Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 17

Precision Agriculture Related Abstracts

17 Interference of Mild Drought Stress on Estimation of Nitrogen Status in Winter Wheat by Some Vegetation Indices

Authors: H. Tavakoli, S. S. Mohtasebi, R. Alimardani, R. Gebbers


Nitrogen (N) is one of the most important agricultural inputs affecting crop growth, yield and quality in rain-fed cereal production. N demand of crops varies spatially across fields due to spatial differences in soil conditions. In addition, the response of a crop to the fertilizer applications is heavily reliant on plant available water. Matching N supply to water availability is thus essential to achieve an optimal crop response. The objective of this study was to determine effect of drought stress on estimation of nitrogen status of winter wheat by some vegetation indices. During the 2012 growing season, a field experiment was conducted at the Bundessortenamt (German Plant Variety Office) Marquardt experimental station which is located in the village of Marquardt about 5 km northwest of Potsdam, Germany (52°27' N, 12°57' E). The experiment was designed as a randomized split block design with two replications. Treatments consisted of four N fertilization rates (0, 60, 120 and 240 kg N ha-1, in total) and two water regimes (irrigated (Irr) and non-irrigated (NIrr)) in total of 16 plots with dimension of 4.5 × 9.0 m. The indices were calculated using readings of a spectroradiometer made of tec5 components. The main parts were two “Zeiss MMS1 nir enh” diode-array sensors with a nominal rage of 300 to 1150 nm with less than 10 nm resolutions and an effective range of 400 to 1000 nm. The following vegetation indices were calculated: NDVI, GNDVI, SR, MSR, NDRE, RDVI, REIP, SAVI, OSAVI, MSAVI, and PRI. All the experiments were conducted during the growing season in different plant growth stages including: stem elongation (BBCH=32-41), booting stage (BBCH=43), inflorescence emergence, heading (BBCH=56-58), flowering (BBCH=65-69), and development of fruit (BBCH=71). According to the results obtained, among the indices, NDRE and REIP were less affected by drought stress and can provide reliable wheat nitrogen status information, regardless of water status of the plant. They also showed strong relations with nitrogen status of winter wheat.

Keywords: Precision Agriculture, drought stress, nitrogen status, vegetation indices

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16 Pervasive Computing: Model to Increase Arable Crop Yield through Detection Intrusion System (IDS)

Authors: Idowu Olugbenga Adewumi, Foluke Iyabo Oluwatoyinbo


Presently, there are several discussions on the food security with increase in yield of arable crop throughout the world. This article, briefly present research efforts to create digital interfaces to nature, in particular to area of crop production in agriculture with increase in yield with interest on pervasive computing. The approach goes beyond the use of sensor networks for environmental monitoring but also by emphasizing the development of a system architecture that detect intruder (Intrusion Process) which reduce the yield of the farmer at the end of the planting/harvesting period. The objective of the work is to set a model for setting up the hand held or portable device for increasing the quality and quantity of arable crop. This process incorporates the use of infrared motion image sensor with security alarm system which can send a noise signal to intruder on the farm. This model of the portable image sensing device in monitoring or scaring human, rodent, birds and even pests activities will reduce post harvest loss which will increase the yield on farm. The nano intelligence technology was proposed to combat and minimize intrusion process that usually leads to low quality and quantity of produce from farm. Intranet system will be in place with wireless radio (WLAN), router, server, and client computer system or hand held device e.g PDAs or mobile phone. This approach enables the development of hybrid systems which will be effective as a security measure on farm. Since, precision agriculture has developed with the computerization of agricultural production systems and the networking of computerized control systems. In the intelligent plant production system of controlled greenhouses, information on plant responses, measured by sensors, is used to optimize the system. Further work must be carry out on modeling using pervasive computing environment to solve problems of agriculture, as the use of electronics in agriculture will attracts more youth involvement in the industry.

