Since 2019, Agrolab has operated a multispectral drone capable of flying over large field trials and providing both RGB (aka a “normal” image) images and calculating indexes to measure plant health. Throughout the years Agrolab’s two experienced drone pilots have flown more than 300 trials and taken around 100.000 images in total.
- What is a drone image? A drone image can can be one of two types of images. Either a single image taken on a manual flight providing a scenic photo of a field during sunset or a tractor during harvest. Or it can refer to the process of creating an orthomosaic; i.e. a series of overlapping images combined into one, high-resolution image that provides the greatest detail possible. Agrolab always provides an orthomosaic, to ensure the that all details in a plot can be seen from above.
- Why use drone images? Drone images provides both the study personnel and the sponsor with a deeper insight into the trial progress. One can easily compare plot results and determine the best course-of-action early in the trial. Calculation of individual NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) values also provide a very exact measure of plant health as determined by chlorophyll activity. NDVI images are especially useful in trials of fungicides, fertilizer, desiccation, and toxicity, and in many other types of trials.
- What is a logarithmic trial? Logarithmic spraying is well suited for creating dose-response data and getting obtaining results either through a visual assessment or NDVI. As opposed to a typical trial where there are fixed dosages sprayed in 4 replicates/plots, a logarithmic trial has an infinite dosage. Parameters such as the minimum lethal dose of a product, the maximum tolerated dose, and the maximum dose that produces no symptoms can be calculated from the results of this type of trial.