Laser sensors automatically fertilize crops that need it most

We’ve seen RFID tags adapted by Newcastle University in the UK to help farmers keep tabs on their cows, and now CropSpec is a device that uses lasers to detect the growth of crops and apply fertilizer only to the areas where it is required.

Developed by Topcon Precision Agriculture, a US subsidiary of Japan’s Topcon Corporation, the CropSpec sits on top of tractors or other farming vehicles and can sense the amount of nitrogen concentration in the leaves of crops using pulsing laser diodes. The method is contactless and non-destructive, meaning that farmers can analyze their stock without sacrificing any of it. The device automatically applies fertilizer to those areas with low nitrogen readings but not those that don’t need it, meaning users save money and cut down waste. CropSpec also works with other Topcon products that enable the creation of data maps and records that give farmers greater insight into how their crops grow. The following video shows the device in use:

By offering greater analysis of crops, agriculture professionals can benefit from a more detailed understanding of their stock as well as cut costs with minimum effort.


Spotted by: Lily Dixon

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