This week we’re looking at how tech and innovation are changing our farming practices and getting food on the table. These stories show a fascinating look at leaps ahead in the way tomorrow’s farmers will work the land, connect with urban populations and use drones to monitor their crops.
Autonomous Tractors to Take Over Farming
Elon Musk’s Brother Starts Urban Farming Company
“Square Roots is an urban farming accelerator — empowering 1,000’s of millennials to join the real food revolution. Our goal is to enable a whole new generation of real food entrepreneurs, ready to build thriving, responsible businesses. The opportunities in front of them will be endless.
“Square Roots creates campuses of climate-controlled, indoor, hydroponic vertical farms, right in the hearts of our biggest cities. On these campuses, we train young entrepreneurs to grow non-GMO, fresh, tasty, real food all year round, and sell locally. And we coach them to create forward-thinking companies that — like The Kitchen — strengthen communities by bringing local, real food to everyone.” – Medium
The Real Advantages of Using Drones on Farm Fields
“The good old-fashioned crop monitoring method was simple: walk through the fields and look at the plants. But for 160 square miles (not to mention much larger areas), this would take a while. …
“Drones give farmers a new perspective thanks to their low-altitude view; they fly from a few meters above the ground up to 120 meters, which is the regulatory altitude for unmanned aircraft operating without clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration.
“From this altitude range, drone cameras can take multispectral images, using visible light (VIS) and near-infrared (NIR) light to identify which plants reflect different amounts of green light and NIR light. Together, these are used to produce multi-spectral images that can highlight healthy and distressed plants. Multiple images of the same area over time can be combined to create a time-series animation, which shows large-scale changes in crops and opportunities for better crop management.” – Singularity Hub