Keywords: Pervasive Computing, Security, Intrusion Detection, Precision Agriculture, arable crop

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15 Algorithm for Improved Tree Counting and Detection through Adaptive Machine Learning Approach with the Integration of Watershed Transformation and Local Maxima Analysis

Authors: Ricardo Villar, Jigg Pelayo


The Philippines is long considered as a valuable producer of high value crops globally. The country’s employment and economy have been dependent on agriculture, thus increasing its demand for the efficient agricultural mechanism. Remote sensing and geographic information technology have proven to effectively provide applications for precision agriculture through image-processing technique considering the development of the aerial scanning technology in the country. Accurate information concerning the spatial correlation within the field is very important for precision farming of high value crops, especially. The availability of height information and high spatial resolution images obtained from aerial scanning together with the development of new image analysis methods are offering relevant influence to precision agriculture techniques and applications. In this study, an algorithm was developed and implemented to detect and count high value crops simultaneously through adaptive scaling of support vector machine (SVM) algorithm subjected to object-oriented approach combining watershed transformation and local maxima filter in enhancing tree counting and detection. The methodology is compared to cutting-edge template matching algorithm procedures to demonstrate its effectiveness on a demanding tree is counting recognition and delineation problem. Since common data and image processing techniques are utilized, thus can be easily implemented in production processes to cover large agricultural areas. The algorithm is tested on high value crops like Palm, Mango and Coconut located in Misamis Oriental, Philippines - showing a good performance in particular for young adult and adult trees, significantly 90% above. The s inventories or database updating, allowing for the reduction of field work and manual interpretation tasks.

Keywords: Lidar, Precision Agriculture, OBIA, high value crop

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14 Field Environment Sensing and Modeling for Pears towards Precision Agriculture

Authors: Tatsuya Yamazaki, Kazuya Miyakawa, Tomohiko Sugiyama, Toshitaka Iwatani


The introduction of sensor technologies into agriculture is a necessary step to realize Precision Agriculture. Although sensing methodologies themselves have been prevailing owing to miniaturization and reduction in costs of sensors, there are some difficulties to analyze and understand the sensing data. Targeting at pears ’Le Lectier’, which is particular to Niigata in Japan, cultivation environmental data have been collected at pear fields by eight sorts of sensors: field temperature, field humidity, rain gauge, soil water potential, soil temperature, soil moisture, inner-bag temperature, and inner-bag humidity sensors. With regard to the inner-bag temperature and humidity sensors, they are used to measure the environment inside the fruit bag used for pre-harvest bagging of pears. In this experiment, three kinds of fruit bags were used for the pre-harvest bagging. After over 100 days continuous measurement, volumes of sensing data have been collected. Firstly, correlation analysis among sensing data measured by respective sensors reveals that one sensor can replace another sensor so that more efficient and cost-saving sensing systems can be proposed to pear farmers. Secondly, differences in characteristic and performance of the three kinds of fruit bags are clarified by the measurement results by the inner-bag environmental sensing. It is found that characteristic and performance of the inner-bags significantly differ from each other by statistical analysis. Lastly, a relational model between the sensing data and the pear outlook quality is established by use of Structural Equation Model (SEM). Here, the pear outlook quality is related with existence of stain, blob, scratch, and so on caused by physiological impair or diseases. Conceptually SEM is a combination of exploratory factor analysis and multiple regression. By using SEM, a model is constructed to connect independent and dependent variables. The proposed SEM model relates the measured sensing data and the pear outlook quality determined on the basis of farmer judgement. In particularly, it is found that the inner-bag humidity variable relatively affects the pear outlook quality. Therefore, inner-bag humidity sensing might help the farmers to control the pear outlook quality. These results are supported by a large quantity of inner-bag humidity data measured over the years 2014, 2015, and 2016. The experimental and analytical results in this research contribute to spreading Precision Agriculture technologies among the farmers growing ’Le Lectier’.

