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An application of conductive liquid is made ahead of the tractor, while the rear-mounted generator and electrically charged panels do the plant termination at the back end.  |  Nucrop photo

A shocking way to terminate plants without herbicide interventions

The first people to try electricity to kill unwanted vegetation were the United States-based railroads in the 1890s. Scientists working for the railroads discovered that their new technology, high-voltage electricity, killed weeds dead. Today, 130 years later, scientists are still working to perfect and commercialize electric weed-killing technology. Hybrid electric desiccation is one of the […] Read more

Earlier this month, the world's largest farm equipment maker and the UAW union reached an agreement after weeks of negotiation on wages and other benefits, but 90 percent of the union's workers voted against the deal. | Screencap via

Deere workers go on strike after UAW fails to reach deal

(Reuters) – Thousands of Deere & Co workers began a strike on Thursday, the United Auto Workers (UAW) said, days after overwhelmingly rejecting a six-year labor contract that was agreed on with the tractor maker. Earlier this month, the world’s largest farm equipment maker and the UAW union reached an agreement after weeks of negotiation […] Read more

Large operators sell their used equipment to help finance future technology improvements but they need enough medium-sized operations to buy it. | File photo

Who is left to buy the used iron?

Large farms face a problem as small-to-medium sized farms disappear, according to a new analysis paper from Agri-Food Economic Systems. Large operators sell their used equipment to help finance future technology improvements but they need enough medium-sized operations to buy it. “Wide swaths of farms are being left behind… in the wake of rapid growth […] Read more

The new Equipment Jack from the TireGrabber company lifts up to 30,000 pounds and locks into place. It’s designed to safely hold the machine with its large footprint on the ground.  |  TireGrabber photo

Upgrade your tire change equipment, Jack

Many factors can lead to injury or death when changing big tires on high clearance sprayers, combines or tractors. These tragedies often occur when the jacks or blocking give way. There are distinct trends at play. As the number of farmer-owned sprayers increases, their use in applying nutrients and crop protection products also increases, and […] Read more

The Agerris Digital Farmhand is an autonomous field platform that uses the OpenWeedLocator to find green on brown and take them down. The robot performs two-meter wide spot spraying at the University of Sydney Plant Breeding Institute in Narrabri, NSW, Australia |  University of Sydney photo

Do it yourself green on brown spotting

Open source weed detection for sprayers or precision tillage is based on camera sensors identifying the targets

The design for a green on brown weed locator is now available to anyone who wants to build their own site-specific weed management tool. The OpenWeedLocator (OWL) is an open-source, low-cost image-based approach for fallow weed detection. Guy Coleman from the University of Sydney, Australia, is working on the project. He said the OWL is […] Read more

The Hydra-clamp covering claw from Werk-Brau is managed by a helical actuator that provides up to 54,000 foot pounds torque at 3,000 pounds per square inch.  |  Werk-Brau photo

Clamp down on rolling stones

In regions with rocky soil, headland rock piles are drawing more attention. There’s valuable cropland lying under those stones. In much of the Parkland region, some of the best soil is infested with stones. Stone piles should be moved efficiently and equipment on a typical prairie farm lacks the capability to deal with a major […] Read more

AgJunction's Wheelman systems work with new and used vehicles, and are positioned as a low-cost answer for farmers who need to add more steering systems. | Screencap via

Affordable autosteer adds direction to older gear

Expanding farmers need to add seeding tractors, high clearance sprayers, swathers and combines. And, as a matter of efficiency, all these new machines need some sort of reliable autosteer system. For the seeding tractor, accuracy down to 1.6 inches pass-to pass might be required. But for the sprayer, swather and combine, accuracy down in the […] Read more

Fifty Ontario farmers showed up at Haggerty Creek Ag Services last week for a demonstration of the new Raven OmniDrive autonomous tractor. Raven dealer Chuck Baresich said it was “plenty weird” to drive his combine and have a driverless tractor pull-up alongside. | Haggerty Creek Ag Services photo

Raven ready to roll on with OmniDrive

Farmers can not-drive the driver-less tractor at farm shows but they can see the advantages of doing it

Raven demoed their OmniDrive autonomous technology, installed on a Case Magnum, at this month’s Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois. It gave farmers a chance to experience hands-off driving first-hand. Titan demonstrated the OmniDrive at the Big Iron Farm Show in Fargo, N.D. this week. As the company shows off the system to producers they […] Read more

Raven’s OmniDrive is a real-life autonomous system for tractors and combines.  It’s programmed to automatically pick up the combine at optimal points in the field and shuttle the load to the road.  All this without a driver.  |  Raven photo

And they shoved that thing into OmniDrive

After decades of speculation, the first truly autonomous grain cart tractor is here and put to a farmers’ test

The first Canadian OmniDrive field demo took place Sept. 8 when a group of about 50 farmers got together at Haggerty Creek Agricultural Services, the Raven dealer near Bothwell, Ont. Haggerty Creek co-owner Chuck Baresich admitted that his initial grain cart encounters while driving the combine were weird. “The first thing I learned was that […] Read more

MK1 Engineering has built a prototype four-row planter to test the AeroTube technology and used it to plant corn plots in six Midwestern states this spring. The company is working to increase planting speed from three to five miles per hour (five to eight kilometres per hour). | MK1 Engineering photo

Aerospace know-how focused on seeding

System delivers corn seed tip-first into the row to capture more yield potential and improve weed control

Keith Strang and Mitch Dille had just finished a project in the aerospace industry and were thinking about starting their own company but they needed a problem to solve. Dille, also a farmer, discovered one at a local trade show. A world-record corn grower mentioned a need for a system capable of planting corn seed […] Read more