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System based in a small helicopter and mobile robots for efficient generation of resources maps. Application to the precise spreading and minimization of pesticides

A. Sánchez J. Zamora R. Palacios C. Fernández M. Alvar A. Arranz J. Porras F. Fernández-Bernal

October 2007 - June 2011

Funding entity Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (anteriormente Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia)

This project will develop a system to generate georeferenced fumigation maps of crops that will help farmers in getting better product, reducing expenses in pesticides and minimizing environmental impact.
The system comprises a small helicopter, autonomous ground vehicles and a central station. The helicopter is equipped with remote control, motion/position sensors, auto-pilot electronics, wireless communication and digital cameras. The ground vehicles are unmanned autonomous robots used as georeferenced landmarks. They are equipped with navigation devices (GPS or Galileo) and linked wirelessly to communicate their position. The central station is a laptop computer in charge of the system coordination during image acquisition and communicates with the helicopter and ground vehicles. After data acquisition, it performs image processing to generate fumigation maps.
In order to make the system efficient and feasible (low cost) for extensive utilization, the project includes the development of control algorithms to help helicopter maneuvers, such as hover, and also the development of mobile ground landmarks that allows for immediate field analysis without requiring manual installation of fixed georeferenced marks. Previous work of the research team has demonstrated the feasibility of obtaining fumigation coordinates from georeferenced aerial images.

Project funded by Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, within Plan Nacional de I+D+i, 2004-2007.

    Research topics:
  • *Mobile Robots and artificial vision


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