Keywords: Precision Agriculture, Sensor Fusion, structural equation model, pre-harvest bagging

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13 Advances of Image Processing in Precision Agriculture: Using Deep Learning Convolution Neural Network for Soil Nutrient Classification

Authors: Halimatu S. Abdullahi, Ray E. Sheriff, Fatima Mahieddine


Agriculture is essential to the continuous existence of human life as they directly depend on it for the production of food. The exponential rise in population calls for a rapid increase in food with the application of technology to reduce the laborious work and maximize production. Technology can aid/improve agriculture in several ways through pre-planning and post-harvest by the use of computer vision technology through image processing to determine the soil nutrient composition, right amount, right time, right place application of farm input resources like fertilizers, herbicides, water, weed detection, early detection of pest and diseases etc. This is precision agriculture which is thought to be solution required to achieve our goals. There has been significant improvement in the area of image processing and data processing which has being a major challenge. A database of images is collected through remote sensing, analyzed and a model is developed to determine the right treatment plans for different crop types and different regions. Features of images from vegetations need to be extracted, classified, segmented and finally fed into the model. Different techniques have been applied to the processes from the use of neural network, support vector machine, fuzzy logic approach and recently, the most effective approach generating excellent results using the deep learning approach of convolution neural network for image classifications. Deep Convolution neural network is used to determine soil nutrients required in a plantation for maximum production. The experimental results on the developed model yielded results with an average accuracy of 99.58%.

Keywords: Image Analysis, Validation, Feature Extraction, Precision Agriculture, convolution

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12 Calculation of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index and the Spectral Signature of Coffee Crops: Benefits of Image Filtering on Mixed Crops

Authors: Giacomo Barbieri, Catalina Albornoz


Crop monitoring has shown to reduce vulnerability to spreading plagues and pathologies in crops. Remote sensing with Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) has made crop monitoring more precise, cost-efficient and accessible. Nowadays, remote monitoring involves calculating maps of vegetation indices by using different software that takes either Truecolor (RGB) or multispectral images as an input. These maps are then used to segment the crop into management zones. Finally, knowing the spectral signature of a crop (the reflected radiation as a function of wavelength) can be used as an input for decision-making and crop characterization. The calculation of vegetation indices using software such as Pix4D has high precision for monoculture plantations. However, this paper shows that using this software on mixed crops may lead to errors resulting in an incorrect segmentation of the field. Within this work, authors propose to filter all the elements different from the main crop before the calculation of vegetation indices and the spectral signature. A filter based on the Sobel method for border detection is used for filtering a coffee crop. Results show that segmentation into management zones changes with respect to the traditional situation in which a filter is not applied. In particular, it is shown how the values of the spectral signature change in up to 17% per spectral band. Future work will quantify the benefits of filtering through the comparison between in situ measurements and the calculated vegetation indices obtained through remote sensing.

Keywords: Remote Sensing, Precision Agriculture, Filtering, coffee, mixed crop, spectral signature

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11 Using Deep Learning Real-Time Object Detection Convolution Neural Networks for Fast Fruit Recognition in the Tree

Authors: K. Bresilla, L. Manfrini, B. Morandi, A. Boini, G. Perulli, L. C. Grappadelli


Image/video processing for fruit in the tree using hard-coded feature extraction algorithms have shown high accuracy during recent years. While accurate, these approaches even with high-end hardware are computationally intensive and too slow for real-time systems. This paper details the use of deep convolution neural networks (CNNs), specifically an algorithm (YOLO - You Only Look Once) with 24+2 convolution layers. Using deep-learning techniques eliminated the need for hard-code specific features for specific fruit shapes, color and/or other attributes. This CNN is trained on more than 5000 images of apple and pear fruits on 960 cores GPU (Graphical Processing Unit). Testing set showed an accuracy of 90%. After this, trained data were transferred to an embedded device (Raspberry Pi gen.3) with camera for more portability. Based on correlation between number of visible fruits or detected fruits on one frame and the real number of fruits on one tree, a model was created to accommodate this error rate. Speed of processing and detection of the whole platform was higher than 40 frames per second. This speed is fast enough for any grasping/harvesting robotic arm or other real-time applications.

Keywords: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Precision Agriculture, Deep learning, fruit recognition, harvesting robot

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10 Topographic Mapping of Farmland by Integration of Multiple Sensors on Board Low-Altitude Unmanned Aerial System

Authors: Mengmeng Du, Noboru Noguchi, Hiroshi Okamoto, Noriko Kobayashi


This paper introduced a topographic mapping system with time-saving and simplicity advantages based on integration of Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data and Post Processing Kinematic Global Positioning System (PPK GPS) data. This topographic mapping system used a low-altitude Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) as a platform to conduct land survey in a low-cost, efficient, and totally autonomous manner. An experiment in a small-scale sugarcane farmland was conducted in Queensland, Australia. Subsequently, we synchronized LiDAR distance measurements that were corrected by using attitude information from gyroscope with PPK GPS coordinates for generation of precision topographic maps, which could be further utilized for such applications like precise land leveling and drainage management. The results indicated that LiDAR distance measurements and PPK GPS altitude reached good accuracy of less than 0.015 m.

