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Digitalizing and controlling a conventional tractor for autonomous farming work

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2021 ASABE Annual International Virtual Meeting  2100107.(doi:10.13031/aim.202100107)
Authors:   Hao Wang, Yaxin Ren, Weiqiang Fu, Zhijun Meng
Keywords:   Dynamic mode decomposition, Pure pursuit control, Robot tractor, Smart agriculture.

Abstract. We present a solution to converting a conventional tractor to an autonomous vehicle. The solution consists of two steps: digitalizing vehicle status, and developing an autonomous navigation system. A vehicle control unit is designed to analyze the driver operations, transmit the commands to actuators, and broadcast tractor statuses following the ISO 11783 protocol. A dual-antenna GNSS position system provides centimeter-level accuracy vehicle position, velocity, orientation, and roll angle. This configuration enables the robot tractor to work in auto-steering mode and fully autonomous mode. A vehicle state simulator based on the dynamic mode decomposition method is developed to improve the vehicle positioning accuracy. In addition, a modified pure pursuit control algorithm provides about 4.4 cm path tracking accuracy with the vehicle speed up to 4 m/s. The solution of digitalizing and controlling a tractor is proved to be a sustainable and effective way to reduce human labor dependency and to improve the working quality.

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