More and more, it’s looking like drone usage on the farm will be a little bit like snowflakes – no two are exactly alike.
"It’s our biggest learning curve," says Rob Ferriol, CEO of CSG Solutions. "How can we deliver this technology to a farmer and teach him or her how to use it given the unique problems each one has?"
Ferriol started CSG Solutions in 2010 after mastering manned and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology during an eight-year stint in the Marine Corps, and four more with U.S. Special Operations Command. He says just like jeeps, GPS and other technologies that originated in the military, drone technology has many potential civilian applications – especially in the agriculture industry.
Right now, the industry is focused on learning more about what UAVs can and can’t do. One limiting factor is what Ferriol calls the "negative reflex" of new technology. But increasingly, the biggest limiting factor may just be time, he adds.
"You may not have time to sift through all the data or spend half of a day just learning to fly it," he says.
CSG Solutions is one of many companies working to help farmers use UAV technology to do one of two things on their farm: grow a better crop, or make better use of their resources (including time). Ferriol will be on-hand at the Farm Journal Drone Fly-In event on July 17, where participants can learn more about drone data collection, legal and safety issues and much more. There’s still time to register – click here for details.
For Farm Journal’s full lineup of drone coverage, visit www.FarmWithDrones.com.