Taking Flight: Case IH's FieldXplorer Technology Improves Productivity and Sustainability in Thailand

Sep 27, 2022 4:00 PM ET

CNH Industrial brand Case IH has pushed precision technology to new heights, with GPS-enabled drones now able to interact with Case IH Advanced Farming Systems (AFS) software and provide accurate, real-time intelligence to help make on-farm decisions.

The technology is called FieldXplorer, and it’s just been launched in conjunction with Case IH’s new Austoft 9000 series sugarcane harvesters in Thailand.

All Austoft 9000 sugarcane harvesters are built ready with the latest innovations in sugarcane production, including Case IH auto guidance, known as AFS AccuGuide. A factory ordered option, AFS AccuGuide technology enables automatic steering of the harvester with ultimate precision along every row thanks to a high performance AFS GPS receiver and steering controller.

For additional accuracy, FieldXplorer uses a GPS-enabled drone to capture images of the crop. Using the FieldXplorer platform, those images are converted into guidance lines for harvesting operations. Return on the investment in auto guidance both financially and environmentally is made immediately via improved harvester operation and reduced crop damage.

Different planting line configurations can also be analysed using FieldXplorer, providing an informed choice for the best planting pathways to be used. The selected configuration is then exported to the auto guidance system in the tractor, which results in an optimised planting plan for each field that promises higher production of sugarcane.

FieldXplorer can also be used to pinpoint planting failures and calculate row spacing quality, all with the goal of minimising losses and wastage.

Case IH AFS Product Manager, Matthew McDonald, says this technology will soon be widely accepted as a key step to significantly improving sugarcane productivity in Thailand.

“When farmers use traditional ways to harvest and plant sugarcane, they can be limited to what they can see with their own eyes and control manually,” he said. “With the help of this new platform they can now harvest and plant sugarcane with greater levels of accuracy and efficiency which will lead to higher return on investment, maximum yield production and minimum crop failure.”

The technology was tested extensively in the fields of one of the biggest mills in Thailand. Case IH staff, Thai dealers, and the customer involved in the trial, collaborated to test both the software and hardware in a range of scenarios.

“It was a wonderful experience to be in Thailand, working with Thai farmers and dealers in putting this technology through its paces,” McDonald said.

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