Keywords: Land Survey, Precision Agriculture, Unmanned aerial vehicle, Topographic Map, Light Detection and Ranging, post processing kinematic global positioning system

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9 Estimation of Soil Nutrient Content Using Google Earth and Pleiades Satellite Imagery for Small Farms

Authors: Lucas Barbosa Da Silva, Jun Okamoto Jr.


Precision Agriculture has long being benefited from crop fields’ aerial imagery. This important tool has allowed identifying patterns in crop fields, generating useful information to the production management. Reflectance intensity data in different ranges from the electromagnetic spectrum may indicate presence or absence of nutrients in the soil of an area. Different relations between the different light bands may generate even more detailed information. The knowledge of the nutrients content in the soil or in the crop during its growth is a valuable asset to the farmer that seeks to optimize its yield. However, small farmers in Brazil often lack the resources to access this kind information, and, even when they do, it is not presented in a comprehensive and/or objective way. So, the challenges of implementing this technology ranges from the sampling of the imagery, using aerial platforms, building of a mosaic with the images to cover the entire crop field, extracting the reflectance information from it and analyzing its relationship with the parameters of interest, to the display of the results in a manner that the farmer may take the necessary decisions more objectively. In this work, it’s proposed an analysis of soil nutrient contents based on image processing of satellite imagery and comparing its outtakes with commercial laboratory’s chemical analysis. Also, sources of satellite imagery are compared, to assess the feasibility of using Google Earth data in this application, and the impacts of doing so, versus the application of imagery from satellites like Landsat-8 and Pleiades. Furthermore, an algorithm for building mosaics is implemented using Google Earth imagery and finally, the possibility of using unmanned aerial vehicles is analyzed. From the data obtained, some soil parameters are estimated, namely, the content of Potassium, Phosphorus, Boron, Manganese, among others. The suitability of Google Earth Imagery for this application is verified within a reasonable margin, when compared to Pleiades Satellite imagery and to the current commercial model. It is also verified that the mosaic construction method has little or no influence on the estimation results. Variability maps are created over the covered area and the impacts of the image resolution and sample time frame are discussed, allowing easy assessments of the results. The final results show that easy and cheaper remote sensing and analysis methods are possible and feasible alternatives for the small farmer, with little access to technological and/or financial resources, to make more accurate decisions about soil nutrient management.

Keywords: Remote Sensing, Soil, Precision Agriculture, Satellite Imagery, mosaic, nutrient content, aerial imagery

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8 Disease Level Assessment in Wheat Plots Using a Residual Deep Learning Algorithm

Authors: Felipe A. Guth, Shane Ward, Kevin McDonnell


The assessment of disease levels in crop fields is an important and time-consuming task that generally relies on expert knowledge of trained individuals. Image classification in agriculture problems historically has been based on classical machine learning strategies that make use of hand-engineered features in the top of a classification algorithm. This approach tends to not produce results with high accuracy and generalization to the classes classified by the system when the nature of the elements has a significant variability. The advent of deep convolutional neural networks has revolutionized the field of machine learning, especially in computer vision tasks. These networks have great resourcefulness of learning and have been applied successfully to image classification and object detection tasks in the last years. The objective of this work was to propose a new method based on deep learning convolutional neural networks towards the task of disease level monitoring. Common RGB images of winter wheat were obtained during a growing season. Five categories of disease levels presence were produced, in collaboration with agronomists, for the algorithm classification. Disease level tasks performed by experts provided ground truth data for the disease score of the same winter wheat plots were RGB images were acquired. The system had an overall accuracy of 84% on the discrimination of the disease level classes.

