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GUIDANCE EQUIPMENT USED IN CROP SPRAYERS
The Satloc M3 provides state-of-the-art GPS guidance for air operations. Available with AirStar or the recently introduced AirTrac guidance software, the M3 allows a pilot to control the spray application rate, track the hectares sprayed and it analyzes flight log data.
The Satloc M3 provides guidance to an accuracy of within one meter, allowing the pilot to fly and spray precise patterns, reducing fuel, flying time as well as overall costs. The Satloc M3 provides a moving map that guides the pilot using the light bar and graphic display. The graphic map provides visual guidance for situational awareness as well as indicating flight paths that may have been missed.
Using GPS data from the receiver and simple commands the pilot provides inputs data using a keypad (or optional touch screen if using AirTrac) and the light bar provides highly accurate guidance. This allows the pilot to create consistently spaced rows as well as to match the shape of any field. The graphic display screen provides additional real-time spraying status information, such as swath deposition, field boundaries and mark points.
AERIAL SPRAY APPLICATION EQUIPMENT
Chemical environmental safeguards are maximised with the utilisation of dry coupling loading, whilst all aircraft have internal plumbing with minimal external equipment. The spray system is made up of a boom and nozzle setup. This setup minimizes any drift potential. All aircraft are calibrated using the Professional Aerial Applicators Support Programme (PAASP) that ensures accurate application and placement.
TYPES OF SPRAY AIRCRAFT UTILISED
The aircraft used are mainly Ayres Turbo Thrushes powered by Pratt & Whitney PT6A Turbine engines rated from 750 to 1230 SHP. This type of aircraft is of rugged structure with simplified systems and low maintenance. They are ideally suited to remote, away from base operations, are capable of high capacity loading. Turbine engines are extremely dry in respect of oil leakage with fuel environmental collector tanks installed. Good housekeeping maintenance practices are observed during maintenance activities.
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