Technology on the Farm

December 11, 2008 06:00 PM

The following information is a Web Extra from the pages of Farm Journal. It corresponds with the article "Next Step in Precision Application” by Darrell Smith. You can find the article in the December 2008 issue.
Learn more about the Mitchells' use of technology.
GPS Sparks Big Changes by Darrell Smith
To see how rapidly GPS-based technology can transform every aspect of crop production, just visit Clay Mitchell's farm near Buckingham, Iowa.
Two farmers' experiences and research conducted by the University of Kentucky indicate technology that eliminates planting overlaps may quickly pay for itself. And, surprisingly, the smaller and more irregular your fields are, the quicker the payoff.
Implements on Track by Darrell Smith
Clay Mitchell is a get-it-done guy who likes to take control. When he first used auto-guidance with sub-inch GPS in 2000, he quickly realized he was within reach of true controlled-traffic farming. Clay farms with his father, Wade, and great-uncle, Philip, near Buckingham, Iowa.
One benefit of RTK auto-guidance keeps leading to another, says Clay Mitchell, who farms with his father, Wade, near Buckingham, Iowa. First, RTK's sub-inch accuracy allowed him to strip-till and inject fertilizer directly under the row. Then it let him control traffic by setting all of his implements on 120" wheelbases and running in the same tramlines year after year.
Spray Fields By the Inch by Darrell Smith
You might call it one-touch spraying, although Clay Mitchell, who farms with his father Wade and great-uncle Philip near Buckingham, Iowa, prefers "RTK nozzle control.” RTK, or real-time kinematics, is the most precise Global Positioning System satellite signal, with sub-1" accuracy.

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