Agro Engineering has been taking color and Infrared aerial photographs since 1980. With the advent of a new digital multispectral camera system and innovative computer programs, we produce an invaluable service for growers. These major advances enable us to produce and deliver images to the grower within days of the flight. Additionally, we are able to produce a crop health image which is extremely sensitive to crop vigor.
Agro Engineering intends to be capable of taking thermal images starting in the 2017 season. While offering almost the same information as near infrared imagery has offered us for years, thermal imagery is useful for determining crop health in a region of the field along with crop cover. This information is needed to help with the complex calculations of yield estimation. We will be working closely with growers to establish the correct variables to help refine our ability to estimate yield based off of aerial photos.
The multispectral feature of the camera enables it to separately sense green, red and near-Infrared light levels. These different light levels are mathematically manipulated to produce an image that is incredibly sensitive to crop health. This image indicates the amount of vegetative biomass (related to the number, size and layers of leaves), vegetative vigor (related to the thickness of the spongy layer of a leaf), and greenness of the leaves (related to fertility and chlorophyll levels in a leaf). The variation in this crop health index throughout the field shows areas of the healthiest crop and highlights problem areas. With the help of our consultants, efforts can be made to improve problems and increase crop yields and profits.
Aerial photographs help identify: