Future of Agriculture 025: Michael Dunn, Precision Agronomist & Remote Sensing Specialist

According to AgFunder, over $4 billion poured into AgTech investments in 2015. Many times when people think of the recent AgTech craze, their mind immediately goes to drones.

I have been curious about drones for quite some time, both from a “coolness factor” perspective and from the perspective of “what’s really that great about them in agriculture?”.

I had been looking to bring on a drone expert to the podcast for quite some time, but didn’t want someone who would be too technical or would look at it from an impractical angle. One day on LinkedIn I came across the article “Applications of UAVs in Agriculture” by Michael Dunn, CCA. I knew I had found my next podcast guest.

Michael is able to talk about drones from the perspective of the farmer and from someone who is trying to help the farmer utilize technology to improve their operation. He is both technically knowledgeable as well as practically sensible about the uses of drones in agriculture, their limitations, and their potential.

I hope you enjoy this interview with Michael Dunn of Anez Consulting.

Connect with Michael on LinkedIn

Check out Anez Consulting: anezconsulting.com

 

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1Comment
  • Andrew Robson
    Posted at 15:07h, 18 November Reply

    Interesting podcast. I do enjoy Michael’s posts.

    However It would have been worth flagging the cost of consultants to fly drones , in Aus it is between $2500- $4500 per day. Legal restrictions mean you can only fly to the extent of line of sight (around 200m), and flight time is ~25 mins and a lot less with additional sensors added, so really limited use less for broadacre. Lastly the sensors offer fairly poor spectral resolution ie 8 byte meaning the development of specific algorithms to yield quality etc is impossible.

    As a commercial tool satellite imagery far out ways drones, in price per area, quality of imagery and extent of coverage. Sentinel 10 m imagery for example is free, Spot 6 (6m) imagery is ~ $2 km2 (AUS), and worldview satellites (30cm) range from $40 km2 upward depending on whether it is 4,8 or 16 spectral bands.

    We currrntly use sat imagery for 9 agricultural industries, including coverage of 95% of the Aus sugar industry. Maybe a useful follow up discussion.

    Cheers

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