Väderstad has made an unprecedented and huge leap from current seeding technology with a new drill concept called Vaderstad Proceed, which could fundamentally change the way farmers operate. The principle is based on one single machine that is capable of increasing the yield potential of a full range of crops, including wheat, barley, oilseed rape, sugar beet, peas, maize and sunflower.
“At Väderstad we build machines that keep our customers at the forefront of modern farming,” says the company’s senior vice president sales and marketing Mattias Hovnert. “We develop new methods and from time to time we set completely new standards. Proceed is one of those leaps that doesn’t happen often in the farm machinery industry, but when it does, it can have a massive impact.
“Väderstad Proceed can place the smallest of seed at the perfect depth with millimetre precision, leading to yield increases as well as less need for tillage, chemical treatment and use of fertilisers.”
At the heart of Proceed – which will premier at Agritechnica 2022 – is its high-precision row units. Prior to seed placement, individual pre-drilling wheels consolidate the field to ensure same conditions for each seed. The pre-drilling wheels are individually mounted, using hydraulic down-force to ensure high performance.
When the seeds reach the row units from the central hopper, an adapted version of the Väderstad PowerShoot singulation system, takes full control of each single seed all the way down to the soil. Each seed is received by a stop wheel, which optimises seed-to-soil contact at selected depth across the full working width of the machine.
To provide the driver with full control, each row unit is electrically driven and controlled via the iPad-based control system Väderstad E-Control. Functions include row-by-row shut-off and variable rate, dynamic tramlining, individual calibration, as well as real-time precision monitoring and control. All of which are true technical innovations in the cereal seeding sector.
Field trials show that Proceed can halve wheat seed rate, without compromising yield compared to modern seed drills. Importantly the crops are stronger and more uniform at all crop growth stages.
“Proceed technology provides outstanding depth-precision, in-row precision, end-of-row precision, and seedbed optimisation,” says Väderstad director product management at business development Lars Thylén.
In trials a few months after drilling winter wheat at a seed rate of 150seeds/m2, saw a plant biomass increase of 102%, 72% in root biomass and 62% more shoots per plant, compared to a modern seed drill.
Proceed has a row spacing of either 225 or 250mm. Easy calibration and a quick change of seed discs allows the drill to switch to 450 or 500mm for crops such as sugar beet or oilseed rape, and to 750mm for crops such as maize, sunflower or cotton.