ibexWhen you think of a farm, what comes to your mind? Endless, flat prairies that are full of crops ready to be harvested for a bumper year. In reality, a number of farmland happens to be situated on hillsides, which is an unforgiving terrain that is difficult to get to or maintain. To make sure that such high fields remain clear for livestock, Ibex Automation has kicked off fully autonomous field trials over in England’s Peak District, making use of its agricultural robot which is agile and mobile enough to make its way through steep dairy and sheep pastures, while it goes about identifying and destroying weeds.

Ibex claims that Britain has approximately 41,000 sheep and 17,000 dairy farms with an average size of 140 acres (57 hectares), where these fields are susceptible to weeds which could end up as toxic or grow into bushes. Sheep farm owners would be right to worry about that, since sheep tend to love getting tangled in the strangest places. Enter the Ibex robot that will hunt down and kill those nasty weeds, in order to prevent loss or damage to livestock.

This is made possible thanks to sensors that enable it to identify encroaching weeds, while destroying them individually as opposed to the more general broadcast spraying. A robotic arm will get the job done with surgical precision, and has the flexibility of being swapped out or used for haulage. Best of all is, it navigates through difficult terrain without complaining or taking frequent rests.

Filed in Robots.. Source: gizmag

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