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Agricultural Infotronic Systems

Qin Zhang
Associate Professor
Department of Agricultural Engineering
(217) 333-9419; qinzhang@illinois.edu
Qin Zhang

Recent advances in farming technology (such as variable-rate nitrogen applications) and in sensing technology (such as remote sensing) have provided U.S. farmers with a beneficial alternative way of farming—prescriptive farming. Prescriptive farming can maximize farm efficiency and profitability through optimizing production. However, it requires special skills and sufficient information to support optimal farming production. To remove these obstacles for farmers who want to optimize their production using prescriptive farming, it is necessary to provide them an information management technology that not only works but also, more importantly, is easy to use.

figure 1

An agricultural infotronic system (AIS) is an integrated information management system for collecting, processing, and presenting ready-to-use operation information for farmers to perform prescriptive farming on agricultural machinery. The illustration shows the basic functions of an AIS. It consists of information collection, processing, and display functions and is designed to convert raw production information into a ready-to-use format for producers to use in planning their precision-farming operations.

The impact of this research will be significant. The outcomes will provide producers with an applicable tool to adopt workable precision-farming technology as one of their profitable practices. This research will help producers maximize farm efficiency and profitability through optimizing the production based on small grids of a field.

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Participating Departments
College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences
University of Illinois Extension
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