FRANC - Field Robot for Advanced Navigation in bio Crops

Development of a field robot with an advanced navigation system for organic farming

While in modern agriculture increasingly powerful complex machines with advanced technology are used organic farming is characterized by multiple manual tasks. The project FRANC developed and buildt an autonomous vehicle which can be used especially in organic farming. The vehicle is equipped with the necessary sensor technology and control hard- and software to autonomously drive in row crops. By steerable front and rear wheels a tight turning radius is possible. A modular design of the vehicle allows easy and flexible adaptations for different applications and requirements. In order to ensure that the vehicle can be stopped immediately and brought to a save operation mode a safety concept was developed. Regarding the safety system, it is assumed that the vehicle does not operate unattended and that a remote controller allows to interfere with the automatic system at any time. Within this project, the school was introduced to an advanced technology in agricultural engineering. It is primarily intended to enthuse students for robotics. The use of modern technologies (sensors, navigation, control technics , ...) can be taught in a clear way with foundation in a real application. The trend in agricultural farming is towards diagnosis and treatment of individual plants. Thus a huge amount of research questions are far beyond the project's goals. This project builds the basis for a future and long-term collaboration.

This project has been completed.