AI drones have become one of the mainstays of technological evolution transforming how we carry out daily work routines. More than anywhere else, drones have been transforming the agricultural sector over the past many years. The rapid advancement of drone technology has given rise to precision agriculture, which is widely proposed as the savior of human civilization and our mainstay to ensure food security for a rapidly growing global population.
Today, drones are used to carry out all sorts of work related to agriculture, from crop mapping to livestock counting, crop stress monitoring, water source monitoring, soil moisture identification, pest scouting, and many more.
The massive increase in demand for agriculture drones means we have some fierce competition in the industry concerning different types of drones contending for dominance. Here in this blog, we will exclusively be looking at types of drones used in the agriculture business. These drones come in all shapes and sizes with unique strengths and limitations.
So, without any ado, let’s get started…
Choosing the right type of drone used in Agriculture Business
Before we review the leading types of drones used in agriculture, let’s take a moment and see some important aspects you should consider before purchasing an AI drone for agriculture.
As mentioned above, various types of drones are available in the agricultural practices market. Also, each type of drone comes with a unique set of features, which makes them ideal for certain tasks. Before committing to a drone, make sure you know the purpose of your purchase and that the drone can carry out the specific job you want.
Here’re some important aspects to consider when buying drones for agriculture;
Types of drones used in the agriculture business need to be robust and durable to carry out extensive redundant tasks repeatedly. The drones should be able to fly in all weather conditions and be water and dust-resistant.
While the pricing of drones has come down significantly, these are still expensive technology for many farmers. Again, the key is to realize the right type and category of drones compatible with the application you want.
The good news is that intense competition means you always have the choice to compare prices and choose accordingly. However, pricing shouldn’t be the only criteria; rather, you should compare pricing against features and go for the most suited option.
Guards are essentially the drones’ propellers, which are crucial for the system’s flight. What makes guards all the more important is that they are responsible for safeguarding the drone in case of collision or drop.
Thereby, when you are choosing the right type of drones used in the agriculture business, make sure these have adequate guards for propellers. Guards won’t only protect the drone in case of a collision but also protect livestock from injury due to spinning blades.
– Camera / Sensor
Cameras are central to the working of agricultural drones. All drones used in agriculture will have a camera or sensor to capture relevant data from the field. Again, the key is to go with a drone with the best camera/sensor specifications.
For reconnaissance purposes, the drone’s camera should be able to capture images/video in high-quality. Whereas, if you want to use it for crop monitoring, it should be equipped with a robust sensor (for instance infrared sensor for crop health monitoring).
Size is another important aspect when purchasing a drone for agriculture purposes. The ideal drone size will depend on the purpose and use case. For instance, portable drones with simple controls may be an idea for small farms to carry out requisite monitoring/surveillance. Similarly, for large commercial farms, you will need big drones that can cover great distances in one flight and are capable of performing multiple tasks required of them.
Best Types of Drones used in Agriculture Business!
Now that we are done with important aspects to consider while purchasing an agricultural drone, let’s quickly move on and review some of the best agricultural drones you can purchase today!
1. Yuneec Typhoon H520
- Flight time: 25-30 mins
- Flight range: 1640 meters
- Camera: 20 MP
- Speed: 45 mph
- Battery size: 5250 mAh, LiPo
- Take-off Weight: 1645 g
The Yuneec Typhoon H520 is one of the best drones exclusively designed for commercial agricultural use and capable of performing various tasks on the farm.
The drone has an excellent 20MP camera capable of capturing high-quality photos and videos of crops and soil.
The Yuneec Typhoon H520 has a flight time of 25 minutes, which gives farmers plenty of cushions to carry out different tasks across the entire farmland. The Yuneec Typhoon H520 is also a great choice for farmers seeking detailed crop monitoring. With a range that extends up to 1,640 meters, you can easily capture all the crop details across large commercial fields.
Further to the credit of Yuneec Typhoon H520, the drone comes with robust built-in filters, which enable farmers to directly use the captured imagery without needing any third-party editing software (however, going with professional image processing software may improve the quality and detail of the images).
Nonetheless, it’s a great drone that can be used for various purposes in the agriculture field and can operate under all weather conditions.
