Machine vision for agriculture solutions

Machine vision is part of many automation and robotics applications used in agriculture. Tractors drive autonomously, drones or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles record the condition of the soil, robots assist in milking, feeding, and harvesting. Inspection of seeds and produce for quality and grade is also performed with machine vision technologies.

Productivity, efficiency, and sustainability are some of the critical factors driving the adoption of automation technology in today's agriculture industry.

Challenges of today's agriculture

  • Feeding the growing world population
  • Protection of the environment
  • Fulfillment of governmental regulations
  • Compensation of fast changing weather conditions
  • Limited resources like water and agricultural area
  • High production and labor cost
  • Lack of skilled workers
  • Increasing consumer demands

MVTec Software enables smart agriculture solutions

The flexibility and high quality of MVTec software contribute decisively to your sustainable economic success. The software architecture allows fast development of all kind of machine vision applications and thus the development of new automation solutions. This results in cost savings and an improved time to market for you.

Best-practice-solution: efficient plant protection with MVTec

Plant protection is an important component of crop cultivation to ensure high yields and best quality. Growing objections and increasingly strict regulations of traditional protection methods are challenges that have to be faced. Therefore, it is necessary for crop protection products to be put to particularly efficient use. With the help of machine vision, it is possible to distinguish between crops and weeds in real time and to precisely apply the agent as you can see in the following video:

machine vision in agriculture video thumbnail

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As shown in the video an industrial camera (multispectral image acquisition) is mounted on the sprayer and takes pictures of the plantation. The camera sends the data to an embedded device. This device runs machine vision software by MVTec and controls the application. The software uses deep-learning-based object detection to identify weeds between crops and gives the system the impulse to precisely apply the herbicide to the identified weeds.

The advantages are evident:

  • Targeted application reduces the environmental impact
  • Resources are used cost-efficiently
  • The result are high yields and best quality in harmony with nature conservation regulations and consumer wishes

Best-practice-solution: automated monitoring and harvesting with MVTec

The automation of processes in greenhouses using machine vision technologies makes it possible to better meet the increasing demand and requirements for quality, hygiene, and food safety. Automation compensates for the lack of qualified workers and promotes efficient and sustainable crop production in greenhouses. With the help of machine vision, harvesting robots precisely detect, classify and harvest ripe crops as you can see in the following video:

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The video shows a greenhouse harvesting robot monitoring and harvesting pepper plants. A 3D stereo camera creates a 3D point cloud of the pepper plant. Based on this data, the software generates a 3D scene to locate the single peppers. Deep learning technologies are used to classify the exact degree of ripeness and plant health. After the software has identified the best gripping and cutting point, the robot can harvest the peppers.

The advantages are evident:

  • Precise harvest time ensures best quality
  • High availability reduces personnel bottlenecks
  • Reliable and objective monitoring helps ensure early detection of diseases and thus reduces the use of harmful substances

How automating agricultural processes increases your efficiency

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Machine Vision in farming? Seriously? Oh yes! This podcast is about the future of agriculture and the challenges that come with it. The key is a properly applied technology. In this interview, expert Mario Bohnacker, product manager at the international machine vision software manufacturer MVTec, explains how machine vision software can help overcome these challenges. Using real-world examples, he explains what machine vision software is, what it is capable of and how it can make farmers save both time and money while protecting the environment.

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Shaping the future of agriculture with MVTec on Campus

A program to improve machine vision in agricultural research and teaching

With the MVTec on Campus program we aim to pass on our experience and expertise and to help promote research on innovative machine vision technologies in agriculture. In order to accelerate research results, we strive for a mutually supportive partnership with universities. Therefore we are providing professors and lecturers with HALCON software free of charge. Learn more about MVTec on Campus

Application examples

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