Nitrogen Application Study on Corn: How UAVs Can Benefit Crops
As the owner of ForeFront Ag Solutions, an independent crop consulting business located in Indiana, Erich Eller specializes in agronomy and precision agriculture. For the past two years he has incorporated drones into his business. He flies an AgEagle drone, and uses Botlink software to analyze the images he captures. Erich has consulted a 56-acre field for the past few years, with corn being planted this most recent season. The field has experienced some difficulty, as a number of areas were troubled with drowned-out spots due to heavy rainfall. Another issue is that several different soil types are found on the field, ranging from finer texturers made of clay to coarser soil composed of silt and sand. Within this field, Erich and his client performed a nitrogen trial. They plotted 16 rows running north and south with varying levels of nitrogen sprayed on each row. Different types of soil were used within the rows as well. Erich was aware of the issues in the field, but he was looking to determine effective and efficient nitrogen levels to spray. He also wanted to see if his NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) maps would truly align with the field’s yield map.