Design and Development of an Indoor Testing Facility for Downwash and Spray Distribution Evaluations of Agricultural UAV

Authors

  • Siti Amni Ismail
  • Azmi Yahya Universiti Putra Malaysia
  • Ahmad Suhaizi Mat Su Universiti Putra Malaysia
  • Norhayu Asib Universiti Putra Malaysia
  • Anas Mohd Mustafah Universiti Putra Malaysia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.36877/aafrj.a0000157

Abstract

The usage of UAV as a pesticide application technology is becoming a common practice in South East Asia with a very significant proportion of agricultural areas have now being treated using such method. Up to date, about more than 169 of various designs and configurations of UAV have been produced to cater the demand, however it is in doubt whether all these available models were optimally integrated with the spray systems to give the required spraying qualities. Despite of each UAV configuration has their own unique aerodynamic effects, it is crucial to determine their downwash airflow patterns, the spray distributions and the effective application parameters that could give high spraying quality. This research outlines the development of an indoor testing facility and its standardised testing procedure for evaluating the spraying performances of any model UAVs that are used in agricultural applications. The testing facility was developed to imitate the UAV in the actual field spraying operation. With 23 m travel length, the developed testing facility was designed to carry the test UAV up to 100 kg, adjust the test UAV at three levels of spraying heights (1.5, 2.5, and 3.5 m), and moves the test UAV up to a maximum travelling speed of 10 m/s.  The 6x6 m sampling platform structure for the pressure sensors and water sensitive papers was built underneath the rail support structure to measure and collect data for spraying distributions and downwash 3D profile spectrum. With the availability of this indoor UAV Testing Facility, it is expected that any efforts to increase the spraying efficiency using UAV could be tested repeatedly with same standard protocols, so that proper recommendations could be made on the flying requirements of the UAV in order to achieve an efficient agricultural chemical spraying operation.

References

Chen, S. D., Lan, Y. B., Li, J. Y., et al. (2017). Effect of wind field below unmanned helicopter on droplet deposition distribution of aerial spraying. Int J Agric & Biol Eng, 2017; 10(3): 67–77.

Cong, H., Jiyu, L., Yubin, L., et al., (2018). Design and Experiment of a Wind Speed Detection Equipment with Wind Pressure Conversion Near Ground. Journal of South China Agricultural University, Vol.39 No.1 pp.105-111 ref.21.

Faiçal, B.S., Pessin, G., Ueyama, J., et. al., (2017). An Adaptive Approach For UAV-Based Pesticide Spraying In Dynamic Environments. Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, 138 (2017) 210–223.

Feng, T., Qi, L., Chang-liang, L., Bing-kun, J., (2018). Measurement of Downwash Velocity Generated by Rotors of Agriculture Drones. INMATEH Agricultural Engineering, Vol. 55, No.2 / 2018.

Giles, D. K., & Billing R. (2014). Unmanned aerial platforms for spraying: Deployment and performance. Aspects of Applied Biology, 2014;12: 63-69.

He, X. K., Bonds, J., Herbst, A., et.al., (2017). Recent development of unmanned aerial vehicle foor plant protection in East Asia. International Journal of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, 2017;10(3):18-30.

Huang, Y., Hoffmann, W.C., Lan, Y., et.al., (2009). Development of A Spray System For An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Platform. Appl. Eng. Agric, 25 (6), 803– 809.

Meivel, S., Maguteeswaran, R., Gandhiraj, N., et.al., (2016). Quadcopter UAV Based Fertilizer and Pesticide Spraying System. International Academic Research Journal of Engineering Sciences, Vol. no.1 Issue no 1, pp. 8-12.

Morley, C. G., Broadley, J., Hartley, R., et. al., (2017). The Potential of Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) For Precision Pest Control Of Possums (Trichosurus vulpecula). Rethinking Ecology, 2: 27–39.

Puig, E., Mcfadyen, A., Gonzalez, F., (2018). Advances in Unmanned Aerial Systems And Payload Technologies For Precision Agriculture. Advances in Agricultural Machinery and Technologies, CRC Press.ISBN-13:978-1498754125.

Qin, W. C., Qiu, B. J., Xue, X. Y., et. al., (2016). Droplet deposition and control effect of insecticides sprayed with an unmanned aerial vehicle against plant hoppers. Crop Protection, 2016;85:79-88.

Wang, S. L., Song, J. L., He, X. K., et al., (2017). Performances evaluation of four typical unmanned aerial vehicles used for pesticide application in China. Int J Agric & Biol Eng, 2017; 10(4): 22–31.

Wu, Y., Qi, L., Zhang, H., et. al., (2019). Design of UAV Downwash Airflow Field Detection System Based on Strain Effect Principle. Sensors, 2017; 19, 2630; doi:10.3390/s19112630.

Yang, F. B., Xue, X. Y., Zhang, L., et. al., (2017). Numerical simulation and experimental verification on downwash air flow of six-rotor agricultural unmanned aerial vehicle in hover. International Journal of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, 2017; 10(4): 41–53.

Yang, F. B., Xue, X., Cai, C., et. al., (2018). Numerical Simulation and Analysis on Spray Drift Movement of Multirotor Plant Protection Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Energies, doi:10.3390/en11092399.

Zhang, P., Deng, L., Lyu, Q., et al. (2016). Effect of Citrus tree shape and spraying height of small unmanned aerial vehicle on droplet distribution. International Journal of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, 2016;9(4):45-51.

Zhang, S. C., Xue, X. Y., Sun, Z., et. al., (2017). Downwash distribution of single rotor unmanned agricultural helicopter on hovering state. International Journal of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, 2017;10(5):14-24.

Zheng, Y., Yang, S., Liu, X., et. al., (2018). The Computational Fluid Dynamic Modelling of Downwash Flow Field for a Six-Rotor UAV. Front. Agri. Sci. Eng. 2018, 5(2): 159–167 doi: https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018216.

Zhu H., Salyani M., Fox R. D. (2011). A Portable Scanning System For Evaluation of Spray Deposit Distribution Computers and Electronics in Agriculture. USDA-ARS. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compag.2011.01.003.

Downloads

Published

2020-12-25

Issue

Section

ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE