Cost saving - variable-rate spot spraying with a traditional sprayer? Yes, it is possible with the help of Proofminder!
Precision spraying is not only possible with drones and high-tech self-propelled sprayers. It is achievable for everyone with minimal preparation and a small workaround. If you have GPS and a traditional sprayer which is capable of section control, we have good news for you: you have the equipment to do spot praying and save up to 70% on chemicals.
Proofminder offers a solution for growers with traditional sprayers that will help them engage the full potential of their equipment, save significantly on weedkillers, and at the same time, reduce the impact of chemicals on the environment. From agronomical and economical perspectives, every drop of chemical that doesn’t land on the targeted weed is a waste. As such, it would be counterproductive and wasteful to use the same rate of chemicals on the entire field. The rate should be proportionate with the density of the targeted weeds. If we can reduce chemical usage by 50% on every hectare, we can spray twice as large of an area with the same amount and since fewer refills are needed, we can also save precious time. This also means cost saving in economically challenging times.
Figure 1 – Creeping thistle (Cirsium arvense) identified by AI in corn
If you own a commercially available drone, or you have access to a drone service provider in your area, all you will need to do is capture your field (we will provide the necessary specifications for the flight) before spraying and upload the pictures to Proofminder’s platform. Proofminder has a unique cloud-based platform which uses AI technology to identify different type of weeds and extract their coordinates. Using this tool Proofminder can generate a weed density map with the exact GPS coordinates of the different weeds. You may also filter for several types of weeds to decide which chemicals should be applied on different parts of your field.
Figure 2 – Creeping thistle spots identified by Proofminder AI model
As a next step, Proofminder exports the weeds’ coordinates to a format which is compatible with your traditional sprayer. You are now ready to utilize our spraying map with your machine. Enjoy your savings of time and money.
We performed a field trial in Hungary, focused on spot spraying. A drone service provider captured images of a larger farm and uploaded the images to Proofminder’s platform. The automated evaluation and result generation took place during the night after the image capturing mission, and the customer received the results the next morning.
The team responsible for spraying could now load the spraying map into their tractor which is operating a Horsch sprayer and is equipped with the John Deere controller.
This solution can be applied to several controllers of different manufacturers, and Proofminder is constantly working on extending the list of compatible controllers.
Pictured below, are two neighbouring fields with different weed densities where the mentioned field trial took place. The amount of chemicals applied is directly proportionate to weed density. The field on the left was only slightly infected with creeping thistle and as such, only a smaller portion of it had to be sprayed. However, the field on the right was heavily covered with thistle, but the weed density was varied, therefore a custom rate of chemicals was applied to save on chemicals, which could not have been achieved if the entire area would have been sprayed with an even amount.
Figure 4 – Prescription map generated by Proofminder AI model for variable spot spraying with traditional sprayer
Contact us today to implement the precision spot spraying and save your budget.