Contactless Sensor System for Row Navigation and Automatic Depth Control for a Sugar Beet Harvester using a 3D Time of Flight (ToF) Camera


  • Vadim Tsukor University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück. Competence Center of Applied Agricultural Engineering COALA


Steering agricultural machinery during the harvest in fields is a tedious task for drivers. Automated guidance of the machinery will not only reduce driver fatigue but also increase productivity and safety of the harvesting operation. The existing mechanical solutions for row navigation on the sugar beet fields do not provide sufficient accuracy during the harvesting process. The next important factor in optimizing equipment performance and marketable yield is depth control or distance control. Gauge wheels or rollers are common mechanical devices used to reach the correct depth or distance. These systems have limited versatility requiring the operator to make frequent on-the-go adjustments. The objectives of the research presented in this paper were to develop and optimize a contactless sensor system for row navigation and automatic depth control for a sugar beet harvester.




World Conference on Computers in Agriculture, San Jose, Costa Rica, 2014