Cummins powers GUSS - the world's first autonomous orchard sprayer
Crinklaw Farm Services Inc worked alongside Cummins to develop a suitable long term power solution for their Global Unmanned Spray System (GUSS).
That solution is the Cummins QSB6.7 engine, which now powers the world’s first and only autonomous orchard sprayer. The QSB6.7 is a fully intergrated system rated at 173hp (129 kW) with cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and a High Pressure Common Rail fuel system.
GUSS is helping to ease the labor challenges facing agriculture, and provide gains in operational efficiency, precision and safety. Using a combination of GPS, vehicle sensors and software, a single employee can remotely monitor up to 10 GUSS sprayers at once across a variety of orchards.
Gary Thompson, Marketing Director for Crinklaw Farm Services, said: "GUSS’s whole design philosophy is based around innovation, efficiency and performance – building a machine that can spray row after row, day after day. For that, we needed a power solution we could rely on and Cummins has been very supportive in providing an exemplary engine package coupled with machine integration expertise.
"The QSB6.7 delivers clean and efficient combustion with a potential range to cover hundreds of acres. For us, it’s going to be a very exciting year, our new manufacturing facility in Kingsburg, California will be completed, enabling sales of GUSS globally."
Ann Schmelzer, Global General Manager of Agriculture at Cummins, added: "As an incredibly innovative sector, agriculture provides a fantastic platform for autonomy, particularly when higher operational efficiencies and increased productivity are primary objectives. Integrating ultra-clean diesel engines with autonomous service vehicles is a great example of how the agriculture industry continues to move forward. We are excited to power such groundbreaking innovation."
So far, Crinklaw Farm Services has built seven Cummins-powered GUSS autonomous sprayers which operate as part of their custom spray application service for mid to large scale tree farms.