Automation: The Future of Weed Control in Cropping Systems

  • Stephen L. Young
  • Francis J. Pierce

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Agricultural Production Systems

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 9-9
  3. Principles and Merging of Engineering and Weed Science

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 33-33
    2. John K. Schueller
      Pages 35-49
  4. Primary Weed Control Tools for Automation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 97-97
    2. Scott A. Shearer, Santosh K. Pitla
      Pages 99-124
    3. M. Taufik Ahmad, Lie Tang, Brian L. Steward
      Pages 125-137
    4. Stephen L. Young, D. Ken Giles
      Pages 139-147
  5. Field Applications

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 149-149
    2. Steven A. Fennimore, Bradley D. Hanson, Lynn M. Sosnoskie, Jayesh B. Samtani, Avishek Datta, Stevan Z. Knezevic et al.
      Pages 151-169
    3. Jan Willem Hofstee, Ard T. Nieuwenhuizen
      Pages 171-187
    4. Hiroshi Okamoto, Yumiko Suzuki, Noboru Noguchi
      Pages 189-200
  6. Economies for Automated Weed Control

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 201-201
    2. Josse De Baerdemaeker
      Pages 221-234
    3. Renan Aguero, Noel M. Estwick, Edgar Gutierrez
      Pages 235-246
  7. Future Directions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 247-247
    2. Stephen L. Young, George E. Meyer, Wayne E. Woldt
      Pages 249-259
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 261-265

About this book


This book shifts the paradigm that weeds can only be controlled using broadcast applications of chemical and mechanical techniques in distinct spatiotemporal scales, also referred to as integrated weed management. In fact, true integrated weed management is more than just diversification of techniques and for the first time could be achieved using advanced technologies. Automated weed control is not the proverbial ‘silver bullet’, but an entirely new approach in cropping systems where multiple weed control strategies are available for use at the same time.
In an automated system, sensor and computer technologies onboard a robot would first categorize each and every plant in a farmer’s field as either weed or crop, and then go on to identify the species of weed. Once those identifications were made, multiple weed fighting strategies located on a single platform could be applied to individual plants based on their biology. If the system identified a weed that’s resistant to Roundup™, for example, it could be spritzed with a different herbicide. Or an onboard cutting or flaming micro-tool could be used to kill the plant instead.
The production of a book that addresses weed control of the future will have profound impacts on current and future cropping systems across the globe. To date, no other resource exists on this important and rapidly advancing topic of automated weed control in cropping systems. In the near future, a new approach will be needed for managing weeds, especially with the challenges of weed resistance to herbicides, off-site movement of soil, fertilizers, and chemicals, an increasingly non-agrarian public, labor shortages, economies in recession, and the continued rural to suburban land use conversion. Automation is part of the solution.


Automation Cropping Systems Economics Technology Weeds

Editors and affiliations

  • Stephen L. Young
    • 1
  • Francis J. Pierce
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Agronomy and Haorticulture, West Central Research & Extension CenterUniversity of Nebraska-LincolnNorth PlatteUSA
  2. 2.Depts. Crop & Soil Sc. & Bio.l Sys. Eng.Washington State UniversityProsserUSA

Bibliographic information