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Pest Fighting Drones to the Rescue

Drones can be very useful in pest control, reported The Chronicle’s Rachael Murray.

A drone is an unmanned flying device that is controlled remotely from the ground.

Queensland mechatronic researcher engineers, Dr Alison and Dr Cheryl McCarthy, have developed a new drone that can identify pests, noxious plants and signs of disease. The device uses specialist vision technology that sends data directly to farmers. The researchers said the field is ripe for development as automatic analysis is still in its infancy.

The drone was unveiled at the Accelerate Queensland Science and Innovation Program. The Government will use the program to invest $8.75 million into research.

Dr Cheryl McCarthy said there was limited traditional funding for innovative research of this kind in Queensland and that the Government’s new line of funding would be crucial for developing creative new technology.

The money will help new researchers and those who are early in their career to make a signficant contribution to solving problems affecting the state.