Harsewinkel/Oirlo/Hasbergen-Gaste/Soest, in September 2023. Müthing GmbH & Co. KG became the fourth partner to join the cross-manufacturer agricultural technology autonomy group known as “3A – ADVANCED AUTOMATION & AUTONOMY.” Practical testing of the technology developed by 3A for highly automated to autonomous field cultivation using mulchers is already underway.
3A Gains New Partner
The open and cross-manufacturer approach of 3A – ADVANCED AUTOMATION & AUTONOMY has garnered significant interest from both national and international agricultural technology manufacturers. With Müthing being one of the leading European providers of mulching technology, they are now a part of the 3A Autonomy Network. The 3A development partners explain, “In addition to soil cultivation, sowing, and planting, crop residue management is also suitable for highly automated to autonomous planning and implementation. Like all developments in the autonomous network, the primary focus is on reducing the operator’s workload and ensuring consistently high work quality through fully autonomous execution of recurring processes.”
From Semi-Autonomous Mulching to Fully Autonomous Crop Residue Management
Semi-autonomous crop residue management can already be carried out using a conventional mulcher, with the operator responsible for monitoring the attachment and work quality. The next step involves fully autonomous process planning, execution, monitoring, and documentation. Müthing has developed an electrified mulcher for this purpose, equipped with sensors that communicate with the AgBot or the tractor, which is fitted with an AgXeed Box via the 3A interface. This ensures that the work process runs smoothly within specified parameters, maintaining the desired work intensity and quality. Technical parameters such as temperature and powerrecording of the electric mulcher drive, slip monitoring, speed fluctuations on the belt drive, and vibration monitoring are recorded. In case of excessive vibration or persistent drive overload, the autonomous unit is halted, and the operator is promptly informed.
Through intelligent control and continuous adaptation to prevailing working conditions, autonomous units will automatically adjust driving speed to the amount of crop/biomass in the future. Other companies have also expressed interest in joining the 3A group and have initiated initial discussions with the founding partners.
About 3A – ADVANCED AUTOMATION & AUTONOMY
3A is the first cross-manufacturer autonomy group in agricultural technology. Its mission is to expedite the development, further enhancement, and market launch of technologies for highly automated to autonomous fieldwork, simplifying standardization of interfaces and communication protocols. The initial solutions developed by the group include the AgXeed Box, CLAAS Autonomy connect, and Amazone AutoTill. The association, founded by CLAAS, AgXeed, and Amazone, will receive a silver Innovation Award from the Innovation Commission at Agritechnica 2023.