New autonomous precision agriculture solutions from XAG
Chinese precision agriculture solutions provider manufacturer XAG has released a new set of agricultural drones, which it believes will help farmers worldwide take the next step in precision agriculture with more autonomous aerial solutions.
The new drones – the XAG P50 and P100 agricultural drones, along with the XAG M500 and M2000 remote sensing drones – were launched in China last December and will be available for global sales this year.
The P50 and P100 Agricultural drones
“The two new models of XAG Agricultural Drone, P100 and V50, follow brand new principles from their structural design to task systems,” the company says.
“The XAG P100 inherits the classical quadrotor structure with a 40kg effective payload, while the V50 adopts XAG’s leading dual tilt-wing design to meet the needs of different users based on the farm size.
“Both new drones are crafted in a structure that can fully separate their flying platform from task systems. This means that they can switch flexibly between the function of crop spraying, granule spreading and field survey. Transportation and maintenance are also made much easier to increase operation efficiency.”
The new autonomous babies also feature an advanced flight control system called SuperX 4 Pro, which allows toe drones to remain steady and maintain highly accurate operations around farms, even with weak internet connection.
This feature brings to farmers the possibility to operate in GPS-denied environments, something that was almost impossible to do with old school drones that only work a steady internet connection, as they were programmed to rely on the RTK signal of the 4G network.
“XAG has also upgraded the three task systems on both P100 and V50 Agricultural Drone to further improve efficiency and precision in various application scenarios. The XAG RevoSpray 2.0 system adopts the intelligent rotary atomisation technology that allows fine droplets to be accurately sprayed between the size of 40-600μm, and therefore greatly cut down the use of pesticides.
“The XAG RevoCast 2.0 system was redesigned with dual vertical centrifugal discs and novel smart screw feeder, which can achieve a broadcast efficiency of 80kg urea per minute.
“XAG RealTerra 2.0 as the mapping module can equip the drone with the ability to survey a maximum area of 13 hectares per sortie in farmland and orchard. It supports real-time map stitching and is able to generate high-definition field map immediately once landing.”
Smarter Remote sensing drone with M500 and M2000 drones
The drone company says it made the M500 and M2000 remote sensing drones to help farmers with an efficient way of obtaining field information and crop growth status – apart from precision operation tools – for scientific decision-making.
“The drones address different demands of field mapping in rural areas, which helps relieve human burden and reduce labour costs,” XAG says.
“The XAG M500 Remote Sensing Drone follows the light and convenient foldable design of the previous XMission drone. It supports four types of gimbal cameras with different megapixels and wavebands to meet the need of quick farmland mapping and crop scouting. By taking HD farmland images and generating digital field maps, the XAG M500 can help farm managers quantify field conditions and indicators of crop growth, including irrigation, germination rate, crop density and height, pest diseases, and estimated crop yield.”
As the first ever Electric Vertical Take-off and Landing (EVTOL) fixed-wing drone made under the XAG stable, M2000 is more suited for large-scale and high-frequency farmland survey. Equipped with the intelligent fast charging battery, this drone can fly up to 90 minutes in a single sortie and map an area of up to 533 hectares.
These drones work with other autonomous ground vehicles made by the company, like the R150 autonomous ground vehicle that has a scalable open payload platform that can be charged with different task systems for high-precision crop spraying, fertilisation, and mowing.
Inspired by the need to fill the gap left by an ageing population of farmers in China, XAG hopes its products will form part of the long-term future for a smart agriculture ecosystem.
“In April 2021, XAG launched the “Super Cotton Farm” in Northwest China, where two post-90s generation farmers manage a 200-hectare cotton field with the help of drones, robots, and AI. After the trial of one planting season, the XAG Super Cotton Field has reduced its labour costs by 60 percent and used 36 percent less pesticides compared to traditional farm. The bumper harvest of snow-white cotton also demonstrates the scalability of an autonomous farm driven by digital technologies.
“The newly updated farming drones and robots not only enrich XAG’s six smart agriculture product lines, but also leapfrog the previous models in terms of efficiency, precision, and safety. They are full of human-centred design to bring thoughtful care to users on farms.”
Over the past eight years, XAG has been successfully scaling up its agricultural drones across 42 countries and regions, including a handful in Africa, to bridge the digital divide in rural areas.