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Kazakhstan to use drones for agricultural scouting

28 october 2013, 13:40
Drones in Agriculture
Drones in Agriculture
The Astrophysical Research Center of Kozybayev State University in Northern Kazakhstan Oblast has bought a Russian-made GeoSkan101 drone, Interfax-Kazakhstan reports.

The GeoScan101 drone cost 4 million tenge ($26 thousand). A grant provided by the Kazakhstan Ministry of Education and Science for the project of Earth remote sensing to solve practical tasks in different fields of economic activities, the Center's Director Sergey Sartin told the agency.

"The survey done by a drone equipped with a flight computer and a GPS navigator is much cheaper than the one done by a satellite. That is why the cost of the GeoScan will be paid off after a mere 24 flights," Sartin said.

According to him, the GeoScan will be useful for scouting for soils suitable for seeding of specific agricultural crops, and will improve rotation of crops.

Besides, the drone can be used to survey the flood situation, overflow of rivers and fluctuation of water reserves in lakes - there are nearly 3 thousand lakes in northern Kazakhstan.

"The flying device can also be used to monitor the fire situation in the region and make forestry surveys to spot illegal tree cutting, forest infections and evaluate the forest resources, as well as deal with many other issues," he said.

The device's maximum flight duration is 80 minutes and its maximum altitude is 3.5 kilometers. GeoScan101 takes off from a special catapult and smoothly lands to a selected location using a parachute.

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