We secured SBRI Welsh Government funding for a Net Zero farming project to create a Low Carbon solution for tacking weeds in agriculture, by working in collaboration with two of our tenant companies – 42able and Aerialworx.
We have used this funding to respond to the call for decarbonising the agriculture sector, by bringing technological innovations to the field (quite literally!) to tackle the age-old issue of pesticide spraying. The solution we worked with our tenants to develop was The Green Eagle – a drone that identifies weeds and tackles them one by one; getting to the root of the problem.
The Green Eagle showcases how artificial intelligence, computer vision and drone technology can accelerate both the farming industry and growth in the Welsh economy. The project was developed to save costs, time, environmental impact, carbon emissions and improve farm safety. The work is normally undertaken by diesel tractors or manually by hand and covering acres of land, often with no need as weeds make up only a small portion of the field.
The future of agriculture is loaded with challenges and opportunities for innovation and technology. This explored the challenges and opportunities, delivering a prototype and a glimpse of the future.
This is a perfect example of what M-SParc does best; innovation and collaboration, for the benefit of the region. If we can commercialise the drones, then we can revolutionise how farmers spend their time and money, in Wales and beyond.
This is a very exciting project, developed by Welsh companies here in north Wales. There is opportunity to continue this project, creating well-paid, specialist careers in developing this technology further. It’s just another way we are proving that rural areas can be, and indeed are, at the centre of innovation.
Pryderi ap Rhisiart, M-SParc Managing Director
The Green Eagle was a concept project however it has proven that the technology does work. The team is now looking to take it to market for the benefit of national agriculture. The AI could be adapted to recognise native weeds in other continents, leading to the Green Eagle spreading its wings across the globe.