Using Ultrasonic Sensors for Automatic Slope Compensation

Chemically resistant ultrasonic sensors are used in vineyards to optimally position sprayer booms

Winegrowers must protect their vines against disease and pests. Manufacturers of agricultural machinery assist the winemakers in this cause by producing vehicles that can spray the vineyards with fungicides and plant-strengthening agents in both an effective and economical manner. Precise positioning of the mist and spray nozzles is an essential prerequisite for this. The chemically resistant EMT version of Turck's RU100U ultrasonic sensor ensures that the nozzles are constantly in the correct position by reliably detecting the ground clearance along the rows of vines.

Your Benefits

  • Ensures highly efficient spraying by continually adjusting the position of the nozzles
  • Can be used in various applications and has a long service life due to its sturdy design
  • Can easily adapt to use in new environments via teach-in

  • Dynamic: The alignment of the sprayer boom follows the contours of the terrain

  • Compact ultrasonic sensors monitor the intended clearance from the ground

  • A resistant PTFE layer protects the transducer face of the stainless steel sensor

Wide-range terrain tracking

The moveable sprayer boom enables the nozzles on the machine to be adjusted and used in up to six rows at the same time. Underneath the frame of each sprayer boom is a sensor with a suitable switching range based on the ideal ground clearance. The ultrasonic sensor has a range of up to 100 cm and a blind zone of just 15 cm. If a sprayer boom dips below the intended clearance from the ground, the diffuse mode sensor sends a signal and the machine automatically corrects the height of the boom. 

The winegrower benefits from adjusting the gradient of the sprayer boom in two ways: Firstly, the crop-protection agents continue to be precisely applied to the surface of the leaf and secondly, the booms do not damage any of the plants as the sprayer moves around the vineyard.

Innovative protection against aggressive media

The sensors used in this application must be highly robust to withstand the spraying of chemical compounds. With this in mind, Turck uses stainless, acid-resistant steel when manufacturing its special ultrasonic sensors. The face of the transducer is also coated with resistant PTFE plastic. This ensures that the sensor housing remains sealed even when used in vineyards over a number of years, plus the PTFE coating protects the sensor against deposits.