Solar-powered robot mower for vineyards – pv magazine International
French start-up Vitirover has developed an automated PV-powered robotic mower for applications in vineyards and other agricultural fields.
“The robots are built at our head office in Saint-Émilion, in the Gironde department of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region in southwestern France,” said company CEO and founder Arnaud de la Fouchardiere. photo magazine.
The 20W device relies on polycrystalline solar cells, battery and MPPT optimization. “Their price depends on the terrain, the state of the soil, the number of obstacles per hectare, the height of the solar panels, the way in which the motors are installed if they are trackers, and of course other variables,” de la Fouchardière explained.
The robot measures 750 x 390 x 290 mm and weighs 20 kg. It is equipped with four wheels and one motor per wheel. It can work with a maximum slope of 15% and reach a speed of 300/h. It is claimed to be able to work in all weather conditions and cut any type of grass between 4 and 10 cm in height.
The system also uses mobility management software that helps it detect obstacles to get as close to them as possible – less than 1cm – to cut the grass around them. An AGPS tracker system with 15 days of battery autonomy embedded in the robot provides anti-theft security.
The mower can be used in a herd of 50 units on a property of approximately 50 hectares and a radius of 20 km. Each of the robots is connected to an operator, which the company calls the “shepherd”, through cellular networks. If necessary, the shepherd can take control of the robot remotely to carry out the necessary maintenance or intervene on site, for example to unblock a robot.
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