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John Deere and USQ

Illustrating the reach and relevance of USQ's research efforts in engineering
A John Deere tractor in a field.
USQ's award winning lecturers are highly credentialed and well connected to industry, and many have practised as engineering professionals before joining academia.

As Australia’s only university offering a degree in agricultural engineering, the partnership between John Deere and USQ is a perfect fit.

Working together to develop new agricultural technologies, the work with John Deere and USQ will be managed and directed through USQ’s Centre for Agricultural Engineering (CAE), a leading innovator in agricultural research. The joint venture will focus on the development of machine automation and control and planning for improving producer productivity in all aspects of the growing cycle.

Australian Managing Director (Peter Wanckel) and USQ Vice-Chancellor said the research partnership between the University and John Deere’s Intelligent Solutions Advanced Engineering Group will benefit growers in Australia and globally by reducing agricultural production costs.

‘This research partnership illustrates the reach and relevance of USQ’s research efforts in engineering and highlights the importance international organisations are giving to the development of future technologies that will transform agricultural industries over the years to come,’ the Vice-Chancellor said.

‘We are delighted to work alongside USQ’s respected researchers. Together we can provide additional tools for agriculture to feed, fuel and clothe the increasing global population,’ Peter Wanckel said.

The partnership has recently led to the development of vision-based precision spray technology for use on fallow ground that will reduce input costs and minimise environmental impact in farming businesses across the globe.

See & SprayTM Select uses integrated camera technology to rapidly detect green plants within fallow ground and automatically triggers an application of herbicide. It’s available on new 400 and 600 Series Sprayers from John Deere, making it the industry’s first factory-installed targeted-spray solution. As weed pressure increases across a field, the sprayer operator can switch from an effective targeted-spray solution to a highly productive traditional broadcast machine without leaving the sprayer cab, giving farmers two time-saving sprayers in one. Typical herbicide savings delivered through the technology average 77%*.

Learn more about our world class Research at USQ.

*Based on tank-level sensor values taken at a steady state on John Deere sprayers equipped with and without See & Spray™ Select, before and after covering 75,000 acres of fallow ground with a typical weed pressure of 3,000 weeds per acre, using small and medium spray-length settings starting at 2.3 to 3.2 ft. (0.7 to 1 m), and average growing conditions (seasonal precipitation and temperature) across the US and Canadian Plains and Australian farms. Spray-length settings varied based on ground speed, spray pressure, and boom height. Sprayers were equipped with current hardware and software at time of study. Individual results may vary based on field and growing conditions, weed pressure, spray-length settings, and software version.