A multi-year supply agreement has been signed by lidar solutions provider Ouster and Fieldin, an agtech company with a smart farming platform and autonomous technology, for the largest known deployment of retrofit autonomy kits for autonomous tractors in the agricultural industry.
To date, Fieldin has deployed dozens of autonomy kits to its customers’ farms, and plans to deploy more than 100 autonomy retrofit kits on tractors – each equipped with an Ouster OS1 – to customers in the USA this year. At the end of 2022, and as part of its binding agreement, Ouster shipped 100 sensors to Fieldin and plans to deliver several hundred more sensors during 2024.
The deployment of 100 retrofit autonomy kits by Fieldin is stated to be the largest deployment of autonomous tractors in the industry to date. The company’s autonomy kits deliver several levels of automation, consisting of auto-steering and other driving assistance capabilities, autonomous spraying and fully autonomous driver-out functionality in line with local autonomous driving regulations. The autonomous retrofit kits can enhance operational efficiency and provide cost reductions.
Ouster’s OS1 sensors were chosen for use on board the tractors and other farm machinery due to their reliable vehicle localization, navigation and object detection.
Through the partnership, both Ouster and Fieldin aim to overcome challenges that the agricultural industry faces by developing scalable autonomous farming solutions.
“Agricultural equipment operates rain or shine, in fluctuating temperatures and dusty environments, and through narrow aisles of crops completing a variety of routine tasks from spraying and harvesting to mowing,” said Yonatan Horovitz, co-founder and chief autonomy officer, Fieldin.
“Fieldin is modernizing agricultural management from beginning to end to optimize operations and reduce costs, while making a positive global contribution through better food, higher yields and environmental impact management.
“To achieve this at scale, we needed a lidar sensor for our autonomy kit that was robust, reliable, and cost-effective. Ouster delivers all of that and more with excellent customer support and product availability.”
By 2027 it is estimated that the autonomous farming equipment market will be worth approximately U$95bn.