Submitted to: International Symposium on Physical Measurements and Signatures in Remote
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 1997
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Recent technological advances have resulted in a new farm management approach termed "precision farming". In practice, farmers can apply fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides at variable rates within their fields in response to crop and soil needs, rather than a uniform rate without regard to crop variablilty. To pursue this farm management approach, the farmer needs maps of within-field crop and soil conditions. Such information requirements could be met based on data acquired by currently-available ground-, aircraft- and satellite-based radiometers (termed remote sensing). This review identified the most promising applications for remote sensing in precision farming and laid out an infrastructure that would facilitate adoption of remote sensing by the agricultural community. The assimilation of remote sensing data into precision farming will result in increasing farm profits and decreasing environmental impact.
Precision crop management (PCM) is a newly-emerging agricultural management practice with very intense information requirements. PCM is designed to target agricultural inputs (e.g., pesticides and fertilizers) according to within-field requirements to optimize profitability and protect the environment. Eight areas were identified in which image-based remote sensing technology could provide information that is currently lacking or inadequate, but needed, by PCM systems. The current limitations for image- based remote sensing applications are mainly due to current sensor attributes, such as restricted spectral range, coarse spatial resolution, slow turn-around time, and inadequate repeat coverage.