If you have looked at GPS guidance for your farm operation you are
already aware of the many advantages this technology has. When we
started evaluating the options on the market we realized that the
simple lightbar GPS guidance would just not work for our area. On
our farm we often have to go around waterholes, bushes etc. so that
you really need to see a map of the applied area to determine where
you have misses or overlaps.
After evaluating the more sophisticated GPS guidance systems,
we wondered why we could not use our laptop or tablet as the display device.
Almost any GPS device does provide positional information through
a standard protocol, so understanding the data coming from the GPS
and displaying it properly for agriculture GPS guidance should be
all what is required.
To make a long story short, we went ahead and did exactly that.
We created a program called FarmerGPS. It runs on a Windows 10, 7/8,
Windows Vista,Windows XP based PCs/tablets and connects
to any GPS via a standard serial cable or USB-serial cable. Version 6 adds Bluetooth as a connection option!
Over the past 8 years we added many features based on feedback
from our customers.
So if you are looking to add GPS guidance to your farm operation
in a very cost effective, yet feature rich way, read through the
website or contact us!. You may also download a fully functional
evaluation version of FarmerGPS. The evaluation version is limited
to about 10 min of GPS receiver connectivity. If you have a laptop
and a GPS device (NMEA 0183 protocol and connectivity to a laptop),
go ahead and test for free. You may also test without a GPS receiver!
Download FarmerGPS and select "simulation" mode. While
simulation mode is not perfect, it gives you a good idea on how
FarmerGPS works. All you need is a desktop PC (or laptop) with a
Windows operating system.
FarmerGPS incl. 3D perspective view (as of version 5),
"light-bar" like directions, resolution change, sprayer on/off input,
record keeping, exports to Excel, OpenOffice, Google Earth etc.
Advantages of GPS guidance in agriculture:
Reducing overlap and minimizing spraying gaps
Lowering fertilizer and chemical costs by reducing overlaps
Minimizing environmental impact
Verifying complete coverage - at the time of application
Maintaining reports on all field activity
Marking areas or points in the field
FarmerGPS will work with basically any GPS receiver providing NMEA
0183 positional output. FarmerGPS uses the RMC and GGA NMEA sentences.
The cost of a FarmerGPS system is much lower than many other solutions
with less functionality. A typical FarmerGPS system consists of:
With a total cost of about $ 2000.- FarmerGPS has many more features
than other much more expensive systems. In addition the tablet priced
into this system is often used for many other tasks in a farm business.
- a netbook/tablet incl windows OS (about $ 600.-)
- 12V/110V converter for the laptop (about $ 30.-)
- Novatel GPS receiver 5 Hz incl. cable (about $ 899.-)
- Interface hardware for sprayer/seeder/etc. ( $120.-)
- USB to RS232 cable ( $46.-)
- mounting hardware ( $ 50.- - 100.-)
- FarmerGPS software ($ 399.-)
You could start with a standard GPS receiver provided it can be configured to use the NMEA protocol. Since
this is a standard option in many GPS devices (even your hunting
or fishing GPS device) you may start with the one you already own.
For basics all you need is a Windows tablet, the GPS and the FarmerGPS software!
Links to GPS information (these sites have nothing to do with FarmerGPS
and are simply a result of some internet searches):
Farming Tools: Global Positioning System (GPS)
Testing of GPS Receivers