The giant Sima Show takes place in Paris on 22-26 February 2015. David Cousins looks at some of the more intriguing high-tech pieces of equipment that have won silver medals this year.
1. John Deere rear linkage autoconnect system
Ever since Harry Ferguson came up with the idea of the three-point linkage, machinery manufacturers have tried to make the task of hitching up implements easier.
Deere’s autoconnect system is the latest attempt to find a way to automate the job.
See also: Video – Sima 2013 highlights
Once the implement is within 10m of the tractor, says the company, a pair of cameras guide the arms and hitch towards the implement.
Then the system automatically locks the two halves of the pto and connects the hydraulic hoses. No modification to the implement is required, says the company.
2. Agrotronix tractor cab head-up display
Head-up displays are used in most jet fighters and quite a few top-end cars, but French manufacturer Agrotronix reckons it’s one of the first to bring the technology to tractors.
A projector displays the information the driver wants on the front screen, including video from two cameras showing what’s going on at the back of the tractor or on an implement.
Even though several displays can be projected on to the screen at the same time, there’s apparently still plenty of room to see what’s actually happening in front of the driver’s nose.
3. IFM farm vehicle collision avoidance system
Radar-type detection systems have come down in price in the past two or three years, allowing farm vehicles to spot hazards (like small children and barn stanchions) much quicker than a human can.
This 3D system from IFM Electronic involves using a sensor at either the front or back of the tractor/combine/sprayer to identify the position, size, trajectory and relative speed of up to 20 objects in its field of vision.
This can all take place up to 35m away from the vehicle and the sensor can work in both light and dark.
The company says that it’s a robust system and can cope with temperatures from -40C to +85C, shocks and vibration.
4. Perard chaff recovery system
French company Perard will be showing an intriguing chaff recovery system for combines.
Instead of dumping all those often-viable weed seeds on the ground, they are piped across to the right hand side of the combine.
They are then stored on board and can be used as litter for cows and poultry.
Meanwhile, an on-board engine provides power and folds away when the combine takes to the road.
5. Razol Agrogeovisio high-tech weeder
Razol’s Agrogeovisio weeder uses GPS and cameras to deal with weeds.
The position of every plant is stored in the machine’s memory so the machine knows which plants are crop and which are weeds.
Though precision is said to be as good as conventional RTK autosteer, the system doesn’t actually use that particular technology, says the company. Instead it employs a so-far undisclosed system that will be revealed at the Sima Show.