NovAtel's Annual Journal of GNSS Technology Solutions and Innovation

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agriculture " More use of real-time sensors, telemetry, and autonomous systems are coming [to precision farming], and they rely on very good quality GNSS solutions. " —Guilherme Oliveira, project leader for GNSS Applications at Stara 26 velocity 2013 lored to the scenario found in each [Stara customer'] market or even each [Stara] customer and application, instead of offering general solutions to the market," Oliveira adds. One example is Stara's Topper 4500 controller for precision farming, which features a large color screen with 3D graphics processing and display, digital maps, and real-time monitoring of application rates. The system's controls are designed by Stara engineers and support a wide range of uses, including variable-rate seed planting and fertilizer applications, yield monitoring, and automated precision guidance. The Topper 4500 "is constantly updated with the new GNSS technologies designed by NovAtel," Oliveira says. NovAtel supports these efforts with product reliability rates three times the industry average, which is very important to the agriculture market. The company has developed innovative navigation technology solutions such as the early integration of GLONASS in agriculture-specific GNSS receivers and dual-frequency GLIDE, a firmware solution that is of particular importance for Stara. Stara is based in Não-Me-Toque, in the Rio Grande do Sul state of Brazil, a region that experiences high levels of ionospheric activity. These atmospherics can affect the propagation of GNSS satellite signals and, therefore, the positioning accuracy of receivers in Stara's farm equipment product line. NovAtel's GLIDE firmware—with options for GPS or GPS+GLONASS operation—combines GNSS code and phase data to produce a positioning solution well suited for applications like farm-equipment guidance, where passto-pass repeatability, typically over 15-minute intervals, is crucial. Dual-frequency GL1DE smoothes the positioning information received by a Stara product while mitigating the effects of ionospheric disturbances. challenges to Adoption Seitz and Oliveira believe that the advantages to using GNSS technology in agribusiness today are game-changing and robust, and that they will develop further over time. "I see more automation in machine control and more automation in data movement in the future," Seitz says. "This is driven by the need for efficiency at the primary producer, [farmer] level". These efficiencies include the substantial reductions in the use of expensive fuel, seeds, and fertilizer that result from using precision techniques to monitor fields and automate the steering of farming equipment. Environmental impacts arising from over-application of pesticides also decrease with implementation of precision agricultural technology through the reduction of these inputs. Oliveira observes that GNSS has a history of being used in agriculture for auto-steering, but now it is being used with more robustness and precision. This is important for the farm tasks that there are nowadays—guidance, section control—and also those ahead, he says. "More use of real-time sensors, telemetry, and autonomous systems are coming, and they rely on very good quality GNSS solutions." However, rates of adoption of precision ag- For more Solutions visit http:/ /

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