Drones are finding all kinds of applications in farming operations. One company has developed a drone that will replace your sprayer. Most drone applications involve taking pictures or collecting data on crop and soil conditions, but Rantizo, a new, Iowa-based firm, has turned a drone into a sprayer.
Michael Ott, Rantizo CEO, says using a drone to spay crops has a number of advantages, “We are nimble, quick, and responsive, while traditional technology is slow and heavy. This allows us to get into a field right after it rains when it is too wet and muddy. We can fly right over the top.”
Most traditional sprayers involve tanks full of water and big spray booms. Drones take a different approach. Ott says they use an electrostatic spray, “We put a charge on the spray, and that helps it to wrap around leaves, and that leads to low and even coating.” This allows them to just spray the active ingredient and not add water. He added it helps products last longer, so a small amount can cover a large area.
The system can read field maps from other data collection systems, and the drone will deliver just what is needed to just the areas of the field that need it. Ott hopes to have the system on the market for the 2019 growing season.
If you would like to start using drones, you could win a Phantom 4 drone at the Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo, Dec 11-13 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. Get details at indianafarmexpo.com.