Our First Experiences Flying a Drone with an NIR Camera

We have been learning how to fly our drone and capture meaningful images and data from some test fields this spring!

Attached to our drone is a near-infrared (NIR) camera capable of capturing NDVI images. NDVI images are created using visible and near-infrared light reflection measurements to determine areas with healthy vegetation and areas with unhealthy or sparse vegetation. These images can help us to assess the health of the crop, as well as identify problem areas that may need scouting attention. While we are in the beginning stages, we thought we would share with you some of the interesting images we have captured!

The image (bottom left) was captured in April over a cover crop field. The image at the bottom right is a field that we flew in May during the early development stages of a corn field. Areas in red are areas with sparse vegetation and areas in green are areas with thicker, healthier vegetation. We know that the areas in green have thicker and healthier vegetation because they are reflecting more of certain wavelengths of light.

An NDVI image captured in April over a cover crop field.

An NDVI Image we captured on a clear day in May over a corn field at the ~V3 stage

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