Go back

The future begins in the Future Technology Zone

New exhibition concept from John Deere at AGRITECHNICA 2019


At this year’s AGRITECHNICA, John Deere is demonstrating  its leading position  in precision agriculture  in the new Future Technology Zone. Nine different product developments and research projects in  the fields  of electrification,  autonomy through automation  and artificial intelligence  show how agriculture  could work even more sustainably  and productively in the future


Zero emission compact utility tractor: This electric compact tractor is based on the John Deere 1 Series. A key feature of this machine is its high PTO power, allowing more than 10,000m² of lawn to be mowed with one battery charge lasting 4.5 hours. In addition to high performance, customers benefit from very low maintenance costs. Potential applications are mainly where low noise levels and emission-free operation are required.

eAutoPowr   transmissi on: eAutoPowr   is the first   continuously variable transmission  with an electro-mechanical  power split. Compared to conventional CVTs, the drive is more efficient and wear-free. Another special feature  is the provision  of up to 100kW of  electrical power for external consumption. To demonstrate this, John Deere and Joskin have developed a slurry  tanker with  two electric drive  axles. Thanks to this  eight-wheel drive system, much more efficient transmission of tractive power is  possible. This can  also reduce  slurry incorporation  costs by up to 25 per  cent. (Further information can be found in a separate press release on the Gold Medal winning eAutoPowr transmission.)

Autonomy through automation

Autonomous electric tractor: John Deere’s new autonomous tractor concept is a very compact electric drive unit with integrated attachment. The tractor has a  total  output of  500kW and can  be equipped with  either wheels or tracks. Flexible  ballasting  from 5 to 15  tonnes is possible,  depending on the app lication, to help reduce soil compaction. Thanks to the electric drive, there are  no operating  emissions and noise  levels are extremely low.  Further advantages include low wear and maintenance costs.

Semi-autonomous  tractor: This  tractor  drives semi-autonomously and is equipped with an integrated crop sprayer. Using a built-in camera, it is possible to work in row crops – for example, applying plant protection products to fruit tree plantations. Filling the sprayer tank takes  place fully automatically at a filling  station, so  the user is not  exposed to pesticides.  This is designed to reduce costs and increase productivity by over 30 per cent.

Autonomous drone sprayer: This drone is equipped with a weed scanner and crop sprayer, allowing weeds to be scanned from the air and then specifically controlled. The 10.6-litre tank is filled fully automatically at a field boundary station, where the automatic battery charge also takes place. Flight time with a fully charged battery is 30 minutes. The main advantage of this d rone is the precise application of pesticides, which significantly reduces the amounts used. Spraying from the air is also possible regardless of ground conditions.

Autonomous  sprayer: This  novel autonomous  sprayer has a 560-litre spray tank. The high ground clearance of 1.9m and four-wheel steering make it extremely versatile, while the tracks minimise  ground pressure and greatly extend the operating window.

Artificial Intelligence

Blue River Technology : With See & Spray technology, high-resolution cameras capture 20 images per second. Based on the images and artificial intellig ence, the system recognises the difference between cultivated plants and weeds so that individual plants can be specifically treated. With this new generation of weed control, the use of pesticides can be greatly reduced.

Command Cab: The future vision of a driver’s cab reveals new possibilities for artificial  intelligence.  With its joystick  control, touchscreen display and networking of all machine components, John Deere presents a completely new operating  concept. By integrating real-time  weather data, individual presettings and job management  procedures, the cab becomes  the command centre for agricultural operations.

Large spraying drone (VoloDrone): The large drone developed jointly by John Deere and Volocopter has a diameter of 9.2m and is powered by 18 rotors. It has  a fully  electric drive  with replaceable  lithium-ion batteries.  One battery charge  allows a  flight time  of up to 30  minutes, and the  VoloDrone can be operated both remotely and automatically, on a pre-programmed route. The drone  frame is  equipped with  a flexible standardised  payload attachment system.  This means  that different  devices can be mounted  on the frame, depending on the application. For crop protection, the large drone is equipped with two liquid tanks, a pump and a spray bar. Thanks to the low flying height, very large area coverage of up to 6ha/hr can be achieved.

Source: John Deere Walldorf GmbH & Co. KG