Robotized space specific placement of liquid fertilizers
Light weight robotized applicator injecting nutrients precisely into the root zone.
Application of fertilizers without emissions into the root zone is a common practice in the Netherlands. Often this occurs in a single operation when slurry is being used. However, it might be combined with other actions, such as seeding, when mineral fertilizers are in use. Usually the machines work on large widths and at fixed application rates per field. This practice detrimentally affects the soil quality in terms of compaction and diversity. The repeated application of fertilizers makes it attractive for robotization, especially with the availability of accurate global positioning facilities in agriculture nowadays. The Fertilization Robot operates on small working widths while fertilizing crops row by row, going from one to the other side of the field. It finds its way back to the mobile docking station, where it loads automatically. The robot prevents compaction by its light weight, especially when low grade liquid fertilizers from waste streams, like wash water from air scrubbers, are used. The Fertilization Robot also enables space specific application of fertilizers into the root zone of plants when combined with GPS and precise small scale soil mapping. The Fertilization Robot enables farmers to add durability on top of high productivity by maximizing their yields in a smart way by using waste streams with minimal effects on the environment. A Dutch solution for a global problem.