Monday, October 11, 2010

Detecting weeds with LabVIEW-based machine vision

Here’s another machine vision application to file under the “Agrivision” heading: “Agriculture goes greener with imaging” (Photonics Showcase, September 2010.)

If you’ve ever grown potatoes you’ll know that once they’re in the ground they have a way of popping up year after year. That’s a problem if you want to rotate your crops. The casual grower can just go out and weed but for commercial vendors it’s quite a problem.

Fortunately, some clever folks at the University of Wageningen in the Netherlands have come up with a prototype machine to take care of the problem. This consists of two AVT Marlin cameras that look – one in the IR, the other in color – at what’s growing in the field. A LabVIEW program then distinguishes between what’s potato and what isn’t so that a herbicide can be applied.

Sounds like a neat system; all it need is a little fine tuning before it hits the market.

No comments: