Design and implementation of an agricultural UAV with optimized spraying mechanism
The current trend of implementing digital agriculture is a very sought-after topic to conduct researches on due the various benefits that it provides to the community. The technology which is used can provide the agricultural industry with useful information to increase the productivity and make more informed decisions.
Agricultural UAV is growing and developing rapidly throughout the whole world due to its extensive advantages. The agricultural industry has embraced drone technology where these advanced tools are being used to modernise the traditional farming. An agricultural UAV is very suitable and agile for working in a large area of land and rough terrains with high efficiency. Agriculture drones are much bigger in size where they will have a larger and wider spraying span. They can increase and improve the efficiency of spraying more area of land in a shorter duration compared to a knapsack sprayer which will improve long-term success. The entire research design is based on quantitative research, which was conducted through simulation using SolidWorks, MATLAB and Ansys Fluent. SolidWorks was used for planning, modelling and visual ideation of the quadcopter. Each individual components of the quadcopter frame were measured, sketched and designed. An optimal setup for a fully functioning agriculture sprayer drone to obtain maximum spraying efficiency was successfully simulated in SolidWorks. MATLAB was used to simulate the agricultural drone to fly in a specific pattern to water a certain area. Velocity, acceleration, position and flight pathway graphs were plotted. These data were collected to observe how evenly the entire area being sprayed is fully covered. A MATLAB programme was developed to verify all the values chosen for the agricultural UAV. It was used to justify that the entire area being sprayed is fully covered and the droplets are deposited evenly. Ansys Fluent was used to display the velocity that the fluid will be flowing inside the nozzle and spraying it out. A contour plot and velocity distribution graph were plotted out to verify the values chosen for the inlet velocity and the angle of the nozzle. The flow topology of each turbulence model is compared.