TerraRad for agriculture
Field maps from the TerraRad radiometer provide simultaneous soil and crop water content measurements . These data can be used to optimize irrigation prescriptions and to predict, and optimally time, harvest. Save water and increase yield.
Unique capabilities of our L-band radiometer for agriculture include…
measure 5-10 cm into soil even through thick crop cover
98% accurate soil and crop water content
Autonomous flying and near real-time data saves time
meter-scale resolution and large spatial coverage
Differentiating Soil from Crop Water content
The unique and patented dual-polarization antenna array provides two simultaneous and independent measurements. Both 5cm soil moisture and vegetation water column (through L-VOD) are mapped from a single measurement. The TerraRad Radiometer can be mounted on a UAV (drone), tractor, or other agricultural machinery for the most efficient data collection scenario.
Monitoring Plant Growth using L-VOD (Vegetation Optical Depth)
Monitoring L-VOD throughout the growing season allows direct quantification and prediction of crop yield. L-VOD, with its relation to water content, also provides the ability to determine optimal harvest timing. The images below show the seasonal progression over a mixed corn and hay field.
June 16th, 2020
August 25th, 2020
NDVI saturation at 0.8
Reference: Rodríguez-Fernández, N.J., et al. (2018) An evaluation of SMOS L-band vegetation optical depth (L-VOD) data sets: high sensitivity of L-VOD to above-ground biomass in Africa. Biogeosciences, 15, 14, 4627-4645.
Optimal Harvest Timing and Yield Prediction
The TerraRad radiometer simultaneously provides maps of soil moisture and “Vegetation Optical Depth” (also called Optical Thickness, VOD, L-VOD, or τ). L-VOD is directly proportional to crop or vegetation water content. Other crop indices including NVDI and Leaf Area Index (LAI) derived from muli- and hyper-spectral images reach saturation significantly before harvest, preventing monitoring of crops through harvest using these indices. L-VOD from the TerraRad radiometer provides reliable quantification of crops all the way through to harvest time.
Reference: Patton, J., & Hornbuckle, B. (2012). Initial validation of SMOS vegetation optical thickness in Iowa. IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters, 10, 647-651
Proprietary filtering & calibration software
Our user friendly interface makes field mapping quick and easy for all. Flight planning software enables automated drone flying ensuring safe and precise flights everytime. Field data is accessible in minutes via personal computer, mobile or tablet device.
Can I get some more information?
Please get in touch for more details on agriculture applications from TerraRad Tech