Development of Unmanned Aerial Systems for Use in Precision Agriculture: The AggieAir Experience

Document Type

Conference Paper

Journal/Book Title/Conference

2015 IEEE Conference on Technologies for Sustainability (SusTech)


Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers


Salt Lake City, UT

Publication Date



Researchers at the Utah Water Research Laboratory at Utah State University have developed a small unmanned aerial system (UAS) called "AggieAir" for use as a precision remote sensing tool. The AggieAirTM UAS platform can be launched and landed almost anywhere. It carries scientific-grade cameras that capture imagery in the visual (red/green/blue), near infrared, and infrared (thermal) spectra. It has been applied in several western states to provide high-resolution imagery in support of research on water, natural resources, and agricultural problems. This paper focuses on uses of AggieAir in the generation of information for use in agricultural operations, especially with respect to precision agriculture. Examples of the use of AggieAir multi-spectral imagery include high-resolution estimation of, evapotranspiration rates, crop tissue nitrogen and chlorophyll, surface and root-zone soil moisture, and crop leaf canopy volume.

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