Keywords: Precision Agriculture, Deep learning, crop disease assessment, residual neural networks

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7 A Case Study of Deep Learning for Disease Detection in Crops

Authors: Felipe A. Guth, Shane Ward, Kevin McDonnell


In the precision agriculture area, one of the main tasks is the automated detection of diseases in crops. Machine Learning algorithms have been studied in recent decades for such tasks in view of their potential for improving economic outcomes that automated disease detection may attain over crop fields. The latest generation of deep learning convolution neural networks has presented significant results in the area of image classification. In this way, this work has tested the implementation of an architecture of deep learning convolution neural network for the detection of diseases in different types of crops. A data augmentation strategy was used to meet the requirements of the algorithm implemented with a deep learning framework. Two test scenarios were deployed. The first scenario implemented a neural network under images extracted from a controlled environment while the second one took images both from the field and the controlled environment. The results evaluated the generalisation capacity of the neural networks in relation to the two types of images presented. Results yielded a general classification accuracy of 59% in scenario 1 and 96% in scenario 2.

Keywords: Precision Agriculture, Deep learning, Disease Detection, Convolutional Neural Networks

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6 The Role Played by Awareness and Complexity through the Use of a Logistic Regression Analysis

Authors: Yari Vecchio, Margherita Masi, Jorgelina Di Pasquale


Adoption of Precision Agriculture (PA) is involved in a multidimensional and complex scenario. The process of adopting innovations is complex and social inherently, influenced by other producers, change agents, social norms and organizational pressure. Complexity depends on factors that interact and influence the decision to adopt. Farm and operator characteristics, as well as organizational, informational and agro-ecological context directly affect adoption. This influence has been studied to measure drivers and to clarify 'bottlenecks' of the adoption of agricultural innovation. Making decision process involves a multistage procedure, in which individual passes from first hearing about the technology to final adoption. Awareness is the initial stage and represents the moment in which an individual learns about the existence of the technology. 'Static' concept of adoption has been overcome. Awareness is a precondition to adoption. This condition leads to not encountering some erroneous evaluations, arose from having carried out analysis on a population that is only in part aware of technologies. In support of this, the present study puts forward an empirical analysis among Italian farmers, considering awareness as a prerequisite for adoption. The purpose of the present work is to analyze both factors that affect the probability to adopt and determinants that drive an aware individual to not adopt. Data were collected through a questionnaire submitted in November 2017. A preliminary descriptive analysis has shown that high levels of adoption have been found among younger farmers, better educated, with high intensity of information, with large farm size and high labor-intensive, and whose perception of the complexity of adoption process is lower. The use of a logit model permits to appreciate the weight played by the intensity of labor and complexity perceived by the potential adopter in PA adoption process. All these findings suggest important policy implications: measures dedicated to promoting innovation will need to be more specific for each phase of this adoption process. Specifically, they should increase awareness of PA tools and foster dissemination of information to reduce the degree of perceived complexity of the adoption process. These implications are particularly important in Europe where is pre-announced the reform of Common Agricultural Policy, oriented to innovation. In this context, these implications suggest to the measures supporting innovation to consider the relationship between various organizational and structural dimensions of European agriculture and innovation approaches.

Keywords: Complexity, Precision Agriculture, awareness, Adoption

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5 Comparison of Classical Computer Vision vs. Convolutional Neural Networks Approaches for Weed Mapping in Aerial Images

Authors: Paulo Cesar Pereira Junior, Alexandre Monteiro, Rafael da Luz Ribeiro, Antonio Carlos Sobieranski, Aldo von Wangenheim


In this paper, we present a comparison between convolutional neural networks and classical computer vision approaches, for the specific precision agriculture problem of weed mapping on sugarcane fields aerial images. A systematic literature review was conducted to find which computer vision methods are being used on this specific problem. The most cited methods were implemented, as well as four models of convolutional neural networks. All implemented approaches were tested using the same dataset, and their results were quantitatively and qualitatively analyzed. The obtained results were compared to a human expert made ground truth for validation. The results indicate that the convolutional neural networks present better precision and generalize better than the classical models.

