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Ag Machinery Companies Envision the Future Tractor
Envisioning how future machinery will look is top of mind for many machinery manufacturers at Agritechnica 2019.
Case IH Autonomous Concept Vehicle
Introduced to American farmers in 2016, the Case IH Autonomous Concept Vehicle is the creation of Case IH and CNH Industrial’s Innovation Group. The teams based the cabless concept on an existing Magnum tractor with reimagined styling. It features a fully interactive interface, which allows an operator to remotely monitor preprogrammed operations.
The onboard system automatically accounts for implement widths and plots the most efficient paths depending on the terrain, obstructions, and other machines in use in the same field. The operator can supervise and adjust the paths remotely via a desktop computer or portable tablet interface.
It’s this very concept that farmers from around the world were crowding around and snapping pictures of at Agritechnica 2019. Even though the vehicle was showcased at Agritechnica 2017, the concept still drew a lot of interest.
Steyr Konzept Tractor
Steyr, a short-liner ag brand of CNH Industrial, is also exploring a futuristic tractor – the Steyr Konzept – with a zero-emission power train, an innovative drive solution, and an advanced operator station. At the heart of this innovation is a modular hybrid electric drive that includes a highly-efficient diesel engine, a generator, and five electric motors – all of which are individually controlled.
To ensure that power goes exactly where it’s needed, the tractor’s electric motors are networked. An e-torque boost, which gets power from a central battery, supplies added energy for peak power.
Because the mechanical transmission and hydraulic components have been eliminated, the result is a highly efficient, electric, continuously variable drive that has fewer moving parts. In addition, energy can be recovered and stored when traveling downhill for even greater efficiency.
When needed, the vehicle can be charged via a standard charging socket. The tractor’s hydraulics and the PTO are electrically driven. Electrified implements can also be powered by either a high-voltage or low-voltage connector.
The four independent electric wheel hub motors are equipped with the right amount of energy from the battery or generator, according to their real-time requirements, for optimal traction and precise steering.
Filled with Features
In pure electric mode, the concept tractor offers zero-emission operation for both exhaust and noise, which makes it ideal when working close to livestock or in a confined space.
Because torque is available immediately, the company says the vehicle handles exceptionally well and ensures nearly instantaneous vehicle response in varying conditions.
Operators can also expect a smoother ride thanks to the individual wheel suspension. The large glazed windows, which include integrated cameras, ensure better visibility and safety.
Other features like a drone equipped with crop sensors can fly ahead of the Steyr Konzept during fieldwork. It then transmits real-time data back to the cab. This allows the operator to adjust his plan based on actual field conditions.
With an integrated display on the right-hand window, the cab is transformed into a digital farm office, which gives a farmer the ability to manage his farm directly from the cab. The head-up display on the windscreen also calculates key machine parameters that the farmer can view instantly.
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