Case Study: How Atlas Correction Service is Positioning Agriculture for Success in Argentina

Plantium VADER
As of early 2017, Plantium had about 600 Atlas-enabled devices (monitors and smart antennas) placed with customers and in operation around Argentina.

Plantium in Santa Fe, Argentina, is a full-service provider of precision agricultural guidance systems to some of Argentina’s largest farming operations, writes Angus W. Stocking on PrecisionAg.com. The company makes its own guidance and control devices, installs them, and offers farmers real-time, remote support if required. Precision agriculture is a very large market, and to compete with multi-national firms in this space, Plantium has to be competitive primarily with outstanding customer service and end-to-end attention to detail. In 2015, Plantium switched to the Atlas GNSS Global Correction Service as the primary means of providing precise, real-time location corrections to their customers, and the receivers they design and build themselves are based on Atlas-ready OEM (original equipment manufacturer) boards from Hemisphere GNSS.

The Atlas GNSS Global Correction Service, developed and administered by Hemisphere, is a subscription-based global corrections service delivered by L-band satellites. “L-Band” is a 1 to 2 GHz frequency band allocated to satellite navigation and telecommunications, and Hemisphere builds L-band capability into Atlas-ready receivers and OEM boards to provide worldwide, scalable, real-time kinematic (RTK) location accuracy with corrections based on all modern satellite constellations — GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo, etc. — and approximately 200 reference stations around the world. Corrections from the reference stations are transmitted to Atlas-enabled receivers via L-band and strategically located geostationary satellites. L-band distribution coverage ranges from 75°N to 75°S, excluding only the extreme polar regions.

“We design, manufacture, and sell precision agriculture systems, including automatic pilot/steering, spraying control, seed metering, etc.,” says Plantium Robotics Engineer Federico Baulies. “We also design and build our own monitors, controllers, and autopilots into existing machinery. Our autopilot and mapping functionalities absolutely require robust positioning in difficult atmospheric conditions, low convergence times, and very high reliability — as close to 100% uptime as possible. We have been using Atlas for well over a year now, and on all these factors it is absolutely a better solution for our applications, and our clients. And Hemisphere has been better in ways we did not expect as well, like their support and the attention they give to their OEM boards that we build into our equipment. Atlas is the best option in our region.”

Providing a better and more reliable location service is critical to Plantium’s business model. “There are some very big, multi-national companies in this market, names like New Holland and John Deere,” Baulies explains. “The only way we can be competitive is to focus on the local market, be competitive on price and quality, and provide much better customer support. As a part of our SBOX7 + DirectDrive + VADER system, Atlas really helps with all of these — it is a well-priced service and very reliable in terms of uptime and accuracy. And from our point of view, the tools it gives us to diagnose and solve problems in real-time are probably its best feature.”

As of early 2017, Plantium had about 600 Atlas-enabled devices (monitors and smart antennas) placed with customers and in operation around Argentina. “In operation” means that the devices are installed on tractors and other agricultural equipment to guide operations like harvesting, spraying, and seeding. Depending on the time of year, Plantium has hundreds (growing into thousands) in use at once. “During the harvest, September and November here, it is very likely that basically all our installed devices will be operating at the same time,” says Baulies. “And it is also during harvest that automatic steering is most important — farmers need to work long hours during this brief window, and our equipment, plus Atlas corrections, let’s them keep working after the sun goes down. That used to be impossible.”

Read the full story on PrecisionAg.com.

Topics:

Americas

Agrichemicals

Global Crop Protection Market: Overcoming Challenges and Finding Opportunity in 2018

The end of the old year and start of the new is a natural time to reflect on where we’ve

wheat-field
Africa/Middle East

Changing the Narrative: It’s Not Just About Yield

For years now when someone outside the industry asks what I do, I give them the “elevator speech,” the 30-second

Brazil-Soybean-field
Americas

CEO: Monsanto Will Prevail in Brazil Patent Dispute

U.S. seeds company Monsanto Co. is confident Brazilian courts will uphold its Intacta RR2 PRO soy seed patent despite a

Americas

Year in Review: Top U.S. Ag Retailer News of 2017

If you as a child watched the television program Sesame Street, you might remember that each episode was brought to

Americas

Bayer ForwardFarming Expands to Latin America

Bayer has announced the expansion of the Bayer ForwardFarming network — a knowledge platform for farmers, focused on customized agronomic

Agrichemicals

Brazil Delays Review of Bayer-Monsanto Merger

Extension potentially foils plans to wrap up the transaction by the end of the year.

