RESEARCH: Pattern Testing for AG-122 Spraying Drone (RPAAS)

It’s here! We completed our Spray Pattern Testing research in collaboration with the USDA-ARS on HSE’s Spraying Drones (Remotely Piloted Aerial Application Systems – RPAAS)
This testing protocol / model follows that of manned aerial applicators – but instead of the 3 / 4 passes per dataset, we upped that to 12. We know that is testing to a higher standard, but because this technology is emerging, it is important to provide extra confidence in the findings.

How the study was conducted:

We tested three platforms (AG-110, AG-116, AG-122), each of them at different ground speeds (1m/s, 3m/s, 5m/s and 7m/s).

A spray mixture of tap water and fluorescent dye (rhodamine dye) was applied at four different application (ground) speeds over the centerline of a 1mm cotton string, suspended 1 m above ground. The RPAAS was flown 3m above the string with 12 replications per speed variable. The RPAAS flew 4m above the cards for one pass per speed variable. Fluorometric assessment of spray deposits on cotton strings and spray droplets captured on water sensitive paper (WSP) samplers described spray pattern and droplet spectra, respectively. Effective swath was determined based on the widest spray swath with a coefficient of variation (CV) = <15%. Cards were scanned and evaluated for spray coverage using Accustain software (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, IL, USA).

 

The Results:

For the AG-122, you can review the data HERE

For the AG-110 & AG-116, data is still being analyzed. Please check back with us later.

 

USDA research on spraying drones

The use of trade, firm, or corporation names in this publication (or page) is for the information and convenience of the reader. Such use does not constitute an official endorsement or approval by the United States Department of Agriculture or the Agricultural Research Service of any product or service to the exclusion of others that may be suitable.

 

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