Simon Blackmore is a key figure in the development of Precision Farming and agricultural robotics with a world-wide reputation. He worked for twelve years in Africa and Europe before starting his academic career and now collaborates with many universities around the world to help develop Precision Farming and agricultural robotics.
Five of his most recent positions and accomplishments include:
-Head of Engineering at Harper Adams University College, UK (www.harper-adams.ac.uk)
-Consultant to the Precision Agriculture Research Chair at KSU in Saudi Arabia
-Project manager of the EU funded Future Farm project (www.futurefarm.eu)
-Founder of UniBots. (www.unibots.com)
-Head of the AgroTechnology group at KVL (Copenhagen University)
This talk describes a novel agricultural mechanisation system based on small smart machines. It separates the current mechanisation methods from the original plant requirements and in doing so allows a new specification to develop based on agronomic, economic and environmental needs that can lead to a more sustainable production system. Three main groups of field operations have been identified: Crop establishment, Plant care and Selective harvesting. Each process and operation brings its own challenges and opportunities. The resulting framework should give the basis for mechanisation well into the 21st century.