Keywords: Digital Image Processing, Precision Agriculture, Deep learning, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Convolutional Neural Networks, semantic segmentation

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4 Introducing Global Navigation Satellite System Capabilities into IoT Field-Sensing Infrastructures for Advanced Precision Agriculture Services

Authors: Savvas Rogotis, Nikolaos Kalatzis, Stergios Dimou-Sakellariou, Nikolaos Marianos


As precision holds the key for the introduction of distinct benefits in agriculture (e.g., energy savings, reduced labor costs, optimal application of inputs, improved products, and yields), it steadily becomes evident that new initiatives should focus on rendering Precision Agriculture (PA) more accessible to the average farmer. PA leverages on technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), earth observation, robotics and positioning systems (e.g., the Global Navigation Satellite System – GNSS - as well as individual positioning systems like GPS, Glonass, Galileo) that allow: from simple data georeferencing to optimal navigation of agricultural machinery to even more complex tasks like Variable Rate Applications. An identified customer pain point is that, from one hand, typical triangulation-based positioning systems are not accurate enough (with errors up to several meters), while on the other hand, high precision positioning systems reaching centimeter-level accuracy, are very costly (up to thousands of euros). Within this paper, a Ground-Based Augmentation System (GBAS) is introduced, that can be adapted to any existing IoT field-sensing station infrastructure. The latter should cover a minimum set of requirements, and in particular, each station should operate as a fixed, obstruction-free towards the sky, energy supplying unit. Station augmentation will allow them to function in pairs with GNSS rovers following the differential GNSS base-rover paradigm. This constitutes a key innovation element for the proposed solution that encompasses differential GNSS capabilities into an IoT field-sensing infrastructure. Integrating this kind of information supports the provision of several additional PA beneficial services such as spatial mapping, route planning, and automatic field navigation of unmanned vehicles (UVs). Right at the heart of the designed system, there is a high-end GNSS toolkit with base-rover variants and Real-Time Kinematic (RTK) capabilities. The GNSS toolkit had to tackle all availability, performance, interfacing, and energy-related challenges that are faced for a real-time, low-power, and reliable in the field operation. Specifically, in terms of performance, preliminary findings exhibit a high rover positioning precision that can even reach less than 10-centimeters. As this precision is propagated to the full dataset collection, it enables tractors, UVs, Android-powered devices, and measuring units to deal with challenging real-world scenarios. The system is validated with the help of Gaiatrons, a mature network of agro-climatic telemetry stations with presence all over Greece and beyond ( > 60.000ha of agricultural land covered) that constitutes part of “gaiasense” ( smart farming (SF) solution. Gaiatrons constantly monitor atmospheric and soil parameters, thus, providing exact fit to operational requirements asked from modern SF infrastructures. Gaiatrons are ultra-low-cost, compact, and energy-autonomous stations with a modular design that enables the integration of advanced GNSS base station capabilities on top of them. A set of demanding pilot demonstrations has been initiated in Stimagka, Greece, an area with a diverse geomorphological landscape where grape cultivation is particularly popular. Pilot demonstrations are in the course of validating the preliminary system findings in its intended environment, tackle all technical challenges, and effectively highlight the added-value offered by the system in action.

Keywords: Precision Agriculture, GNSS, Smart Farming, GBAS, RTK

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3 Intelligent System and Renewable Energy: A Farming Platform in Precision Agriculture

Authors: Ryan B. Escorial, Elmer A. Maravillas, Chris Jordan G. Aliac


This study presents a small-scale water pumping system utilizing a fuzzy logic inference system attached to a renewable energy source. The fuzzy logic controller was designed and simulated in MATLAB fuzzy logic toolbox to examine the properties and characteristics of the input and output variables. The result of the simulation was implemented in a microcontroller, together with sensors, modules, and photovoltaic cells. The study used a grand rapid variety of lettuce, organic substrates, and foliar for observation of the capability of the device to irrigate crops. Two plant boxes intended for manual and automated irrigation were prepared with each box having 48 heads of lettuce. The observation of the system took 22-31 days, which is one harvest period of the crop. Results showed a 22.55% increase in agricultural productivity compared to manual irrigation. Aside from reducing human effort, and time, the smart irrigation system could help lessen some of the shortcomings of manual irrigations. It could facilitate the economical utilization of water, reducing consumption by 25%. The use of renewable energy could also help farmers reduce the cost of production by minimizing the use of diesel and gasoline.

