Our project is to aid in the upgrade of the RADA (Robotic Agriculture Data Acquisition) System. This system consists of two main subsystems, a four-wheeled base capable of zero-degree turn radius and an instrumentation arm with four propellers atop to aid in stabilization. As of now, the end goal of this project is to have a system that can be utilized to monitor crop health autonomously instead of the current method, which involves enlisting foremen to physically take quantitative measurements and qualitative observations of the plants.
As a team, we are trying to bring crop monitoring to the 21st century. In an industry where things seldom change, this area is the most archaic. Usually, a team of foremen would pace through fields measuring crop height with a stick and recorded data by hand. Limited by manpower, it is increasingly difficult to gather the mass amounts of data necessary in order to accurately assess the vitality of a field. Our system aims at automating this tedious process in order to allow for larger scale crop management without the increase demand for manual labor. This system also digitizes all the data gathered, which greatly aids in the viewing and comprehension of the data.
Our goal is to add measurement capabilities, data processing, and increased functionality to the proof of concept prototype created by the previous senior design teams. Our client has given us a certain degree of freedom with the intent to let our creativity and strengths guide the trajectory of the project during our second semester of work. Our primary goals for this project are as follows: