Producing a wider range of smart farming products, the Kverneland Group has updated a number of its machinery and technology ranges. Richard Bradley reports.
Following extensive user feedback of its existing Tellus IsoBus terminal, KV has launched a new Tellus Pro.
Looks may be deceiving with the Pro, however, inside it features a new larger processor and a higher definition touchscreen display. This, according to the firm, should help to reduce start up times, and allows it to run a number of new systems:
Ideally suited to older tractors running its Geo kit, KV’s Auto Drive-E is a retro-fit auto-steering system, which can work with the firm’s Global GPS or Global Pro RTK receiver. Wheel angle sensors are used to monitor turning angle, with steering inputs via a motor system on the tractor’s steering column.
The firm says this means the standard steering wheel setup can be used, and as second machine kits can be purchased, the system can be quickly swapped between machines.
To suit its IsoBus-controlled implements, KV has developed a joystick which can be programmed to run up to 44 functions, through 11 buttons and four configurations. Unlike the Auto Drive system, the joystick can be used on any of the firm’s Tellus terminals, or with competitor terminals.
Kverneland also showed its Farm Centre telematics system, which uses a web-based tool to communicate wirelessly to any KV Group implement using a Tellus terminal. This affords task management, positioning, performance monitoring and maintenance indication.
While precision systems can pose benefits, their effectiveness can be limited by users who have not been sufficiently trained to get the best out of them. To combat this, KV Group UK says it runs a number of workshops throughout the year to demonstrate how precision systems can be better utilised.
Claus Udengaard Thomsen, manager of harvest systems for Kverneland Group, adds: “It is not only about educating users to use the systems, we are also trying to make them easier to use.”
Aiming to increase productivity in a smaller drill unit, KV has developed a high-speed maize planting unit, with the firm claiming increased productivity up to 50 per cent compared to existing models.
By using a pressurised seed delivery system rather than the existing vacuum-operated system, the firm says forward speeds up to 18kph can be achieved without impacting on seed placement accuracy. Once seed is metered by the wheel, it is fired down the delivery tube at speeds of about 70kph, rather than via gravity as with the standard vacuum system.
High-speed SX units can be used with the firm’s section control for each row, and are only available on mounted Optima V and trailed TF Profi models.
Front-mounted iXtra Life tank allows liquid fertiliser to be applied while drill maize or sugar beet.
Staying with the maize theme, KV has developed an all-in-one front-mounted tank for applying liquid fertiliser when drilling maize and sugar beet.
The iXtra LiFe front tank offers a 1,100-litre capacity, plus clean water storage, and features a hydraulically-driven pump with filters and regulators. Essentially, think of the tank like a sprayer, with its nozzles located on the drill’s double-disc openers, rather than a conventional front-tank which only offers agitation. Control of application rate and sectional shut-off as with the drill is via IsoBus connection.
iPlough users may be happy to know that switching between work and transport mode can now be done via the firm’s in-cab terminal thanks to a number of hydraulic locking pins. A new frame-mounted depth wheel, which sits inside the plough’s width, is also available as an option. As with the rear-mounted wheel, this doubles up as a transport wheel.
Along with trailed 6.5m and 8m working widths, Turbo cultivators are now available as mounted 3m-6m machines.
Extending the firm’s Turbo tine cultivator range, a number of mounted models are now available.
Available in rigid three-metre and 3.5m, and hydraulically folding 4m, 5m and 6m working widths, the mounted Turbos use four tine rows with 19cm spacings, and a sprung levelling section followed by a roller. KV says the Turbo can be used for seedbed preparation, as well as shallow or deeper working down to 20cm.
Tine options include C-shaped tines with leaf-spring leg protection, or S-shaped Reflex spring tines, with shares from 80-250mm available.
Shown at the launch in Kverneland colours, Vicon’s iXdrive self-propelled sprayer has been updated with a number of systems to improve efficiency and reduce operator workload.
First and foremost, new wheel motors and a transmission and engine control system is featured, combined together the firm says these increase efficiency by up to 15 per cent in the field, and up to 36 per cent on the road. The group says this can relate to combined fuel savings of up to 15 per cent. Driving is also simplified, according to the firm, with only the foot pedal and brake required for on road use.
To prevent stuffing the sprayer’s boom into the ground or crop, a proactive boom guidance system has been developed. The firm says this uses additional sensors to previous Boom Guide Pro, to better respond to movements or slopes for boom sections.
Reducing the chance of major damage if an obstacle is struck, 32m and 40m working width models feature a hydraulically-assisted breakaway system on second and third boom sections, which can fold back up to 90 degrees.