Cultivation/Production, Equipment/Technology, Trends

Sonar sensors re-purposed to automatically control digging depth during potato harvest

By necessity, farmers are fixers, solvers and constant innovators. Day in and day out, they analyze their farms’ needs, innovate solutions to countless challenges, and dream up ways to make their operations better. So, while I’m always impressed, I’m never surprised when a producer takes an existing technology and sees its value in an entirely new way. Such is the case with sonar sensors, originally designed to control boom height on sprayers. About a decade ago, creative farmers began to realize that, with some modification and a slightly different configuration, sonar sensors could be repurposed to automatically control both digging depth during potato harvest and boom height control during truck loading. The technology improves convenience, decreases tuber damage and improves harvest efficiency. A handful of companies have now tweaked the technology to make it best suit multiple uses. More

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