View from the Cab: A 'radicle' invention
By: Kent Casson
It’s always fun to stop out to the Precision Planting PTI research farm near Pontiac as I seem to learn something new each time.
Just last week, the company announced the formation of Radicle AgronomicsTM, a new generation of powerful tools for professional agronomists which enable them to discard manual and error-prone processes and, instead, focus their time on agronomic issues their farmer customers are facing.
Members of the media and others in the ag industry were on hand for this big summer announcement.
“Soil nutrient management is a pressing challenge in modern agriculture, threatening farmer profitability and environmental stewardship,” said Dale Koch, product manager, Precision Planting. “We created Radicle AgronomicsTM to transform soil nutrient management with precise tools and reliable agronomic data so that agronomists are better equipped to guide farmers to superior outcomes.”
Radicle LabTM, the cornerstone of this new suite of tools, is the world’s first fully automated soil laboratory. Its small footprint, self-calibration technology, and the ability to run hundreds of samples unattended, allow agronomists to simplify their workflow. The revolutionary, patent pending MicroflowTM technology built into Radicle LabTM removes all human touches which occur during the traditional laboratory process, giving agronomists the confidence to produce a precision soil analysis in minutes without lifting a finger.
“Radicle LabTM is a result of six years of development, dozens of pending patents, and a large team of scientists and engineers all working together,” Koch said. “This is an exciting day for our dedicated team as we introduce this simple-to-use, yet precise system.”
Agronomists also will find GeoPressTM in the suite of products, which eliminates the chore of record-keeping and bag-handling in soil sampling. As a partner to Radicle LabTM, GeoPressTM mounts on any field-ready vehicle and automatically blends and stores the soil sample in a geo-referenced, reusable container. These full containers are then returned to Radicle LabTM where they are loaded into the system, associated with the field location, and analyzed for soil nutrients. Between the shop and the field, data flows seamlessly between GeoPressTM and Radicle LabTM, eliminating the hassle of hand labeled samples.
To complete the suite, a cloud-based software package connects all steps of the field-to-lab process so agronomists can deliver superior nutrient management recommendations to their clients.
“In the same way that Precision Planting® has transformed the planting process over the past three decades, we are confident that Radicle AgronomicsTM will play a transformative role in the way agronomists and farmers manage their crop nutrient needs for the decades to come,” said Bryce Baker, marketing manager, Precision Planting.