John Deere and Airbus win award for live monitoring of nitrogen
John Deere and Airbus have created a tool capable of live monitoring of nitrogen balance in the field. The project recently scooped a silver medal for the SIMA 2019 show. Peter Thomas Keaveney reports

John Deere and Airbus have collaborated to create a tool called Live NBalance. This tool is capable of live monitoring of nitrogen balance in the field. The project is based on a combination of satellite images and machinery data, which continuously observe nitrogen uptake by the crop in each part of the field.

John Deere noted that the tool is capable of precisely checking the efficiency of a particular nitrogen application. The service was designed to allow farmers to make accurate, informed, site-specific decisions about fertiliser application.

Farmers will be able to observe the details of the total nitrogen uptake over time through satellite images. John Deere also explained that farmers will be able to identify non-uniform uptake rates and delays in plant growth. The farmer will be able to see how much nitrogen is still available to the crop at any time, or if the plants aren’t getting enough, etc.

After the harvest, this tool summarises the total N applied and removed, ready to use for regulation purposes if required.

This new tool is set to coincide with John Deere’s manure sensing system using the HarvestLab 3000 sensor on slurry tankers where nitrogen and NH4-N content of slurry is measured. As previously reported by the Irish Farmers Journal, the HarvestLab 3000 sensor also measures the nitrogen content in the harvested crop as it passes through the forager.

All of this NBalance data is easily accessible for users on the cloud.

Positive year for European tractor sales
European Tractor demand remains stable in 2018, despite lower registration numbers in comparison to 2017.

European agricultural machinery representative CEMA has gathered tractor sales figures for 2018.

The data shows that approximately 177,000 tractors were registered across Europe in 2018 – 39,784 of these were under 50hp, while the remaining 137,503 were over 50hp.

Registration numbers for 2018 declined by 12% in comparison with 2017, still resulting in a positive year for sales.

CEMA explained that the reason for decline was due to high numbers of pre-registered tractors in December 2017.

EU legislation stated that all tractors in compliance with previous technical requirements had to be registered before the new legislation introduction date which was 1 January 2018, this as result had an impact on both years’ figures.

The most popular power band is 80-100hp, while 2018 saw an increase in tractors over 175hp registered and a decrease in registrations under 175hp.

McCarthy Plant and Agri celebrate 25th anniversary
McCarthy's Plant and Agri Sales celebrated 25 years in business. Peter Thomas Keaveney reports.

With two depots in Co Cork, McCarthy Plant and Agri Sales is well known around machinery circles, especially in the southern half of the country.

Last week, the Munster-based firm celebrated 25 years in business.

They celebrated the event in style with a hugely impressive display of machinery.

The business was started off by John and Colette McCarthy back in 1994. It is today run by Timmy, Fidelma and Conor McCarthy.

The large number of attendees were treated to a number of guest speakers on the night, including Trevor Tyrell, CEO of Claas UK and Ireland, Matt Dempsey from Irish Farmers Journal and Anna May McHugh from the National Ploughing Association.

McCarthy’s main branch is based 2km outside Carrigtwohill village. In 2013, the company opened a second branch in Lisavaird, Clonakilty.

Over the two open days, the company held a raffle for Marymount University Hospice, who offer respite, intermediate palliative and residential care services.

The raffle raised €4,000.

Claas offers new features in iPad ISOBUS control app
Claas has introduced new features to its iPad ISOBUS control app Claas Easy. The app now sees the ISOBUS Task Controller Basic (TC BAS) function.

Claas has introduced new features to its iPad Isobus control app Claas Easy. The app now includes the Isobus Task Controller Basic (TC BAS) function.

Job management and documentation is now easily connected to using 365FarmNet online.

The on-board app offers TC BAS documentation with all AEF-certified field maps.

This means any scheduled job file can be imported into the app or exported to any AEF-certified farm management system for further analysing or processing.

This live data exchange means less time is spent on job documentation as it can be done from the machine

Once linked to 365FarmNet, an extended range of functions can be accessed.

Data can be exchanged directly over the internet, eliminating the need to send email attachments. Jobs can be created in 365FarmNet, then accessed and processed in the app.

This live data exchange means less time is spent on job documentation as it can be done from the machine.

The easy on-board app allows the iPad to become an Isobus terminal.

This removes both the cost and need for any particular Isobus terminal as all that’s needed is a cab mount to hold the tablet and a Claas Wireless Interface (CWI).

The CWI makes a wireless connection between the iPad and Isobus, allowing full machine control through the iPad from the cab, eliminating the need for wires.

According to Claas, the day is fast approaching when the driver will be equipped with an iPad acting as a universal terminal, with an app for all machines.