Global robotics firm FJ Dynamics desires to remodel conventional farming with the ability of information. It has developed a spread of good machines to spice up manufacturing and sustainability whereas decreasing the danger to, and the bodily calls for on farmers.
For years, information has helped farmers resolve when to plant, when to reap, what sorts of crops to develop, how a lot fertilizer and different chemical compounds to make use of, and the way typically to irrigate. Even so, farming has remained a largely inexact pursuit. It’s additionally a troublesome bodily job for many of the world’s farmers who labor within the fields with instruments and equipment.
FJ Dynamics focuses on synthetic intelligence (AI), superior manufacturing, and new power. It is now utilizing information, modeling, and automation to enhance the decision-making and work farmers do.
Acting on information
Using Microsoft Azure Intelligent Cloud Platform, it has constructed an environment friendly and safe Internet of Things (IoT) platform. Autonomous autos and machines with sensors gather, analyze, and act on information. A digital 3D mannequin of a farm is created and used to information autos – like autonomous tractors – to maneuver about and perform work.
A farmer seems on as a wise rice transplanter vegetation a subject with seedlings. Credit: FJ Dynamics.
These digital options should not only for giant farms; even smaller farms can profit from this expertise. With this centralized operational process, yields could be elevated whereas decreasing waste. The outcome means extra environment friendly and sustainable farms.
In China, some farmers have deployed absolutely autonomous rice transplanters. Firstly, a rice subject is measured and digitally mapped. Then comes a means of “path-planning,” which generates an optimized path for the rice transplanter to observe because it sows lots of of seedlings. Meanwhile, sensors on the rice transplanter measure soil nutrient ranges and resolve when fertilizer must be added. This helps stop losing fertilizer whereas guaranteeing the soil’s optimum nutrient composition for rising the rice crops.
Not all clouds are the identical
FJ Dynamics settled on Microsoft Azure as a result of it’s a complete cloud platform overlaying a variety of IoT functions. Microsoft’s international attain was additionally an element.
The expertise supplied by FJ Dynamics could be discovered throughout China. The firm has additionally established footholds in nations like Japan, Indonesia, Zambia, Turkey, Argentina, Sweden, and Denmark. Microsoft has additionally been supporting FJ Dynamics plans to broaden worldwide.
Using Microsoft’s Azure additionally means a farm’s precision information could be simply retrieved and used repeatedly. So lengthy as they’re working on the identical plot of land, the information is out there. All the farmer must do is obtain the map from Azure Cloud, and their good autos, just like the rice transplanter, can begin operations.
“Once you set up a 3D model of the farm, you don’t need to modify it until you do some modification or construction work that alters the plot,” explains FJ Dynamics CEO James Wu. “So you can use it for many years.”
Freed from uncertainty and dangers
Utilizing data-powered good autos additionally helps in threat administration. Growing crops like rice requires farmers to observe strict schedules. Doing in any other case, say due to a labor scarcity, can spell catastrophe for yields.
Smart machines also can tackle some duties that may be hazardous for folks. For instance, pesticides and herbicides could be sprayed routinely and with extra precision, decreasing the quantity of chemical compounds wanted.
Wu can also be hopeful that automation will cut back a number of the laborious, bodily work on farms and so make farming life extra engaging. The COVID-19 pandemic revealed that meals safety is essential. With good expertise to enhance each the productiveness and dealing situations within the agricultural sector, he hopes extra folks will enter the trade.
Working effectivity improves
One Chinese farmer, who produces primarily cotton and soybean, says, “Our working efficiency has improved by 10% since adopting FJ Dynamics smart robots. Since these autonomous agriculture robots can work for 24 hours, it helps reduce the time I spent laboring out in the harsh conditions of the field. Now I can relax and have more time to enjoy my personal life.”
As of now, these merchandise are offered on to the farms, however Wu says that they’re exploring the potential for organising a rental enterprise mannequin to cater to a broader market.
Above all, this joint partnership between FJ Dynamics and Microsoft is pushed by a shared imaginative and prescient to create a greater world for folks by way of expertise. “We are fully aligned with Microsoft’s mission of empowering others. We want to improve the lives of people around the world with technology,” says Wu.