As its April Fools item this year, the Norwegian farming newspaper Bedre Gardsdrift presented a ’study’ on the subject of automated Rapid drilling.
Fully automated, electronic wheel engines, GPS steering. Yes everything you can imagine - however still a fantasy.
The study was reported to be carried out by one Jogeir Agjeld, who was said to have monitored a test machine during spring tillage and found that automated drilling had many advantages. The machine in question was described as consisting of a Rapid 6-8 metre RDAC fitted with Cummins diesel engine and Allison automatic transmission, with large tractor-type wheels at the front producing the draught. Steering and control were said to be provided by the GPS IIB system, which is also used for automatic landing of aeroplanes. So the claim was that farmers could sit at home and take it easy, while the machine itself did all the drilling e.g. on a farm in another country.
”The possibilities are endless, we recorded a capacity of almost 10 hectares per hour. For refilling, Väderstad is working to develop refill trailers on aerofoils that drive alongside the seed drill and refill the hopper on the go. This would increase the capacity substantially without causing any soil compaction. The aerofoil has its advantages but also some disadvantages, for example on steel slopes”, M Agjeld was quoted as saying.
The article went on to say that before the machine becomes a bestseller for Väderstad there may be some safety aspects to be resolved, but with IR technology and by various means Jogeir Agjeld thought that it would not be impossible. If people could fly to the moon 40 years ago, this can probably be sorted out, he reportedly said.
We thank Bedre Gardsdrift for its outstanding help in a hectic time.