Know How / Technology

From nutrient sensors to auto-steer systems, budget guidance kits to electric tractors and clever combine attachments to crop monitoring drones, we’ve got everything covered.

We’ll explain how to get set up with tractor GPS, how to do it on the cheap and what the best options are on the market. Our technology area houses all the information in handy guides and product reviews for you to get stuck in to.

Key areas of focus:

  • Guidance systems
  • Livestock technology including robotic milkers
  • Alternative fuels such as methane
  • Drones and mapping technology
  • Future farm technology developments

Case studies

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GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Video: Highland farm grazes cattle unfenced with GPS collars

Virtual fencing is gathering pace and there are now more than 30,000 collars in use around the globe. The Girvans of Corrimony Farm, near Drumnadrochit, Inverness, could not graze cattle…

TECHNOLOGY

How to build your own tractor autosteer system for £700

Anyone who has seen Clarkson’s Farm on Amazon Prime recently will have learned that driving in arrow-straight lines when carrying out fieldwork doesn’t come naturally to some. It’s not only…

LAYERS

Benefits of smart sensors for layer flock health

Ammonia levels have been cut by 75% and antibiotics use reduced to zero after a high-tech sensor system was installed at Wern Farm in Powys. Damp air affecting litter quality…

BREEDING AND FERTILITY

How rumen boluses can help manage suckler cow fertility

A Welsh beef farm has lifted the rate of conception at first service in its heifers by 10% since using bolus technology to aid heat detection. Rumen boluses are more…

DAIRY

Dairy's chemical-free disinfectant delivers multiple benefits

A dairy farm in Norfolk has replaced chemical disinfectants with a system using only water and low-voltage electricity. This has helped reduce the farm’s carbon footprint, improved cow health, delivered…

TECHNOLOGY

Greeneye builds twin-line spray pack to target applications

There is no shaking the feeling of impending doom surrounding the future availability of many herbicide active ingredients, but that needn’t mean booming weed populations, dwindling yields and slumping profits.…

Practical advice

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DAIRY

How to make the most of technical data from robots

As well as easing labour pressures and increasing milk yields, robotic milking systems have the potential to generate a huge amount of data that can be used to inform key…

CROP MANAGEMENT

New climate module predicts cereal growth and disease risk

Cereal growers can now benefit from a climate prediction module that uses weather data to forecast key growth stage timings of crops to improve input efficacy and plan workloads. The…

SLURRY AND MANURE MANAGEMENT

How slurry cooling technology can cut ammonia on pig units

Slurry cooling technology is an effective way to reduce ammonia emissions from indoor pig production, and the heat recovered can be used elsewhere on the farm, reducing bills and cushioning…

TECHNOLOGY

Guide to soil moisture sensors: Why use them and the options

There are many good reasons for growers to use some form of soil moisture-sensing technology to monitor conditions and how the water is being used in irrigated crops. First and…

DAIRY

How to decide if investing in dairy tech is worthwhile

The technology available to dairy farmers is developing fast and it can be difficult to decide where to invest your hard-earned cash. To help decide which technology is really worth…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

5 bits of kit every poultry farmer should own

If there’s one thing that sorts the best poultry producers from the average, it’s understanding the environment of individual sheds. This is best done by measuring every parameter possible -…

Insights

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TECHNOLOGY

JCB's hydrogen-fuelled combustion engine examined

JCB is one of the first agricultural engine makers to successfully modify its conventional powerplants to run on compressed hydrogen, eliminating carbon emissions without any impact on performance. Its gas-fired,…

TECHNOLOGY

Cornish firm creates kit to turn slurry emissions into fuel

Greenhouse gas emissions from livestock farming rarely make for happy reading, but a small Cornish firm has come up with a raft of clever techniques for capturing and converting them…

POTATOES

How an easy-to-use app can help with tight potato margins

At the sharp end of the season, potato maincrops might be increasing or decreasing in value by as much as £100/ha/day as yields increase and segment proportions change. Harvest too…

TECHNOLOGY

Video: Driverless Robotti sets to work on UK soils

A large Suffolk vegetable grower is the first UK owner of a novel Danish autonomous tractor, having been convinced of its potential to save labour and increase output when weeding…

TECHNOLOGY

New hybrid system aims to streamline electric weed control

A novel hybrid system that combines a specialist conductive spray solution and electric current is aiming to improve on the work rate and efficiency of existing electrical weed control designs.…

TECHNOLOGY

How technology that can control tractors works

If the idea of driving into a field, punching a few settings into a touchscreen and letting a computer take charge of key tractor and equipment controls sounds a bit…

TECHNOLOGY

Is biomethane about to become more commonplace on UK farms?

The jury is still out on the future of fuels, but natural gas in compressed, liquified or renewable form is making a strong case to replace smutty, petroleum-based power sources.…

MARKET OPPORTUNITIES

How gene editing can help farmers target premium food markets

Gene editing has the potential to help change the food we eat, making it healthier and more nutritious as well as boosting its flavour and increasing yields. It also provides…

TECHNOLOGY

Emerging tech to improve soil health and cut pesticide use

Soil degradation across the world is costing agriculture average losses estimated at 1.5mm/year on conventionally managed farms and how to reverse this trend is key to the future of farming.…

Technology reviews and tests

ENVIRONMENT

How do three main farm carbon calculators compare?

Want to know how much your farm is contributing to industry net-zero targets and how to improve? Or are you looking to access carbon trading markets or other financial incentives…

TECHNOLOGY

On test: New hard-as-nails Cat S42 smartphone

Many smartphones have come a cropper in merciless farmyard environments, but Cat reckons its latest drop-proof S42 can survive where the bigger names fail. The new rugged handset is built…

COMBINES

Retrofit yield monitor offers crop data on old combines

Canadian outfit Farm TRX has developed a relatively cheap retrofit yield monitor that is able to generate downloadable crop performance maps via apps that run on a standard smartphone or…

ATVS AND UTVS

How the ATVtrac tracker finds stolen bikes in under two hours

Millions of pounds’ worth of ATVs and farm buggies have been recovered thanks to retrofit tracking systems. The covert kits are fitted discreetly in the machine’s shell and ping regular…

DAIRY

Buyer's guide: Teat disinfection technology

As herd sizes increase and labour sourcing continues to create challenges, more farmers are turning to automated teat disinfection technologies to ease pressure in the parlour and promote efficiencies. Although…

TECHNOLOGY

Collar-mounted GPS tracker for lost dogs on test

Whether it’s a working sheepdog or an ancient scruffy terrier that spends most of its time by the Aga, losing a dog is pretty upsetting. Luckily, there are now serveral…

DAIRY

9 new products to be showcased at Dairy-Tech 2019

After the successful inaugural show last year, Dairy-Tech is back for 2019 and will feature lots of the latest inventions and equipment on the market. New products at the event…

TECHNOLOGY

Video: Land Rover's butch Explore smartphone on test

Land Rover fans who want a smartphone to match their rugged workhorse are in for a treat with the Explore – a tough handset built to take the punishment of…

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