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What is an Intelligent Spray System?

Updated: Dec 17, 2019

Advances in intelligent technology (or smart technology) are all around us. Siri gives us directions as we drive, Alexa plays the music we ask for and Google is finishing our sentences for us as we type our emails. Now, those same advances have come to farming technology, and they’re game changers. Density-based, intelligent sprayers are the wave of the future for fruit growers, nut growers and tree farmers, with amazing ROI and environmental benefits as well. The Smart-Apply Intelligent Spray Control System is the world’s first and only density-based “smart” spraying system. In this post, we’ll discuss what it is and how it could benefit your nursery, fruit growing or nut growing operation.


What is the Intelligent Spray Control System?

The Intelligent Spray Control System is an easy-to-use add-on kit for conventional air blast sprayers. It’s based on technology developed through years of USDA-sponsored research. While ultrasonic sprayers can “see” the trees or plants as the sprayer travels down the rows, the Intelligent Sprayer takes precision a step further by being able to sense the density of the plant and the outline of the tree canopy. As a result of its detection capabilities, the Intelligent Spray Control System precisely targets the architecture of each tree or plant and delivers the exact amount needed to cover it … not a drop more.


How does the Intelligent Sprayer work?

The Smart-Apply Intelligent Sprayer employs LiDAR technology. LiDAR, or light detection ranging, is a remote sensing method that can be used to map the structure of an item, including height, width and density. In the intelligent spraying system, the high-speed LiDAR scanners calculate the density of the trees or plants and direct the spray nozzles to rapidly turn on and off accordingly, matching the pesticide output to the canopy size and leaf density of the crop in real time. The LiDAR system interfaces with an Android-based app that the operator can control as they drive the sprayer. If, for any reason, the operator prefers to revert to conventional spraying methods, he can simply override the intelligent sprayer with the flip of a switch.


What are the benefits of the Intelligent Sprayer?

Smart-Apply Intelligent Spray Control System offers significant benefits over conventional and ultrasonic sprayers for fruit growers, nut growers and tree farmers, including:

  • Improved profitability with up to 73% reduction in chemical use and waste. With greater spraying precision and control, growers who adopt the smart spraying technology will save chemicals, money and time spent mixing and reloading sprayers.

  • Reduced liability with up to 87% reduction in spray loss beyond tree canopies and airborne drift. As the trees and plants are targeted directly, growers experience a dramatic reduction in pesticide drift, which lowers their risk of spray settling on unintended crops or neighboring farms.

  • Increased sustainability and environmental friendliness with up to 93% reduction in spray loss on the ground. Overspraying with conventional air blast sprayers (and even ultrasonic sprayers) results in a great deal of spray seeping into the ground, which can contaminate groundwater and leach into root systems, jeopardizing the health of your trees.

About Smart-Apply

Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, Smart Guided Systems manufactures the Smart-Apply® Intelligent Sprayer™, the only density-based, intelligent spray system available on the market today. At Smart-Apply, we’re committed to helping tree and nut growers and nursery owners across the United States and around the world realize chemical cost savings, improved sustainability through healthier trees and plants, cleaner and safer groundwater and greater overall yields, with an easy-to-use, reliable system based on years of research and cutting-edge technology.


Learn more about the Smart-Apply Intelligent Sprayer™:

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