Search
Close this search box.

We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Wheeled Robot to Automate Crops Measurement

Image credits: beta.nsf.gov

A team of researchers from North Carolina State University and Iowa State University have created a technology that automates the measurement of leaf angles on corn plants in the field. The AngleNet automatic robot helped researchers collect data on leaf angles faster and more efficiently than conventional methods, providing plant breeders with valuable data quickly.

The angle of a plant’s leaves relative to its stem is critical to measure because it impacts the plant’s ability to perform photosynthesis, says Lirong Xiang, an engineer at NC State and lead author of the study.

In corn, for example, vertical leaves at the top and flat leaves further down the stalk increase the plant’s capacity to harvest sunlight. Therefore, plant breeders focusing on plant architecture monitor leaf angles to inform their work.

The researchers compared the leaf angle measurements performed by the robot in a cornfield with those taken by hand to evaluate AngleNet’s accuracy. The angles assessed by AngleNet were found to be within five degrees of the angles measured manually, which is well within the permitted margin of error for plant breeding reasons, the researchers discovered.

“We are already collaborating with several crop experts to use this technology, and we are hopeful that other researchers will be interested in doing the same. Our ultimate objective is to hasten crop yield-improving plant breeding research,” said Xiang.

However, conventional techniques for measuring leaf angles are time-consuming and labour-intensive. Therefore, the researchers wanted to find a way to automate the process. The AngleNet technology comprises two primary components: hardware and software.

The equipment, which is a robotic device on wheels, can move between crop rows that are set 30 inches apart, which is the typical width employed by farmers. To record an additional level of leaves on the surrounding plants, it contains four levels of cameras, each of which is positioned at a different height. To give a stereoscopic view of the leaves and to make 3D modelling of plants easier, each layer has two cameras.

The U.S. National Science Foundation-funded equipment is guided down a row of plants while taking several stereoscopic photographs from various heights of each plant it encounters. A computer programme that calculates the leaf angle for each plant’s leaves at various heights is fed all the visual data.

According to Xiang, plant breeders must know the leaf angle and how far the leaves are from the ground. This information enables them to assess the leaf angle distribution for each row of plants, allowing them to identify genetic lines with desirable or undesirable traits.

The NSF’s Major Research Instrumentation program, according to Robert Fleischmann, a programme director in the division of biological infrastructure, made investments that resulted in developments in robotics and sensing that have a practical impact on farming, plant breeding, and crop production.

Apart from the U.S., some Southeast Asia countries have issued directives on using robotics, sensors, and AI to increase agricultural production. For instance, the government of Vietnam recently conducted a workshop to discuss how integrating artificial intelligence (AI) may significantly advance modern and sustainable agriculture. It can help with the automation and optimisation of farming activities, including but not limited to weather forecasting, keeping track of the health of plants and animals, and improving the quality of the result.

In Indonesia, the development of new, high-tech agricultural machinery incorporating artificial intelligence (AI) has been encouraged. To create better farms where everything can be automated with information technology (IT), electronics, the Internet of Things (IoT), and other fields. The use of precision farming techniques, such as the deployment of aerial drones to apply nutrients and water, represents the next wave of agricultural innovation.

The Thai government’s Office of Economic Promotion and Assistance (depa) trained a new generation of technologically savvy farmers to explore ways to increase farmers’ and enterprises’ use of digital technology.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

As a Titanium Black Partner of Dell Technologies, CTC Global Singapore boasts unparalleled access to resources.

Established in 1972, we bring 52 years of experience to the table, solidifying our position as a leading IT solutions provider in Singapore. With over 300 qualified IT professionals, we are dedicated to delivering integrated solutions that empower your organization in key areas such as Automation & AI, Cyber Security, App Modernization & Data Analytics, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Renowned for our consulting expertise and delivering expert IT solutions, CTC Global Singapore has become the preferred IT outsourcing partner for businesses across Singapore.

PARTNER

Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

PARTNER

HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.