Due to the lack of precision farming technologies, farmers mostly spray their entire fields with herbicides even though weeds are only present in specific areas. This causes unnecessary costs and environmental pollution, not to mention the eradication of weed species that can include host plants for beneficial insects. Using SAM’s drone imagery and GNSS-based mapping technology, weeds that need to be regulated are precicely identified and appropriate measures can be carried out at the plant level based on their geo-coordinates. This system is financially appealing to farmers as it leads to lower operating costs. Furthermore, the SAM system offers detailed data analyses for additional mapping products, such as in optimised fertilizer application. Authorities can use the mapping system to link recommendations for action and subsidies to ecological services, as is planned in the EU Green Deal.
“The winner of the EUSPA Space for Our Planet Challenge demonstrated an innovative solution for reduction of herbicide use, aligned with the objectives of the Challenge. The solution is close to the market and its technical feasibility was demonstrated through a prototype used under real field conditions. The clear definition of the target market, the applicability of the solution to multiple models of tractors and utilization of drone-based maps not only for immediate herbicide application, were among the strong points of the solution.”
Vojtech Fort, Market Development Innovation Officer, European Union Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA)
Robin Mink, Alexander Linn , Lukáš Kovařík, Lucie Tvarůžková, Tobias Landenberger, Moritz Roth