John Deere has unveiled a fully autonomous tractor that’s ready for large-scale production during a press conference at the Consumer Economics Show (CES) 2022 in Las Vegas, with units to be made available later this year.
The tractor has been designed by John Deere as a tool to help farmers feed this growing population with less available land and skilled labour, and work through the variables inherent in farming like changing weather conditions and climate, variations in soil quality, and the presence of weeds and pests.
The machine will bring together John Deere’s 8R Tractor, TruSet-enabled chisel plough, GPS guidance system, and new advanced technologies.
The autonomous tractor features six pairs of stereo cameras, enabling 360-degree obstacle detection and the calculation of distance. Images captured by the cameras and determines if the machine continues to move or stops, depending on if an obstacle is detected.
The autonomous tractor will be able to continuously check its position relative to a geofence, ensuring it is operating where it is supposed to, and is accurate to within less than one inch.
To use the autonomous tractor, farmers will need to transport the machine to a field and configure it for autonomous operation using John Deere Operations Centre Mobile, which will provide farmers with access to live video, images, data, and metrics, and allows them to adjust speed, depth, and more.