Agrichemicals

BASF’s Asmus: Volatility ‘Not a Driving Factor’ Behind Dicamba Drift

BASF field reps investigated 787 soybean symptomology claims during the 2017 season.

Americas

Valagro Launches Biostimulant in Brazil

After being launched in Spain, Egypt, Mexico and Italy, RETROSAL is being officially presented to the Brazilian market.

Agrichemicals

Missouri Latest U.S. State to Set Dicamba Cut-off Date for 2018

Missouri Department of Agriculture 'takes proactive measures to reduce off-target crop injury during the 2018 growing season.'

Agrichemicals

AMVAC’s Trogele: ‘Entire Downstream Channel of Our Industry Will Be Challenged’

AMVAC Chief Operating Officer Bob Trogele offered his insight on the current agrichemical environment, and on how retailers can possibly engage with post-patent companies.

Agrichemicals

Albaugh Enters Collaboration on New Wheat Varietites

Colorado Wheat Research Foundation, Inc., Albaugh, LLC and Limagrain Cereal Seeds, LLC have announced the release of the first two new herbicide-tolerant CoAXium Wheat Production System varieties.

monsanto roundup
Agrichemicals

Monsanto, Farm Groups Sue California Over Glyphosate Warning Requirement

Monsanto Co. says it has joined a coalition of U.S. farm groups in a lawsuit against the state of California to stop a requirement for cancer warnings on products containing glyphosate.

Americas

The Climate Corp., Deveron Partner to Deliver On-Demand Aerial Imagery Data

Based in Canada, Deveron is a leading full-service enterprise drone data company with a growing fleet of drones.

Agrichemicals

Arysta, DuPont Sign Fungicidal Seed Treatment Deal

Arysta LifeScience will supply to DuPont Crop Protection an innovative fungicide technology with an initial focus on corn and soybean seed applied products.

Agrichemicals

The Dicamba Factor to Weigh Heavily in 2018 Decisions

Other newer herbicides, too, are poised to expand growers’ options as weed resistance struggles show no signs of abating.

Agrichemicals

FMC Third-Quarter Profit Jumps on Americas Volume Growth

Third quarter segment revenue grew 6% year-over-year, excluding India.

Agrichemicals

Is it 2008 All Over Again? Chinese Supply Crunch Hits Crop Protection Players

Post-patent players, retailers seek out options and opportunities as the unknowns of supply constraints and consolidation from the Big 6 to the Big 3 take hold.

Agrichemicals

Arkansas Plant Board Votes to Adopt Dicamba Cut-Off Date

Changes will prohibit dicamba use in Arkansas between April 16 and Oct. 31.

Americas

Valent USA Launches Aveo EZ Nematicide

Aveo EZ is a biological seed protectant that colonizes the roots of the soybean plant to reduce nematode reproduction.

Latest News

Biostimulants

Sigma Agriscience Acquires Agricultural Solutions Company AM-AG

Sigma Agriscience, a manufacturer of granular biofertilizers and biostimulants, has acquired a controlling interest in AM-AG, an international marketer and

Africa/Middle East

Kenya Dairy Industry Sheds Light on Market Challenges, Opportunities

In December, I had the privilege to serve as a volunteer consultant with the USAID Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) program in Kenya.

Agrichemicals

Opinion: Why the Crop Protection Industry Needs Strategic Vision

The crop protection industry faces a dilemma. In the uncertain and globally competitive world of crop protection, focus has primarily

NPK

Sustainability at The Mosaic Company: Former CEO Shares Insight into How They Did It

Leading an organization today requires navigating the pushes and pulls of multiple stakeholders: generating shareholder returns, delivering value to customers,

Africa/Middle East

Eastern African Nations Move to Harmonize Fertilizer Regulations

Eastern Africa countries are working to harmonize the region’s fertilizer market, a move that could improve not only demand for