Kinze’s Autonomy equipment program, features the Jaybridge Robotics software solution for autonomous/driverless vehicles.
Kinze Manufacturing recently showed the autonomous equipment in action in Illinois where harvesting corn by three large-scale corn growers was demonstrated. The system pairs Kinze's grain carts with a Kinze-modified stock tractor, cost-effective sensors, and Jaybridge's advanced algorithms.
Jaybridge Robotics claims this is the world's first large-scale, truly autonomous row-crop solution. This is an exciting offering for row crop farmers who increasingly struggle to find adequate labor at harvest time, and for whom productivity increases are key to profitability, Kinze and Jaybridge have noted. The driverless system is “controlled by advanced software and is capable of performing a complete workflow during the harvest process.” This includes locating a moving harvester in the field, synchronizing with it, collecting the harvester grain and delivering that grain to trucks near the field for transportation.
"It's very gratifying to see the autonomous system in action, performing the harvest just as it was designed to do," commented Josh Pieper, Jaybridge Robotics chief technology officer. "Refined path planning, obstacle avoidance, and a very high degree of reliability are all in evidence here during the harvest season. What is even more exciting is working directly with the farmers who are the end users, and seeing first-hand that our work to deliver an easy-to-use, intuitive interface has really paid off."
Illinois farmer Rick Elliott reportedly said, "It's really simple, all you do is push a button and it does what you want it to. It's amazing."
"The farmers' positive feedback on the autonomy system has been very rewarding for both Kinze and our partners at Jaybridge," said Susanne Kinzenbaw Veatch, vice president and chief marketing officer of Kinze Manufacturing. "The tablet interface is all they need. Just four buttons, combined with an aerial view of the field, allows them to establish and maintain complete control of the system. Keeping it this simple allows farmers to learn how to use the system very quickly. In fact, they tell us that using Kinze Autonomy becomes routine for them within a day."
A video case study and technical tour is available at www.jaybridge.com
Jaybridge Robotics touts itself as a software and services company that helps partners create robust, reliable and cost-effective autonomous vehicles. State of the art capabilities include software, tools and expertise for vehicle motion, navigation, perception, control, precision visualization and intuitive human-robot interfaces. Jaybridge was founded by graduates of MIT and Carnegie Mellon University, and it applies exclusive, field-proven algorithms and best-of-breed open-source software to solve complex robotics challenges.