2. DJI Agras T20
- Flight time: 120 mins
- Flight range: 2000 meters
- Camera: 12 MP
- Speed: 22.36 mph
- Battery size: 18650 Li-ion
- Maximum Take-off Weight: 47.5 kg
DJI is one of the world’s largest drone manufacturing companies, with a meticulous reputation for building some of the most advanced and high-end multi-purpose drones for various fields. The DJI Agras T20 is one of the pioneers when it comes to drone applicability in the agriculture field. The drone has high-end features and is specifically designed to carry out various agricultural tasks.
DJI Agras T20 comes with multiple safety features like an auto return-to-home function that ensure the safe landing of the drone in case of any disturbance.
To add to the safety of the drone, it is equipped with multiple ultrasonic sensors, which can detect obstacles in the flight path and prevent collisions (perfect for new users). Also, it’s probably one of the most portable drones you can purchase for agriculture purposes and can be folded/unfolded in seconds.
Regarding functionality, the DJI Agras T20 comes with high-volume pumps and 8 nozzles. This efficient machine can spray 6 liters per minute – making it ideal for farmers to spray pesticides across large areas.
The maximum take-off weight capacity of the DJI Agras T20 is 30KG, which is second to none. Additionally, the drone can be fitted with external equipment like cameras and sensors, thus making it one of the most versatile machines you can purchase for agriculture purposes.
With a maximum flight time of up to 2 hours and a range of almost 2000 meters, it’s the perfect machine that you can use to carry out all sorts of tasks across large commercial farms and plantations.
3. AgEagle RX-60
- Flight time: 60 mins
- Flight range: 6000 meters
- Camera: 8.3 MP
- Speed: 33 mph
- Battery size: 5500 mAh
The AgEagle RX-60 has a stunning range of 6000 meters, making it one of the most formidable contenders for the best drones used in agriculture.
Apart from the massive flight range, the AgEagle RX-60 comes up to 60 minutes of flight time, making it an ideal option for commercial-scale farms. The machine also has various safety features, including a safe return-to-home function.
The 8.3 MP camera fitted on the drone is well-built and capable of capturing high-resolution images and videos of crops, soil, and livestock.
The powerful motor fitted inside AgEagle RX-60 can thrust the drone up to 33 mph, enabling farmers to capture footage and images of the entire crop field quickly. Moreover, this impressive machine can also carry 800 grams of external payload, including cameras or sensors.
As a specialized drone designed and manufactured to carry out various agricultural tasks, the AgEagle RX-60 is a strong, sturdy, and reliable machine that’s incredibly easy to operate and ideal for farmers with little drone operating experience.
4. DJI AGRAS MG-1
- Flight time: 31 mins
- Flight range: 2000 meters
- Camera: 12 MP
- Speed: 26.8 mph
- Battery size: 9000 mAh
- Weight: 10 kg (without battery)
Making up our list of the best types of drones used in the agriculture business, the DJI AGRAS MG 1S is a big machine specially designed for precision agriculture. The machine can travel up to 26.82 mph and has a flight range of 2000 meters.
As a large machine, the DJI AGRAS MG 1S is perfect for commercial-scale large farms, where farmers need to cover large fields quickly.
For imaging purposes, the DJI AGRAS MG 1S is equipped with a high-quality 12MP camera, which can also capture footage in 1080p resolution.
As a specialty drone for precision agriculture, the DJI AGRAS MG 1S can be used for various purposes, including surveying crops, tracking pests and diseases, carrying out soil surveys, or monitoring livestock across large fields. The drone can also monitor crop quality, assess crop stress, and take measurements like biomass, crop height, soil moisture, and other measurements for efficient farmland management.
To sum up, drones have become an indispensable technological tool in agriculture. The technology is beefing up our food security needs by enabling effective and efficient agricultural practices. Above, we have mentioned some of the most widely used and versatile drones you can purchase for agriculture practice. However, as a farmer, you must understand your farm needs, compare various types of drones used in the agriculture business and choose the best one that suits your needs.
At Folio3, we are one of the leading tech-enabling agencies with extensive experience in precision agriculture practice. Our instant and reliable solutions for precision agriculture and livestock monitoring enable farmers to improve the management and productivity of farmlands