Ragnar tractors are now equipped with a GPS & RTK system that unlocks the possibilities of precision agricultural operations. The system enables the tractor to perform field work with an accuracy of 2.5 cm along a pre-programmed path. The RTK positioning technology allows the tractors to work without uneven row and farming errors that lead to unnecessary fuel consumption, all in all, reducing farming costs.
What is RTK?
RTK stands for real-time kinematic positioning. It enhances the accuracy of a GPS system (a type of GNSS system) positioning. GPS receivers transmit signals through the ionosphere and atmosphere to a satellite, where the signal can get disrupted and delayed along the way. This allows GPS to determine something’s position with a low accuracy of 2-4 meters. With RTK, this goes up to an accuracy of 2.5cm.
How does RTK solve satellite positioning errors?
Satellite positioning can be affected by the atmosphere in two ways.
First, the refraction of electromagnetic waves by the ionosphere and troposphere in the atmosphere could change the propagation speed of satellite signals. The refraction, therefore, delays the signal.
Second, errors in satellite positioning can also be caused by the "multipath effect" in the process of propagation, where the satellite signal is reflected by some objects changing the direction and amplitude of the signal. These changed signals are superimposed with the signal that reaches the receiver through a straight path resulting in satellite positioning errors.
This is where RTK comes in. In RTK mode, the RTK base station collects data from satellites, then it transmits its observations and coordinates to receivers. The receivers then process the carrier phase difference on the collected satellite positioning information and received information to obtain results accurate up to the centimeter - all under one second.
Why is RTK game changing in agriculture?
Precision agriculture has been gaining more and more importance in recent years. There is an increase in need for operation accuracy in the cultivation, seeding, crop management and harvesting process. In addition, as the world faces an aging population and labor shortage, solving the problems in traditional farming with high technology has become the first priority.
Ragnar tractors are equipped with an RTK signal antenna, allowing farmers to control and drive the tractors more accurately. This leads to improved agricultural operations, higher outputs, and lower costs from time and effort.
Read more about how precision agriculture is changing the way we farm in our blog post.