an early sign of illness.

From her office, the farm’s manager checks data flowing in on crops and livestock, what is being done and what needs attention. Across the farm, skilled workers tend to machines as well as to plants and animals.

Thanks to technology, this farm of the future produces more food, measured by inputs of land, labor, energy or materials than ever before and does so with less water and less impact on the environment and climate. And it also provides skilled careers for a new generation of farmworkers.

That’s the vision behind the Smart Farm Initiative at the University of California, Davis, one of the “Big Ideas” that the campus hopes will capture the attention of collaborators, donors and supporters.

“Smart Farm is about addressing the grand challenges in agriculture, using technology to increase production of food and renewable energy in the face of a changing climate,” said David Slaughter, professor of biological and agricultural engineering at UC Davis, who is leading the initiative. “What will a farm look like in 50 or 100 years? We have to address population growth, climate change and labor issues, and that has brought a lot of interest in technology.”  Full Article:

Comments (0)

This post does not have any comments. Be the first to leave a comment below.


Post A Comment

You must be logged in before you can post a comment. Login now.

Featured Product

IDS NXT ocean: grab, label, train, run AI

IDS NXT ocean: grab, label, train, run AI

Artificial intelligence can be used, for example, to classify fruit varieties or to identify damaged parts (e.g. apples with marks or colour deviations). To cover all possible variances with classical image processing would be very time-consuming and costly. AI is able to solve these challenges in no time at all. With IDS NXT ocean, there is now a user-friendly complete solution for industrial applications available. It requires neither special knowledge in deep learning nor camera programming.