Drones: The Next Generation of Farm and Ranch HelpMon, 23 Aug 2021 12:36:39 CDT
Leave it to the next generation to take new technology and apply it to age-old challenges. Arthur Erickson, CEO and co-founder of Hylio Agrodrones, told KC Sheperd his company combines his rural background with his college fascination with drone technology.
Erikson’s company allows farmers to use drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles, to remotely do everything a ground-based rig can do, but better. These aren’t the small, civilian drones you may see in public. According to Erickson, his drones are up to 8-feet-wide, can function in up to 45-mile-per-hour winds and are equipped with sprayers, covering 24 acres per hour.
“Think of the drone as a flying spray boom,” Erickson said. “All the limitations you have with your ground-based rig - getting into tight areas, expensive to maintain and operate, can’t handle terrain well - our drone can do everything it can do, (but) with spatial freedom.”
Not only do Erickson’s drones make getting around easier, but he also said they are the cheaper option.
“(Drones are) more precise,” Erickson said. “The fact of the matter is, if you have a 120-foot boom sprayer, you can’t just spray one outcropping of weeds, you have to resort to a broader approach.”
The drones, in partnership with data, allow farmers to not only pinpoint problem areas by checking fields aerially, but also treat those problem areas easily and efficiently, Erickson said. Plus, they can get much closer to the ground than an airplane and the downdraft, like that of a helicopter, helps combat draft, he added.
Erickson said his customers seem to enjoy their new farmhands. To see if a drone would benefit your outfit, visit hyl.io.
Click or tap the LISTEN BAR below to hear KC’s whole conversation with Arthur Erickson, where he goes over the other advantages of drone technology for the farm or ranch.
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