The beauty of Agrian is it imports and displays data from multiple sources seamlessly. The unified platform is continually looking for ways for farm managers, crop advisors and retailers to share data from different sources for more complete data analysis and reporting. A recent development to this end is the integration of Agrian with the AgOtter sprayer system.
Nick Morrow, Director of Product Strategy, says this is just the latest example of Agrian partnering with other ag tech companies to create a seamless field-to-cloud experience. “We know that different users have varying data collection needs, so by working with many different manufacturers, we can integrate the technologies that fit best within a user’s operation.”
Agrian’s independence as a company provides complete control over what drives software development. “We’ve always had a user-first mentality when it comes to our product,” said Morrow. “We are free to customize for enterprise customers and partners in ways that make the most sense for all involved. For example, Agrian integrates with cloud solutions from equipment manufacturers and in-cab hardware, processing data from sources such as John Deere, Raven Slingshot and Climate FieldView. This isn’t the first place Agrian has pushed the envelope on seamless data transfer, we also led the effort for electronic data transfer with agricultural testing laboratories.”
The benefits for users? Seamless data flow.
For example, for collecting data, the AgOtter system utilizes a consumer technology, the iPad or iPhone, instead of a purpose-built display used by many other application controllers. This can facilitate mobile-to-mobile transfer of data (between mobile apps) to help with offline communication in the field if connectivity is an issue. When connection is resumed, data can then be transferred to the cloud.
How AgOtter Works
The AgOtter system controls and monitors spray-application equipment using GPS along with sensor technology to control the rate of spray and record the information for completion/pesticide use reports. It allows an applicator to see and record spray time, coverage area and all other essential spray data. AgOtter even provides information to the user in regard to spray uniformity and how to improve.
“With the Agrian and AgOtter integration, mobile files can be moved seamlessly in Agrian’s Logged Data Uploader tool, and into an Agrian account,” explained Morrow. “This can be particularly helpful for farms growing products for food companies that require accurate, machine generated documentation of pesticide use. But it is also useful in managing flow rates in order to save on pesticide costs. Different farms may benefit from this tool for different reasons, and that’s why we integrated it into our data collection platform.”
AgOtter performs three main functions:
- MONITOR – The AgOtter app allows operators to view gallons-per-hour, tractor speed, total acres applied and the volume of materials applied through a variety of different spray configurations.
- CONTROL – Spray rates are controlled through ground speed sensors, flow meters and control valves, which continuously adjusts valves to ensure target rates are maintained. All this can be controlled and monitored from any Apple device.
- RECORD – Spray jobs can be viewed remotely by wirelessly sending AgOtter’s spray details via email or an Apple device. Work done in the field is sent back to the office immediately where coverage, flow rates, vehicle speeds and more can be reviewed, printed and recorded.
Our Job? Make Things Easy
For Morrow, half of the battle of user adoption has always been removing the pain of just getting the data out of the field. “Despite the best intentions, it’s not uncommon for growers and their teams of operators to go to the trouble of collecting field data—and then, after the planting, application and/or harvest event, just leave it in the rig collecting dust.”
With wireless data transfer, Agrian customers have even fewer steps to walk through; their data goes straight from the rig, to the cloud, to their Agrian dashboard without ever touching human hands.
“That’s the things that makes AgOtter a valuable tracking tool for many field managers – its ease of use,” added Morrow. “It does a great job translating instructions, into Spanish, for example, and also offers icon-based controls functions.”
In addition, for growers in areas with thick tree canopies, Agrian teams have been particularly impressed with the ability of AgOtter to offer uninterrupted service. This is due to AgOtter’s patent-pending technology that combines inertial and magnetic sensors with GPS/GNSS; the technology allows uninterrupted logging, mapping and flow control even if the satellite signal is lost.
“It is exciting to see how fast farm data integration is evolving, contributing to more seamless critical workflow, and with developments like this, Agrian intends to stay at the forefront of this evolution,” said Morrow.