The quality of soil sampling has a significant effect on the accuracy of site specific fertiliser application. Soil sampling depth, number of cores and their distribution within a field or field section are important criteria for achieving a high quality sample. Considering the increased number of soil samples required for site specific fertiliser application, the chosen method of sampling needs to be fast, cost effective and accurate to provide reliable information. Soil sampling systems currently in use do not allow an automatic control of the precise soil sampling depth and the number of cores taken. The system described here uses a newly designed hydraulic auger, that samples the soil at a constant depth under varying field and soil conditions. This has been achieved by a specific shape and angle of the auger turns. The number of cores taken and their depth are controlled automatically by a sensor linked to an on-board computer. Furthermore, diagnostic tools identify errors and prevent any malfunction. The soil sampling system allows a fully automated and standardised sampling procedure, providing the required reliability for site specific fertiliser application.
Precision Agriculture – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 16, 2004
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