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Harvest has always been an extremely pressured time of the year – time is precious, manpower is precious and everyone and everything must pull together to bring the harvest home.
It is the perfect opportunity to benefit from the advances of digital technology and New Holland has a solution with the IntelliSense system, fitted to its award-winning CR combine harvesters.
The best combine operators focus on minimising losses, optimising grain quality and maximising output. This is where automation can help to take the load away from operators.
How the IntelliSense system works
To be able to perform like an experienced operator, the machine must be able to replicate exactly how the operator works.
The combine must be able to quantify losses; it must be able to recognise contaminants in the grain tank and it must be able to regulate its own speed to maximise output.
It must also know how to react to solve any issues that it may encounter.
New Holland’s IntelliSense system uses a number of sensors to determine its settings.
To measure losses, IntelliSense uses traditional impact-based sensors but with regard to losses over the cleaning shoe.
A unique pressure sensor that measures variations above and below the upper sieve informs the combine whether losses detected are caused by too much – or too little fan speed.
Knowing how losses are caused, enables the combine to respond in order to address the issue.
Back in 2008, New Holland demonstrated GrainCam for the first time.
This sensor uses multi-spectral light to analyse passing grain to check for both contaminants such as chaff and straw as well as cracked grain.
Again, understanding the contaminant, the combine then knows better how to respond to find a resolution such as increased fan speed to address chaff and a slower rotor speed to minimise cracked grain.
To understand the load on the combine, IntelliSense monitors not only its forward speed, but the load on the engine as well as the flow of crop through the machine by means of a strain gauge on the front elevator and header drive.
Balancing out these sensors, the combine can optimise its forward speed and maximise its output.
While the combine is intelligent enough to make decisions for itself, it is important to understand that the strategy the combine follows is set by the operator. The operator can set which parameters IntelliSense will prioritise:
- Maximum output
- Minimise losses
- Optimise grain quality
As with any automated system, if it is not simple to operate, it will simply not be used and IntelliSense was designed to be particularly user-friendly.
This can be clearly seen in the way that the operator can set the sensitivities for losses and grain quality.
Where years ago, the operator was required to assign a numerical value to the sensitivity, IntelliSense uses a clear to understand dialogue box.
For example, with regard to losses, the operator is asked whether losses are “Way too much”, “Too much”, “Acceptable” or “More is allowed”.
Depending on the response the combine will set the sensitivity of the sensor to deliver the result demanded.
A little over 100 years ago, when Leon Claeys founded his workshop to make agricultural implements, it was done with the intent of making the lives of farmers that little bit easier through mechanisation.
Now through automation such as IntelliSense, that mechanisation can reach new levels of efficiency regardless of the skills and experience of the operator
IntelliSense enables farms to get the most from their machinery investment – helping modern agriculture to lower the cost of harvest per hectare through reaching greater efficiencies.
The digital revolution is now sweeping through agriculture and in times to come, as margins become ever tighter, the incremental increases in efficiency that technologies such as IntelliSense can offer may make the difference.
Through mechanisation and now, digital automation, New Holland remains at the forefront of innovation and sustainability.
See the CR Revelation in action: