With the number of inventions and innovations over the last few years, you may think that we will eventually run of ideas, but every now and then something new comes along and changes everything. While many people are still against the best drones being given the green light to be used commercially, what most people are failing to see is the immense potential of these handy little machines. Let’s take a look at a few ways in which drones can really make a difference to our country.
First of all, people need to understand that the days where drones were only used to hunt terrorists are long gone. And one industry which is going to gain the most from this, is the food industry. No, I’m not talking about McDonald’s, I’m talking about growing food in farms. But while the government has already been using drones to monitor what businesses and corporations are doing, it’s about time that farmers were allowed to do the same as well. No, they don’t need to monitor what others are doing, but they can at least monitor their own crops.
With that being said, a drone has finally been approved by the FAA to begin crop dusting duties in California. These little drones may look like toys, but they are really excellent, high-tech tools that are the first to be approved in the United States. These drones have undergone rigorous testing and the advent of them is going to give agriculture a major boost in years to come.
Have you ever heard of the Yamaha R-MAX unmanned vehicle? If not, then you are definitely going to hear of this wonder in the weeks to come. As per Professor Ken Giles of UC Davis, this device comes with tanks that can hold supplements, pesticides, and fly above various crops, spraying them with little cost involved. The device was originally meant to help with rice farms in Asia and has proven quite successful in Japan. As opposed to regular spray systems that can cover an acre of land in half an hour, this device will easily cover 3 or 4 acres in the same period of time. This drone weighs just 207 pounds and has been the center of attention ever since it was given the go ahead a few weeks ago.
Even though none of these farming drones have officially gone on sale yet, it is most likely that big corporations are going to buy up most of the drones and rent them out to farmers. There have been smaller drones already approved in the past to help farmers by clicking pictures of any unhealthy crops in their field. But the R-MAX is the first drone which is big enough to carry a payload. And the biggest advantage of using drones has got to be the simple fact that pilots will no longer be required to fly low and slow while crop dusting fields, which is a very dangerous maneuver.
In my personal opinion, using UAV’s for crop dusting makes excellent sense. It will not only allow you to ensure every inch of your crops is sprayed, but it will also allow you to determine how much chemical you want to use and where. This will help you cut down on costs as well, since you won’t waste chemicals where they aren’t required. Plus, if there is any particular part of your farm that needs special attention, these drones will allow you to focus on them without wasting precious resources. With the help of GPS software and mapping, farmers can even track their drones from the comfort of their homes. They could also install special sensors for detecting increased levels of fungus growth, root rot, insect activity, etc.
Is this the next billion dollar industry? I certainly think so.