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Title: Efficacious insect and disease control with laser-guided air-assisted sprayer

item Zhu, Heping
item ROSETTA, R - Oregon State University
item Reding, Michael - Mike
item ZONDAG, R - The Ohio State University
item Ranger, Christopher
item CANAS, L - The Ohio State University
item FULCHER, A - University Of Tennessee
item Krause, Charles
item SHEN, Y - Jiangsu University
item LIU, H - Jiangsu University
item CHEN, Y - The Ohio State University
item OZKAN, E - The Ohio State University
item Derksen, Richard
item Locke, James
item ERNST, S - The Ohio State University

Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/25/2015
Publication Date: 8/6/2015
Publication URL:
Citation: Zhu, H., Rosetta, R., Reding, M.E., Zondag, R., Ranger, C.M., Canas, L., Fulcher, A., Krause, C.R., Shen, Y., Liu, H., Chen, Y., Ozkan, E., Derksen, R.C., Locke, J.C., Ernst, S. 2015. Efficacious insect and disease control with laser-guided air-assisted sprayer. 13th Workshop on Spray Application in Fruit Growing, SuproFruit 2015, July 15-18, 2015, Lindau/Lake Constance, Germany. 80-82.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Efficacy of a newly developed air-assisted variable-rate sprayer was investigated for the control of arthropod pests and plant diseases in six commercial fields. The sprayer was integrated with a high-speed laser scanning sensor, a custom-designed signal processing program, an automatic flow controller, pulse-width-modulated variable-rate nozzles and a multi-port air-assisted delivery system. It had the capability to automatically apply appropriate variable amounts of pesticides based on tree canopy structures and occurrence in real time. Pest control efficiency of the new sprayer was also compared with conventional constant-rate sprayers. Target pests and diseases included aphids, potato leaf hoppers, pod gall midge, pear rust, apple scab and powdery mildew on various host plants. With the comparable insect control efficiency and better disease controls or prevention, the average application rates during two growing seasons with the laser-guided sprayer were 206 L/ha in field #1, 410 L/ha in field #2, 460 L/ha in field #3, 225 L/ha in field #4, 190 L/ha in field #5, and 260 L/ha in field #6 while the average application rates from the conventional constant-rate sprayers in these six fields were 514, 770, 1240, 440, 636, and 570 L ha-1, respectively. Moreover, the laser-guided sprayer reduced pesticide use by 47% to 70%. The new sprayer was able to drastically decrease pesticide usage thus reducing environmental impact and enhancing applicator safety.