UTV Based Platform for Mapping Soil EC, OM and/or pH

UNCOVER MISSED OPPORTUNITY
Veris ® U Series scans a field's major physical, biological and chemical properties to help you manage each acre to it's full potential.  It's a new soil sensor solution to help increase profitability by removing errors in alternative precision management zones. 

ArrowKEY FEATURES
  • Deep penetrating EC array for rooting zone analysis
  • Sub-surface true soil color scanning  
  • Rapid, replicated pH sensing module

DESIGNED FOR PROFITABILITY
Veris ® U Series allows rapid data collection over a wide window of soil and cropping conditions.  The reduced total investment required and the high value of data contribute to advisors and their growers seeing immediate positive returns on their investment.

• Continuous soil texture (EC) and soil organic matter readings
• Rapid pH module senses slowing and stopping to collect reading in 8-10 seconds
• Elevation data is paired with soil data for topographic features of slope and curvature
• Modular system allows flexibility to add sensors later

SOLID FOUNDATION
Data collected with Veris ®  U Series immediately builds a secure foundation for precision ag applications:

  1. Drive sensor platform across field
  2. Improve and augment data with easy upload to FieldFusion™
  3. Write prescriptions directly in FieldFusion™ or any other Farm Management Information System
  4. Apply the right rate of seed, lime, nitrogen, and much more to the right spot in your field

The Veris Team will walk you through the process from mapping to managing soil variability in your fields.  Send us a message below to learn more or feel free to give us a call!

Ec Disc ArrayPenetrating Electrical Array...

• The Veris U Series uses an electrical array to map from
  0-2ft (60cm) deep into the soil rooting profile.

• The zones identified by a Veris soil EC map are consistent over time,
making it a one-time investment.

• Simple, rugged design makes it easy to collect high quality data with no concern about metal interference, drift or in-field calibration.





Look into your soil...I Scan

• Using the iScan™, a dual-wavelength optical sensor mounted within a specially-configured runner shank, allows the U Series to map underneath crop residue and dry surface soil.

• Soil reflectance readings are collected in the IR and Red wavelengths once per second through a sapphire window on the bottom of the 'runner'. 

• This subsurface measurement takes place where the moisture effect is minimized and soil color is primarily related to soil organic matter variations.



Speed Read P H

Untapped pockets of potential...

• Realize your field's full yield potential by accurately mapping and managing soil pH by creating a high resolution map with SpeedRead™ pH module

• Rapid, repeatable, and reliable soil pH readings are collected using two ion-selective electrodes pressed against field moist soil in the furrow of the 'runner' mounted OM sensor.

• This subsurface measurement takes place where the moisture effect is minimized and soil color is primarily related to soil organic matter variations.


From Mapping to Managing Variability

Soil Mapping FieldFusion™ Rx Writing
Electrical Sensor 50 Gray Layers 50grays Map Editing 50gray
Pull the U3 across the field at 8-15mph with 50-60ft in between passes, stopping whenever a pH reading is desired. Veris online data services clean, calibrate and create application specific management zones. Sensor data can also be ported to any farm management software. An intuitive online interface allows you to write prescriptions with no training or software downloads required.
Step One Step Two Tep Three

U3000 FAQ


1. What about the window—won’t it break?

The 4mm thick optical sapphire is second (to diamonds) in hardness. Field tests and results from rocky areas show that window breakage is rare.

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2. What are operating costs?

Based on average conditions, the operating costs for ground-engaging components—wear plate, window, row unit blades and bearings—are approximately $.25-.40 per acre ($.60-1.00 per ha). These costs may be slightly higher in sandy soil and lower in less abrasive soils. Data-Processing by Veris Mapping Center is required; cost $.25/acre ($.60/ha)

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3. How stable and repeatable are the measurements?

The electronics, light source, and detectors have virtually zero drift due to operating temperature. The unprocessed sensor readings show excellent pattern repeatability.

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4. What calibration is needed?

