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Drones on the rise

From the November 2018 issue.

Advancements to drone technology are revolutionising many industries and coffee production is no exception.

Developments in drone technology have led to the machines being utilised in a variety of industries, from military to logistics, and now agriculture is on board.

Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), are small, remotely piloted aircraft operated by a ground-based controller.

Brazilian drone manufacturer XMobots says UAV technology is very well established in Brazilian agriculture, with the sugarcane, soybean, corn, cotton, and eucalyptus sectors making use of the drones to monitor crops and apply pesticides. The company has also seen several coffee producers use its drones.

“We have three large coffee groups that use our technology in Brazil,” XMobots Commercial Director Thatiana Miloso says.

“Our drones are used to collect data that contributes from the topography of the terrain – such as planialtimetric surveys and contour lines – to the counting of coffee trees and detection of pests, soil water stress, among other problems that reduce crop yield.”

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