Considering Hyperspectral Imaging For Agriculture

Technology in agribusiness continues to grow, just as the number of devices we use to connect with the Internet does. Unfortunately, many of these technologies remain fairly bleeding edge, but for the larger agribusiness company that is looking to make changes that can result in massive growth, but more importantly understanding, of crops and crop yields, there are quite a few higher end technologies.

A not so typical hyperspectral camera.

A not so typical hyperspectral camera.

One of the most exciting breakthroughs recently has been the use of Hyperspectral imaging as well as multispectral imaging in agriculture applications. This enables the farmer to look at his crops at more than just a surface level – hyperspectral images can be taken of crops to measure not only their development throughout the growing cycle, but also their health. And while the farmers using this technology tend to be fairly leading edge and early adopters of the technology, larger concerns are taking a strong look at it.

Finding A Hyperspectral Imaging Specialist

While there are certainly many specialists out there, California’s Surface Optics remains a leader in hyperspectral imaging. This is a very specialized industry, and as farmers begin to see the long term economic benefits of hyperspectral imaging, companies like Surface Optics will be providing far more of the service than ever before. The only issue at present for smaller farm concerns tends to be pricing, which can actually be quite high. Larger ag companies feel this “burn” less, of course, as their overall investments in growing technologies tend to be far higher.

Crop defects are particularly important to detect early, so as to not only increase yield, but to avoid a situation where crops may need to be destroyed – due to their weak molecular composition. It’s something that may not be a big deal if one is talking about a 300 acre farm, as an example, but what about a 3000 acre farm? As consolidation of American farmland continues, these are real questions that farm operations do have¬† to look at.¬† Staying competitive and increasing yields has always been a key focus of farmers, and technology has become a massive part of this.

Make no mistake: hyperspectral imaging is here to stay in the Agriculture sector. The only question a farmer needs to ask of himself is this: when will I jump on this train?

 

 

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