Operating instructions advise daily collecting a dark/light reference using the two-sided magnetic block provided. This is to insure components are working satisfactorily.

OpticMapper data can be calibrated to organic matter readings using a handful of lab-analyzed samples. Veris’ Mapping Center uses a proprietary multivariate regression analysis technique that includes data from EC and topography sensors, when it improves the calibration.

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5. What about EC? Do I need both sensors?

On some fields, soil texture and soil OM correlate reasonably well. Fields with coarse, low OM soils and darker, finer textured soils will see similarity between the two sensors.

On many fields, soil texture and soil OM show different patterns, due to soil salinity, low OM clays, black sands, etc. On these fields, having EC and OM data means less ground-truthing to verify the patterns. And a prescription can be fine-tuned using the two layers--for example, a silt-loam soil will hold, use, and lose N differently than a silty-clay soil—even if their OM is identical.

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6. Isn’t this amount of precision overkill? Can my big planter vary rates according to the refined map?

40’ cells overlaid on OM map shows that even large planters can take advantage of the extra precision provided by the OpticMapper.

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7. How much moisture is needed?

Enough to allow row unit to penetrate to a 1-2” (2.5-3 cm) depth.

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8. Won’t moisture skew the readings, since dark soil could either be higher in OM or merely wetter?

Soil will absorb more light—and appear darker, due to OM or to moisture—or both. If you’ve observed a bare-soil field drying after a rain, you’ve seen pockets of wet, dark soil. Remote imagery of bare soil has problems correlating to OM due to this micro-relief phenomenon. The OpticMapper operates underneath the ‘noisy’ surface layer where the moisture level is more stable, and where soil color is mostly related to soil organic matter variations. The best answer to this question is in the results: examining correlation stats and viewing validation samples overlaid on Veris maps.

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9. Will it work in no-till?

Yes, fluted coulter ahead of row unit cuts residue and opens a slot for the row unit to follow. Successful mapping directly behind corn combine will depend on crop yield, distribution of residue, and other factors. Mapping through corn residue after winter’s decomposition typically poses no problems.

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10. Is this level of precision needed—why not just use a free soil survey?

The NRCS website displays this warning when downloading field-scale surveys:
 
NRCS posts this for good reason—they know how the surveys were created, and how they were intended to be used. Issues with soil surveys include: Inclusions: Depending on the survey scale, soil surveys allow 2-5 acre inclusions. These are areas of another soil type within a larger soil type. Errors: Many of the errors in soil surveys were a result of not having GPS technology available when the surveys were done. Transitions: soils don’t change on a line—but are a continuum. A soil survey indicates changes as a line, when in reality there is often a sizeable transition zone between soil types. Changing seed population rates at the soil survey lines, instead of where the soil actually changes, could easily cost over $20/acre in lost yield—every year. That makes the ‘free’ soil survey very costly.

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11. What about yield data or remote imagery—is this better?

Crop imagery and yield data show crop symptoms. This can be extremely valuable, especially if in-season remediation can occur. But using only maps of symptoms to diagnose productive potential is like a doctor refusing to use an x-ray or MRI to diagnose an internal medical condition. In modern medicine, doctors use both—they use the best technology available to investigate the root cause of problems, as well as input from the patient about their symptoms. Agriculture is best served with a similar approach. Regarding bare soil imagery: this can be effective if conditions are ideal, but can easily be skewed by surface soil moisture.

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12. What is the data format? How can I generate maps?

EC data is in an ASCII format that can be imported into most mapping programs. OpticMapper data is in a proprietary format that must be processed by Veris Mapping Center for a per acre charge of $.25 ($.60/ha). This process is critical to insuring that the OM estimation is correct. It includes a filtering and quality control check for EC and OpticMapper data, using proprietary key quality indicators. Veris will calibrate the field to lab samples, perform a cross-validation, and return a final field file containing all EC, OM reflectance, and OM Calibration data.

