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Wild blueberry is a perennial low shrub crop and mostly harvested by mechanical harvester. The harvester operator needs to maintain the optimum height of harvester head according to the plant height to increase harvestable fruit yield and quality. The visual estimation of plant height and manual adjustment of harvester head height according to the variation in plant height are laborious and stressful for the operator. An ultrasonic plant height measurement system (PHMS) was developed and incorporated into a commercial mechanical harvester for automatic plant height measurement in real-time during harvesting. The system comprised of three ultrasonic sensors, a real-time kinematics differential global positioning system (RTK-GPS), a custom program and a ruggedized computer. The custom program acquired and processed ultrasonic sensing data in real-time. Two wild blueberry fields were selected in central Nova Scotia to evaluate the performance of the PHMS for plant height measurement in real-time during harvesting. Manually measured plant heights from 24 randomly selected plots were compared with real-time sensed plant height data. The information obtained from the PHMS could help to control wild blueberry harvester head automatically to increase harvester and operator’s efficiency.
height, real-time, ultrasonics, blueberry
. 2016. An Automated Real-time Plant Height Measurement during Wild Blueberry Harvesting. CSBE/SCGAB 2016 Annual Conference, Halifax, 3-6 July 2016.
CSBE/SCGAB 2016 Annual Conference, Halifax, 3-6 July 2016.
Session 4C: Precision Agriculture/Power and Machinery
Canadian Society for Bioengineering