New Delhi, Sep 6 (IANS) Engineering conglomerate Escorts on Thursday announced the launch of its automated concept tractor that is equipped to use next generation digital vehicle technology for precision-based farming.
An Escorts statement here said this is the first offering under its Automated Farming Solutions programme and it has been developed in collaboration with seven major technology companies – Microsoft, Reliance Jio, Trimble, Samvardhana Motherson Group, Wabco, Bosch and AVL.
“The partnerships and relationships will enable development of a range of farm machines with electric transmissions, autonomous applications, remote vehicle management, data-based soil and crop management, and sensor-based guided farm applications,” it said.
According to Escorts officials at the launch event here, the company will be ready to launch the autonomous tractor at commercial level in around 18-20 months.
The statement said that in view of the need of Indian agriculture for precision based agro solutions to maximise output and improved farmer income, Escorts has entered into various collaborations.
“Escorts has collaborated with AVL for electric driveline technology, with Trimble for sensors, controls, water level management system and automated e-steering, with Samvardhana Motherson Group for Smart Interface Cabins and Care Plus – a two-way voice interface for real time service.”
On the automated farming solutions project, the company has also collaborated “with WABCO for vehicle controls and automation technology, with Microsoft for its Cloud and AI (artificial intelligence) technology, BOSCH for future emission readiness and with Reliance Jio for enhancing farm machinery life cycle with networked platform providing top-notch service and genuine spare parts across the country,” it said.
Commenting on the development, Escorts Chairman Nikhil Nanda, who was elevated to the post last month, said in a statement: “Last year, we launched world’s first electric compact tractor concept and this year we have pioneered autonomous farming solution in association with seven strategic technology tie-ups, which will transform agriculture practices for better returns to farmers.”
The statement said that Escorts’ platform of shared services and agricultural solutions named Escorts Crop Solutions will look to offer end-to-end, start-of-the-art equipment for paddy farming under pay-per-use rental model.
“Traxi is a service platform to aggregate farm equipment owners to rent out their equipment to small and marginal farmers. Smart Parts will offer genuine parts and skilled service at an affordable price.
“Digitrac as a front-end farmer interface for inputs and customised information and Farm Power will aim to provide advanced implements and equipments for efficient and productive farming,” it said.
At the launch event, Escorts also showcased their tie-up technology for high-end cranes developed by its new joint venture with Tadano of Japan, as well as its high-end locomotive brake electronic solutions.