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Changing Role Of Robotics In European Agriculture
FREMONT, CA: Traditional practices associated with agriculture are changing rapidly in Europe. With the development of robotics, the region is gearing up for increased incorporation of intelligent, autonomous equipment into agriculture. The European robotics industry is one of the most advanced in the world, and the region has seen a significant application of robotics to several fields. The agricultural sector, which is currently facing several challenges, including that of labour shortage, can find its solutions through robotics. Expertise in robotics technology has enabled companies in the region to come up with innovative systems that are exclusively designed to cater to the farming sector. Some of the innovations are listed below.
Robotic Harvesting Systems
Timely harvesting of crop-produce is one of the most crucial parts of farming. Early or delayed harvests have major repercussions and often lead to wastage of the yield. The traditional process of harvesting involves manual plucking of fruits, vegetable, and food grains after assessing their readiness. Although effective, the process is time-consuming and resource-intensive. Several workers have to be deployed in the fields to carry out the task. Harvesting can be speeded up with robotic harvesting systems. Many agritech companies have developed efficient automated harvesting systems that possess the intelligence to determine if the produce is ready for harvest. If found ready, the systems can efficiently pick the fruits or vegetables without human interference. The robots are developed with the help of smart sensors and powerful cameras. Since robots are faster than workers and work tirelessly for long hours, farmers can increase productivity.
Robotic Monitoring Systems
Crops have to be monitored continually to ensure the best yields. The bigger the area under cultivation, the more difficult it becomes to monitor the crop. However, Europe has been able to deploy robotic technology to find feasible and intelligent solutions for monitoring. Robotic devices are able to monitor and accumulate information regarding the application of chemical, soil condition, the health of plants, and moisture content. Unmanned ground vehicles are being developed by firms that can effectively undertake the monitoring task and assist farmers with activities like pruning, and thinning. The robotic monitoring systems also empower farmers with comprehensive reports regarding the overall health of the crop throughout its lifecycle. Europe has extensive farms that grow fruits. Vineyards form a major part of the farming landscape as well. Development of appropriate equipment requires high degrees of expertise in robotics that European technology companies are now offering to the farmers. Deployment of sensors, artificial intelligence programmes, and energy-efficient engines in robots are redefining crop monitoring and maintenance.
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Tractors are the most widely used agricultural equipment across the world. In a bid to improve the functionalities of the tractor, Europe is transforming the tractor into a robot that is capable of undertaking several critical tasks in agriculture with high degrees of accuracy. While many companies are developing autonomous vehicles, many others have already conducted successful trials. These robotic vehicles are costly but are expected to be extremely valuable assets. Adorned with powerful cameras and sensors, the tractors can sense obstacles and navigate through fields easily. Although autonomous, some amount of control is essential to optimise the utility of the tractors.
The European market for robotic agricultural machinery is still in its nascent stage but, is expected to see a rapid rise as the demand for automation grows. While prices of agricultural labourers rise, the cost of technology will fall, enabling farmers to revive farming with advanced robotic solutions.