Keywords: Renewable Energy, Fuzzy Logic, Intelligent System, Precision Agriculture

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2 Explanation of Sentinel-1 Sigma 0 by Sentinel-2 Products in Terms of Crop Water Stress Monitoring

Authors: Katerina Krizova, Inigo Molina


The ongoing climate change affects various natural processes resulting in significant changes in human life. Since there is still a growing human population on the planet with more or less limited resources, agricultural production became an issue and a satisfactory amount of food has to be reassured. To achieve this, agriculture is being studied in a very wide context. The main aim here is to increase primary production on a spatial unit while consuming as low amounts of resources as possible. In Europe, nowadays, the staple issue comes from significantly changing the spatial and temporal distribution of precipitation. Recent growing seasons have been considerably affected by long drought periods that have led to quantitative as well as qualitative yield losses. To cope with such kind of conditions, new techniques and technologies are being implemented in current practices. However, behind assessing the right management, there is always a set of the necessary information about plot properties that need to be acquired. Remotely sensed data had gained attention in recent decades since they provide spatial information about the studied surface based on its spectral behavior. A number of space platforms have been launched carrying various types of sensors. Spectral indices based on calculations with reflectance in visible and NIR bands are nowadays quite commonly used to describe the crop status. However, there is still the staple limit by this kind of data - cloudiness. Relatively frequent revisit of modern satellites cannot be fully utilized since the information is hidden under the clouds. Therefore, microwave remote sensing, which can penetrate the atmosphere, is on its rise today. The scientific literature describes the potential of radar data to estimate staple soil (roughness, moisture) and vegetation (LAI, biomass, height) properties. Although all of these are highly demanded in terms of agricultural monitoring, the crop moisture content is the utmost important parameter in terms of agricultural drought monitoring. The idea behind this study was to exploit the unique combination of SAR (Sentinel-1) and optical (Sentinel-2) data from one provider (ESA) to describe potential crop water stress during dry cropping season of 2019 at six winter wheat plots in the central Czech Republic. For the period of January to August, Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 images were obtained and processed. Sentinel-1 imagery carries information about C-band backscatter in two polarisations (VV, VH). Sentinel-2 was used to derive vegetation properties (LAI, FCV, NDWI, and SAVI) as support for Sentinel-1 results. For each term and plot, summary statistics were performed, including precipitation data and soil moisture content obtained through data loggers. Results were presented as summary layouts of VV and VH polarisations and related plots describing other properties. All plots performed along with the principle of the basic SAR backscatter equation. Considering the needs of practical applications, the vegetation moisture content may be assessed using SAR data to predict the drought impact on the final product quality and yields independently of cloud cover over the studied scene.

Keywords: Remote Sensing, Precision Agriculture, SAR, Water Content, Sentinel-1

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1 Management Effects on Different Sustainable Agricultural with Diverse Topography

Authors: Alexandra Krvchenko, Kusay Wheib


Crop yields are influenced by many factors, including natural ones, such as soil and environmental characteristics of the agricultural land, as well as manmade ones, such as management applications. One of the factors that frequently affect crop yields in undulating Midwest landscapes is topography, which controls the movement of water and nutrients necessary for plant life. The main objective of this study is to examine how field topography influences performance of different management practices in undulated terrain of southwest Michigan. A total of 26 agricultural fields, ranging in size from 1.1 to 7.4 ha, from the Scale-Up at Kellogg Biological Station were included in the study. The two studied factors were crop species with three levels, i.e., corn (Zea mays L.) soybean (Glycine max L.), and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), and management practice with three levels, i.e., conventional, low input, and organic managements. They were compared under three contrasting topographical settings, namely, summit (includes summits and shoulders), slope (includes backslopes), and depression (includes footslope and toeslope). Yield data of years 2007 through 2012 was processed, cleaned, and filtered, average yield then was calculated for each field, topographic setting, and year. Topography parameters, including terrain, slope, curvature, flow direction and wetness index were computed under ArcGIS environment for each topographic class of each field to seek their effects on yield. Results showed that topographical depressions produced greatest yields in most studied fields, while managements with chemical inputs, both low input and conventional, resulted in higher yields than the organic management.

Keywords: Sustainable Agriculture, Precision Agriculture, Yield, Topography

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