An innovative solution for the application of plant protection products in steep slope viticulture is now available: Spray drones, officially approved by the JKI.
The newly developed spray drones, especially designed for the requirements of steep slope viticulture, are equipped with drift reduced Lechler Air-Injector compact flat spray nozzles IDK 90-025C as standard nozzles.
Spray drones can be used as an alternative to manually carried out plant protection measures such as knapsack or hose spraying. With a span width of approx. 2.5 m and a working width of 3 m, the spray drone uses radar sensors to detect the terrain and regulates the flight altitude accordingly in real time during the automatic overflight. Its flying speed of up to 12.8 km/h in automatic mode allows the treatment of one hectare of vines in about 15 minutes.
In the future, spray drones will make it easier for winegrowers to protect plants in steep and impassable terrain – and turn them into "spray pilots", so to speak.
Benefits of spray drones for spraying:
Official testing and recognition as a plant protection device was carried out by the Julius Kühn Institute (JKI) in Quedlinburg.
The project was supported and funded by the Ministry of Rural Areas and Consumer Protection Baden-Württemberg and the European Commission.
A winery from Mundelsheim and the cooperatives from Lauffen a.N. in Württemberg and Glottertal in southern Baden were also involved.