Drone technology has skyrocketed over the past decade driving costs down and the number of potential applications up, one being agricultural crop monitoring. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) is an imaging technique used to visualize near infrared light, which happens to be a very good indicator of plant health and productivity. This project aims to explore the potential of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s) using NDVI imaging for crop monitoring and assess the feasibility of the process by developing a UAV with a NDVI camera to create NDVI maps from the aerial crop images. These maps will be cross referenced with soil samples to check for proof of concept and accuracy. The project will be presented at the 2015 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineering conference in New Orleans, Louisiana in the student poster and paper competition and at the Cal Poly BRAE senior project presentation banquet. The final product will illustrate the feasibility, efficiency, and economic benefits of UAV NDVI crop imaging and offer a solution to the dated and tedious process of crop monitoring that is currently physically walking the field.
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