Elevation maps added to Sentera’s precision ag software

By Patrick C. Miller | January 17, 2018

Sentera LLC, a Minneapolis-based supplier of remote sensing and drone technology to the agriculture industry, has added elevation maps to its FieldAgent software platform.

Formerly known as AgVault, FieldAgent offers a broad range of precision agriculture capabilities and analytics. The addition of elevation variance maps provides topography and elevation data to ag professionals. The data can be used to increase operating efficiencies in building variable rate prescriptions, create drainage or land-leveling plans and design subsurface drainage.

“Elevation data is important in most agriculture application decisions, and our latest capability will allow users to consider it alongside vegetative health products when making application plans,” explained Reid Plumbo, Sentera’s director of product management.

Elevation data helps customers leverage resources because having data in advance increases the likelihood of doing a project correctly the first time, enabling them to focus on other value-added activities.

FieldAgent is a data analytics platform that ag professionals can use in the office or in the field. When combined with a precision ag sensor on a Sentera drone, it provides NDVI and NDRE zone analysis, population analysis, weed mapping and elevation mapping. It can be used with DJI Phantom, Mavic or Inspire drones.

“Consultants and growers can survey a field and Sentera will produce and deliver an elevation model that reflects different elevation points throughout that field,” said Kris Poulson, the company’s vice president of agriculture. “This information helps customers streamline activities such as land leveling, prescription generation, sub-surface tile design and surface water management, including ditching activities.”

According to Sentera, the elevation maps based on its imagery are available at greater sampling resolution and grid spacing. They can be produced more quickly than maps from legacy techniques. The accuracy of the resulting product depends on the equipment and techniques used to collect the imagery. However, even the most basic drones can generate useful elevation insights.