It has three new robots working at its facility: Grover, Ada, and Max. The first moves trays of plants to a photo bay for inspection, the second tackles individual plants, and the third handles the amount of water and nutrients to be given to plants based on what the cameras report.
“We get a really high-resolution scan of all the plants,” said David Silver, the director of robotics at CNET.
“This lets us make sure they’re growing on track, predict how much we’re going to have at harvest and see if an intervention is needed.”
This complex system takes care of all sorts of interventions such as water, nutrients, light, temperature, and humidity, resulting in what IronOx calls “renewable food.”
The company’s crops provide high quality and yield and ensure residual irrigation water is reused along with any unconsumed nutrients.
In addition, IronOnx ensures only the right amount of fertilizer is used in its processes since it is a major source of methane, one of the most powerful and dangerous greenhouse gasses.
“Fertilizer requires a lot of energy to produce and emits a lot of greenhouse gasses,” said Silver.
“The total greenhouse gas emissions of world agriculture is comparable to world transportation. If we want to reduce greenhouse gasses, we have to look at the agriculture sector.”
IronOx has trained the AI to function according to the best human farming techniques. “That’s how we train the system, with knowledge experts,” explained Silver. “You decouple action from mobility.”