Unimagdalena is developing a technology to apply it to banana crops

A group of young Masters in Engineering students have decided to put their knowledge to the test in the realization of a project focused on precision agriculture and financed by the General Royalty System, with the title “Intelligent systems for resource management and disease detection in banana production systems in the departments of La Guajira and Magdalena’, where the Universidad del Magdalena has been designated as the implementing agency.

Jorge Gómez Rojas, full-time professor and director of the Intelligent Systems Research Project, assured that through this project, which is multidisciplinary with other techniques such as agronomy and systems, they intend identify diseases in specific crops.

“For now, the crop in which we are implementing this project is the banana, but it can be extrapolated to any other fruit that is produced in a department, allowing the improvement of competitiveness and the transfer of knowledge and l social ownership, which is one of the main objectives. “said Gómez Rojas.

Some characteristics of the materialization of the project through two drones, according to the group of researchers, are related to a large network of sensors. One of the drones is equipped with a multi-spectral camera that can observe various things that the human eye cannot perceive, both above ultraviolet and below infrared. The director of the project specified that, “thanks to the processing of images, it allows the determination of certain indices related to the diseases of the cultures”.

The other drone that is part of this research project is a specialized device for fumigation in crops, which accelerates and improves the productive capacity of the fruit marketer, “the first drone allows us to do the detection and the second accesses corrective action to improve production”, explains the teacher.

It is important to mention that this is a project that is just beginning, since it has a long duration of three years and only researchers have three months of progress and where several professionals make their contributions, branches of agronomy, systems engineers, electronics engineers, all graduates of Alma Mater but also Masters in Engineering and PhD students, join this great field of precision agriculture which aims to strengthen our territory .

This state-of-the-art technology, which is now being explored by several students and graduates of this institution of higher education, has been classified as a pioneer in this field of research by Geosystem, “our technology supplier told us that we are the first university in Colombia to have this type of research-oriented devices in the development of new applications,” said Jorge Gómez Rojas.

With this type of project, Unimagdalena is at the forefront in terms of precision agriculture, in terms of research and knowledge transfer.

Rafael David Linero Ramos, who is also part of the project, graduated from this institution, said that on this occasion they are betting on the detection of different growing conditions in terms of diseases, detection of pests and pests. “This time we have bet on the resources of the general royalty system, since it is state-of-the-art equipment and we have been able to access 2 billion pesos to acquire and invest in different types of sensors.”

Currently, three graduates of the Electronic Engineering program and two Masters in Engineering students from the Universidad del Magdalena are part of this research.

Meanwhile, this startup of projects that include advanced technology will serve to transfer knowledge to small, medium and large producers in the department of Magdalena and La Guajira in terms of increasing crop yields, the idea of ​​the researchers of Intelligent Systems is to generate scientific articles, theses to which university researchers, but also producers can have access and then submit it to the examination of the Superior Council to generate the possibility of having sales of services from Alma Mater to the various producers of the Department.

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