295 research outputs found

    Cooperative Agricultural Operations of Aerial and Ground Unmanned Vehicles

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    Precision agriculture comprises a set of technologies that combines sensors, information systems, enhanced machinery, and informed management to optimize production by accounting for variability and uncertainties within agricultural systems. Autonomous ground and aerial vehicle can lead to favorable improvements in management by performing in-field tasks in a time-effective way. Greater benefits can be achieved by allowing cooperation and collaborative action among Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGVs). A multi-phase approach is here proposed, where each unmanned vehicle involved has been conceived and will be designed to implement innovative solutions for automated navigation and infield operations within a complex irregular and unstructured scenario as vineyards in sloped terrains

    Cooperation of unmanned systems for agricultural applications: A theoretical framework

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    Agriculture 4.0 comprises a set of technologies that combines sensors, information systems, enhanced machinery, and informed management with the objective of optimising production by accounting for variabilities and uncertainties within agricultural systems. Autonomous ground and aerial vehicles can lead to favourable improvements in management by performing in-field tasks in a time-effective way. In particular, greater benefits can be achieved by allowing cooperation and collaborative action among unmanned vehicles, both aerial and ground, to perform in-field operations in precise and time-effective ways. In this work, the preliminary and crucial step of analysing and understanding the technical and methodological challenges concerning the main problems involved is performed. An overview of the agricultural scenarios that can benefit from using collaborative machines and the corresponding cooperative schemes typically adopted in this framework are presented. A collection of kinematic and dynamic models for different categories of autonomous aerial and ground vehicles is provided, which represents a crucial step in understanding the vehicles behaviour when full autonomy is desired. Last, a collection of the state-of-the-art technologies for the autonomous guidance of drones is provided, summarising their peculiar characteristics, and highlighting their advantages and shortcomings with a specific focus on the Agriculture 4.0 framework. A companion paper reports the application of some of these techniques in a complete case study in sloped vineyards, applying the proposed multi-phase collaborative scheme introduced here

    Performance of domestic refrigerators in laboratory and home environments

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    Data was collected on temperature control and energy consumption of domestic refrigerators in the home. Data from the survey was extracted to compare the performance of the refrigerators in the home with performance in a test environment. Due to differences in internal and external appliance temperatures between laboratory and home data, the energy measured in the home was normalised to enable direct comparison between laboratory and home energy consumption. Overall without normalisation 61% of appliances consumed more energy in the home than the laboratory. After normalisation this value was increased to 85%. The rank order of energy use was also assessed and found to vary considerably between the laboratory and the home (irrespective of whether energy consumption was normalised for temperature effects). The reasons for the differences in energy use are discussed and suggestions made to provide consumers with a more transparent method to assess performance of refrigerated appliances in their homes

    Temperature and energy performance of domestic cold appliances in households in England

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    This paper reports the results of a large-scale survey in which 998 cold appliances were monitored in 766 properties in England. No surveys published to date analyse such a large dataset, which includes data on ambient temperature, cold appliance temperature (refrigerator and/or freezer) and electricity consumption of the cold appliance. Simultaneous measurements of the temperature inside and outside of the cold appliances and the electricity consumption were taken over a period of seven days during a nine-month period in 2015. An interview was also conducted with the householders to collect further information about the cold appliances and their usage patterns. The cold appliances monitored in the work included fridge-freezers (52%), refrigerators with ice-box (6%), larder fridges (14%), chest freezers (9%) and upright freezers (19%). It was found that for all monitored cold appliances with valid data that: the mean ambient temperature was 18.5┬░C; the mean refrigerator temperature was 5.3┬░C; the mean freezer temperature was -20.3┬░C; and the mean electricity consumption was 354 kWh per year. Significant differences between the electricity consumption of different types of cold appliance were determined from statistical analysis
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