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U3000 Specifications

U3000 --Electronics:

  • Number of wavelengths: 2
  • Spectral range: visible and near-infrared
  • Light source: LED
  • Detector: active area 5.76 mm photodiode
  • Electronics: NMEA 4X hermetically sealed enclosure with military–grade waterproof connections
  • Operating Temperature: -20 C to 70 C
  • Power consumption: .5 amps @ 12 VDC (6 watts)
  • Optical sensor: hermetically sealed aluminum enclosure
  • Window: 4mm thick optical sapphire
  • Instrumentation interface: 9 pin serial
  • GPS Requirement: NMEA 0183 protocol; input from GGA and VTG or RMC strings at a 1 Hz rate (4800-8-N-1); serial connection with DB9 connector, female sockets; GPS signal on pin 2, ground on pin 5; no signal or power on other pins
  • Data recording: Veris SoilViewer on tablet or laptop PC (Windows 7 OS or newer)
  • EC and OM data processed by Veris Data Processing Center for nominal per-acre charge

Sensor Module--Implement:

  • Optical sensor runner unit: runner-style planter with adjustable down-pressure, depth controlling/furrow closing wheels
  • Opening coulter: 20” (51 cm) diameter Turbo-style
  • Coulter-Electrode Blade Diameter: 17” (43 cm); thickness 4mm; with tapered roller bearings and cast iron hubs
  • Rock guards for hub and cap protection
  • 2” ball coupler

U Series in U3000 configuration:

  • Length: Pull-type 102” (259cm); Mounted 60” (153cm)
  • Height: 48” (123 cm)
  • Width: with single EC array 79” (200cm)
  • Weight:  1100 lbs. (500 kg) approx.
  • Tire size: 175/80R13
  • Measurement speed: up to 15mph (24km/hr)
  • Measurement depth: adjustable between 1.5 to 3 inches (38 to 76 mm)

SoilViewer On-the-go mapping software:

  • Displays EC and OM data real-time for coverage verification and visual review of map quality
  • Records geo-referenced data to computer
  • Provides a "Sample Button" to georeferenced lab soil samples.
  • Compatible with Windows 7 and newer

Controller Files

FieldFusion™ exports prescription files in .shp file format that is accepted by the majority of variable rate capable controllers.  Manufacturers of legacy controllers often provide conversion tools like John Deere's Rx Converter for older GS2 display.

Compatible Software*

Ag Leader® SMS™           ArcGIS               Google Earth         MapShots AgStudio         Trimble Farm Works™       SST Summit                 

*Any software that allows the import of .txt or .shp files can accommodate Veris® Soil Data

Cleaning and Calculating

• Proprietary cleaning algorithms identify and remove GPS and sensor outliers.
• Valuable topographic features of slope and curvature are calculated using elevation and GPS coordinates.
• Each field is personally reviewed, graded and feedback provided by a member of the Veris® Team.

Calibrating

Take your management and confidence to the next level by using a minimum of four lab samples to calibrate each sensor layer to a lab value:
• Electrical Conductivity: in most fields EC calibrates to Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC) and/or soil texture (sand, silt, clay)
• IR/Red: these soil color measurements relate and can often be calibrated to % Organic Matter or % Organic Carbon
• pH: calibrate your in-field pH readings to lab pH and buffer pH for an accurate lime prediction.

FieldFusion™

• Managing soil variability has never been easier.  It takes less than 30 seconds to write variable rate prescriptions in FieldFusion™
• Behind the scenes sensor fusion tools provide you the most powerful management zones taking the major yield affecting factors into consideration.

Software Soil Viewer

• SoilViewer data collection software allows real-time viewing of the data as it is being collected in the field.

• Sample Button drops a lat/long and numerical ID for taking samples while mapping or in a follow up trip.

• Runs on Windows based devices like the Surface Pro or laptops running Windows 8 or newer.

Support

• Online user resources and video guides prepare mappers to collect great data.

• The Veris Support and Engineering Team provide free support on weekdays between 8-5pm at 785-825-1978 and [email protected]

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