Smart Agriculture through GPS Technology

By Poornima Rawat / Technical Correspondent THE GPS TIME

GPS Technology in Agriculture is revolutionising the farming practices while providing many benefits & various opportunities to farmers

Global Positioning System (GPS) has always ranked high in the field of navigation system and has provided numerous applications to different industries. One such is the agriculture industry which is revolutionising with the use of digital technologies in farming such as drones, remote monitoring, sensors and GPS technology in farming practices.

GPS system provides many benefits and various opportunities to farmers for effective farming practices, crop maintenance and production of good quality of crops by monitoring and eliminating pathogen affected areas through early treatment.

GPS help farmers to continue their work accurately during low visibility field conditions such as night and dirt. It helps in navigating the particular location in the field, collecting the samples of soil, identifying the accurate areas of the field or any tree affected by pathogen to prevent the damage.

The technology has not only gained importance in the field of Precision farming and Site-specific farming but has also helped farmers to monitor the crop health at different stages of its development process in different weather conditions.  Here are some of the uses of GPS technology in agriculture –

  • Creating yield maps: GPS data is used to create the yield map which helps in comparing the yield distribution every year within a field and thus help farmers to examine the areas that are not yielding any crop or those which require more irrigation. The data also analyse the content of moisture in a field.
  • Sampling of soil: GPS along with mapping software helps in organizing the collected soil samples from fields. This data is used to determine the properties and conditions of soil which gives the information that whether a soil is fit for a particular type of crop or not. It also help in the optimal use of fertilizer and pesticides and control pollution.
  • Tractor guidance: The RTK GPS for tractor acts as a manual guidance system for it. Ploughing a field with a recording GPS system enable in programming a tractor to follow the same route for cultivation, harvesting and spacing required between the crops.
  • Weed Location: Weed hinders the growth of a plant. The GPS system help in the growth of a crop by determining weed location through the technique of linear sampling.
  • Developing tools: GPS equipped tools with programming improve farming activities and help agribusiness to become more efficient and productive.
  • Determining harvesting: GPS has a major role in determining harvesting as it helps in estimating the size of area to be harvested and how it will take place.
  • Accurate planting: With the help of GPS, planting can be done accurately as it tells the depth and spacing required for a seed to be planted.
  • Tracking Livestock: GPS transmitters attached to animals collar help in tracking their location on large farms.
  • Cropduster targeting:  GPS records the location of areas affected by pathogen and insects problems. The data help Cropduster pilots to selectively target the affected areas instead of treating an entire field as a result saves time and control exposure of chemicals.