Faster starting and tighter lines for Trimble RTK upgrade

Trimble expanded its CenterPoint RTX Fast subscription service into southern Canada and can now provide users two centimetres of accuracy with less than two minutes of initialization time.

Michael Bruno of Trimble said the service takes the benefits of satellite-based services, (no need for additional hardware like a base station), and also provides the accuracy of a real-time kinematic system.

“Once the thing is configured you kind of turn it on and run with it. That simplicity is as if it were satellite delivered, but it’s able to achieve the repeatable accuracy that RTK has been able to provide,” Bruno said.

A downside of satellite service-based systems is their initialization time.

“When you turn on the receiver it may start at one meter, and then generally in 30 minutes most services are able to get to their stated accuracy level,” Bruno said.

“With CenterPoint RTX if you weren’t in the fast network it was under 20 minutes, but with CenterPoint RTX Fast we’re able to essentially eliminate any of that start up time so it really performs like RTK would, where you turn on the tractor and within a few minutes you’re at full accuracy, ready to plant or ready to spray.”

He said Trimble CenterPoint RTX receivers use GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou and QZSS as well as cell signals to ensure the corrections are available when needed.

Along with the two centimetres horizontal accuracy, the system can also achieve five centimetres vertical accuracy.

“Realistically you can use the CenterPoint RTX for any work flow on the farm that is not super vertically intensive. So if you’re doing water management or tiling or things like that Trimble will still recommend having a base station in the field,” Bruno said.

“We have farmers using it for peanut farming, for potatoes, we have people doing strip till or inter-row sowing. The true really high accuracy work flows for broad acre and row crops, CenterPoint RTX doesn’t have a problem handling.”

Trimble offers subscriptions for three different accuracy levels.

The basic accuracy level is included with any piece of Trimble hardware that gives users access to the Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) satellites, or they can use the company’s range point correction that is CenterPoint but with different accuracy.

“You can then step up to the intermediate licence and that lets you use CenterPoint standard convergence, so that’s to 2.5 centimetres in less than 20 minutes,” Bruno said.

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