Agricultural Automation: Fundamentals and Practices

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Qin Zhang, Francis J. Pierce
CRC Press, Apr 19, 2016 - Science - 411 pages

Agricultural automation is the core technology for computer-aided agricultural production management and implementation. An integration of equipment, infotronics, and precision farming technologies, it creates viable solutions for challenges facing the food, fiber, feed, and fuel needs of the human race now and into the future. Agricultural Automation: Fundamentals and Practices provides a comprehensive introduction of automation technologies for agriculture.

From basics to applications, topics in this volume include:

  • Agricultural vehicle robots and infotronic systems
  • Precision agriculture, with its focus on efficiency and efficacy of agricultural inputs and the spatial and temporal management of agricultural systems
  • Specific agricultural production systems, including those related to field crops, cotton, orchards and vineyards, and animal housing and production
  • Automation relative to specific inputs in agricultural production systems, such as nutrition management and automation, automation of pesticide application systems, and automated irrigation management with soil and canopy sensing
  • Liability issues with regard to surrounding awareness and worksite management
  • Postharvest automation—perhaps the most advanced component of agricultural production in terms of automation and an important factor in global agriculture

Agricultural mechanization, one of the top ranked engineering accomplishments in the past century, has created revolutionary change in crop production technology and made it possible to harvest sufficient products to meet the population’s continuously growing needs. Continued progress is essential to the future of agriculture. This book provides an up-to-date overview of the current state of automated agriculture and important insight into its upcoming challenges.


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1 Agricultural Automation An Introduction
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About the author (2016)

Dr. Qin Zhang is the director of the Center for Precision and Automated Agricultural Systems and a professor of agricultural automation in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering at Washington State University. His research interests are in the areas of agricultural automation, intelligent agricultural machinery, and agricultural infotronics.

Dr. Francis J. Pierce is a professor emeritus in the Departments of Crop and Soil Sciences and Biological Systems Engineering at Washington State University. He is currently a principal in AgInfomatics, LLC, providing consulting services in agriculture, soil and water conservation, and agriculture technology with a focus on precision agriculture and evaluation of research and outreach projects.

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