Bosch’s Deepfield Robotics has developed a farm robot called Bonirob. According to Popular Science, Bonirob “is billed to eliminate some of the most tedious tasks in modern farming, plant breeding and weeding. The autonomous robot is built to be a mobile plant lab, able to decide which strains of plant are most apt to survive insects and viruses and how much fertilizer they would need, and then smash any weeds with a ramming rod.”
Bonirob can identify which plants are weeds based on photographs of healthy plants that are labeled “good,” and unhealthy plants that are labeled “bad.” Bonirob takes in that data and decides if a plant on a farm is good or bad based on that data. As the robot collects more information, it will use that information to make its decision.
“Over time, based on parameters such as leaf color, shape, and size, Bonirob learns how to differentiate more and more accurately between the plants we want and the plants we don’t want,” Amos Albert, general manager of Deepfield, told Popular Science.
In tests, Deepfield discovered Bonirob is 90 percent effective. Other benefits include the absence of herbicides. Unfortunately, farmers will have to wait a while before they can reap these benefits. Bonirob is currently only available for research. According to Popular Science, Deepfield believes that Bonirob could entirely change farming as it’s known today within the next 20 to 30 years.
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