The first part of this project has already been described on our website in the article «The First Harvest of Robots». In brief, lets list the main points of this event. Having received state funding, a group of scientists and engineers tried to prove the possibility of getting the crop completely "without the participation of the hands of man" ("the Hands Free Hectare"). All the activities related to monitoring and processing should have been done by the machinery. The participation of people was reduced to the repair of machinery and the remote management of all work.
The first result of the experiment was the understanding that unmanned technics copes worse with any work than manned. For example, tractor with remote controle could not handle the ground and sow along the direct lines.
The process of re-equipment of the tractor proved to be more complicated and took more time than was expected by the engineers. The inspection of the territory with the help of a drone proved to be insufficiently informative.
As a result, the head of the project said that it was the most expensive hectare of wheat that he had ever seen. The appearance of the sponsor breathed new life into the project "the Hands Free Hectare", which, otherwise, could end on this.
The first attempt showed that the possibility as such exists. Although the price of such products so far does not suit anyone. New improvements are made in accordance with the requirements of AHDB and relate primarily to reduce the cost of products.
Another problem is the difficulty of controlling of the technique that moves on wet ground. Immediately after the rain, the output of the tractor-robot in the field is not possible. But a number of improvements improves its capabilities and gives hope that the sowing lines will become lines, not curves.
Now the developers are sure that the probability of creating an autonomous farm is much higher. Jonathan Jill is sure that in the near future farmers will be able to buy for their farm a complete set of equipment capable of independently carrying out the main activities for the cultivation of a number of crops. In this case, the main vacancies required in agriculture will be mechanics for servicing robotic equipment.
Separately, Jonathan Jill thanked the media, thanks to whose efforts this project became known around the world.