LiDAR technology is changing the world of farming and it will bring a revolution in agriculture all over. Earth’s population will be 10 Billion by the year 2050 and we will definitely need better solutions to cope up with the increasing demands.
Agriculture lands are not uniform and considering this fact, LiDAR turns out to be an amazing solution for crop viability, crop categorization and crop mapping. LiDAR is considered as a best way to measure the distance and dimensions of a landscape and buildings.
Why use this awe-inspiring LiDAR technology in Agriculture?
LiDAR can easily do topographic analysis and predict soil properties. Topography stands for the study of shape and land features of landscape. It helps in slope determination, aspects and elevations which benefit the management practices to direct limitation in production. Soil type, soil erosion risk can be calculated and then observed for more productivity.
Experts can easily determine the soil type and soil content from the data generated and gives advice to the farmers on the best possible farming practices also help farmers in choosing crop types and fertilizers.
Soil erosion, majorly the top soil which is more nutritive and highly productive is flown away due to heavy rainfall. This affects crop yield. The erosion occurs in the form of sheets and rills mostly during heavy storms. Soil erosion risk maps can be generated using LiDAR and the RUSLE. LiDAR generated data can help in reducing erosion by adopting various cropping methods.
Using these insights, 3D models can be prepared and farmers can predict crop yields in any given place which will help in maximizing the profits. LiDAR can be used to detect water flow paths in the field, water catchments, locating trees and terrain analysis. Water flow direction in and near the farmland will help farmers in water management and in irrigation practices.
Crop Quality Analysis
Crop Quality analysis can be done using LiDAR generated data and can be compared to the ideal standard. Airborne LiDAR survey helps in monitoring the farmland and reduces the ultimate loss.
Agriculture potential productivity can be optimally increased. Remote sensing is a boon for farmers and a gift to agricultural practices.
There are many open sources where one can download free LiDAR data. Open topography, USGS Earth Explorer, United States Inter-agency Elevation Inventory (USIEI), NOAA Digital coast webmap, LiDAR online and many more.
We need reliable data and statistics for agriculture production as the population growth is a matter of concern worldwide.
According to the UN sexual and reproductive health agency, in the State of World Population 2019 report “India’s population in 2019 stood at 1.36 billion, growing from 942.2 million in 1994 and 541.5 million in 1969. The Indian population grew at an average annual rate of 1.2 percent between 2010 and 2019”. This fact itself reveals the future demand of agriculture but traditional practices are not enough to match this, hence we have to start working smart and adopting LiDAR in regular agriculture practices will definitely help.
- LIDAR and its use in agriculture, Agricultural Innovation Submission 27, Bob Howard September 2015 B App Sc (App Geol) Grad Dip (Computer Studies) Grad Dip (Environmental Management), www.gesmapping.com.au