HANOVER - (13 November) -
Following the votes of the DLG (Deutsche Landwirtschaftsgesellschaft) jury, five John Deere innovations have been awarded Silver Medals at Agritechnica 2011. This recognition adds to the long list of award winning solutions presented by John Deere in recent years at Europe’s largest agricultural machinery show.
New Machine Sync optimises crop harvesting logistics
John Deere Machine Sync is the latest addition to the company’s Intelligent Solutions portfolio and supports the implementation of the John Deere FarmSight strategy. Designed as a combine and tractor based logistics optimisation tool, Machine Sync enables machines to exchange data on-the-go by providing the tractor operator with appropriate information to improve the efficiency of the logistics chain.
On his tractor monitor, the operator can view a map which displays the position of harvesters and of other tractor/trailer units in the field, to enable a more targeted approach. Depending on the level of grain in the combine’s tank, Machine Sync sets priorities for the unloading process and indicates which harvester needs to be unloaded next. In turn, the combine operator can actively call a tractor and trailer to begin their approach for unloading. As a next step, an additional feature enables the tractor operator to accept the unloading request, which will automatically exclude other tractor/trailer units from approaching the same combine.
Furthermore, according to the ‘leader & follower’ principle, Machine Sync can allow the combine operator to take command of the tractor and grain trailer, once a predetermined distance from the combine is reached. When Machine Sync is activated, the combine operator begins to steer the tractor and grain trailer relative to the combine’s speed and travel direction. Since Machine Sync only requires an AutoTrac fully automatic steering system to be fitted to the tractor, the combine operator can also manually ‘guide’ the tractor alongside his machine.
Innovative John Deere HarvestLab sensor analyses crop constituents
John Deere Constituent Sensing is a software update designed for organic material constituent sensing, implemented on the John Deere HarvestLab near-infra red (NIR) spectrometer. The John Deere HarvestLab system has now been enhanced to sense additional silage quality parameters, such as protein, sugar, starch, fibre (ADF/NDF) and ash content, either on–the-go on John Deere self-propelled forage harvesters or as a portable stationary unit for feed nutritionists. This development is the result of the long standing relationship between John Deere and Zeiss, a leading expert in the manufacture of NIR spectrometers.
Since the release of HarvestLab, robust constituent sensing calibration curves have been developed for John Deere, thanks to DairyLab – John Deere’s partner and a worldwide expert in NIR silage calibration curves. Since the sensor can work with multiple calibration curves in parallel, John Deere HarvestLab can predict the content of a single constituent or several constituents simultaneously in a second, without additional measurement time. Furthermore, this enhancement allows the SPFH’s silage additive rate to be adjusted automatically according to the crop sugar content or HarvestLab’s dry matter readings. This results in higher silage quality and better control of feed costs.
Another key feature of John Deere’s constituent sensing is the fully integrated system of recording and documenting silage quality and yield data on the forage harvester’s GreenStar display. This helps the silage producer to manage his feed ration and additive calculations more efficiently.
John Deere Active Seat II
Compared to John Deere’s previous hydraulic seat suspension system, the newly designed Active Seat II represents an even more innovative suspension system which operates with electrical and electronic components.
This new system requires significantly less response time and helps to further reduce vertical seat oscillation by approximately 10 per cent, while reducing the required energy input by up to 90 per cent. Active Seat II therefore provides significantly better operator comfort, both on the road and in the field. Since Active Seat II works with electrical/electronic components only, it can also be installed on other machines that operate with a compatible electrical system. As an industry first, its predecessor was awarded a Gold Medal at Agritechnica 2001.
Potato Suite – a joint development by John Deere and Grimme
Following wider use of the ISOBUS standard on tractors and implements, John Deere and Grimme have been jointly awarded a Silver Medal for tractor/implement automation systems on potato planters and potato harvesters. Potato Suite helps to automate a number of tasks throughout the entire potato production process from planting to harvesting. In a breakthrough innovation, Auto Implement Detection provides automated transfer of the implement’s geometry to the tractor display for guidance and documentation purposes. The tractor/implement automation features include ongoing control of the hitch, pto speed, tractor speed, hydraulic flow of additional SCVs, automatic steering, the headland management system and the iSteer implement steering system.
In addition to easier and more time-saving set-up for documentation, the key benefits of Potato Suite are enhanced potato planting precision, product quality improvements, less operator fatigue, avoidance of operating errors, fuel savings, less soil stress and reduced equipment wear.
Innovative features on John Deere front loaders
John Deere’s latest H-Series front loaders will be available with two new features designed to help the operator perform repetitive tasks more accurately and consistently during long working days. These will be available for use with the new 6R and 7R Series tractors.
A newly developed return to position (RTP) feature enables the operator to set two pre-defined position settings for both the loader boom and attachment, to synchronise operations simultaneously.
As an alternative to conventional mechanical or hydraulic self-levelling, or as an additional option for non self-levelling loaders, the new electronic self-levelling (ESL) option features electro-hydraulically actuated self-levelling of front loader implements.
This intuitive solution greatly reduces operator fatigue while also maintaining a high quality level of loader work. Furthermore, it improves the operator’s visibility and enhances the precision of the parallel movement, while ensuring maximum productivity with a minimum need for corrective action. Settings are made via the loader joystick and the display terminal in the tractor cab.
Further innovations at Agritechnica
John Deere has added several other new tractor technologies to its long list of innovations for the 2012 season.
New DirectDrive transmission for 6R Series
With the newly designed 24-speed DirectDrive transmission, John Deere has introduced a completely new technology to the agricultural machinery industry and a further option to the new 6R Series tractor range. This double clutch technology is already established in the prestige car industry, and is now available in a tractor for the first time.
It has been designed to serve the needs of larger arable farms and contractors. The DirectDrive transmission combines the handling comfort of an infinitely variable shift transmission (IVT) with the power efficiency of a mechanical transmission, and has been designed for specific tasks and load conditions which require continuous power flow, such as ploughing and towing, pto work and road transport.
Key customer benefits of this new transmission are enhanced power efficiency and improved fuel efficiency, resulting in savings of up to 10g/kWh compared to an IVT transmission. Additionally, just like in Formula 1 racing cars, electromagnetic actuators enable fast changes between speeds and ranges under varying temperature conditions, to make this transmission even more productive.
The operator can choose between a manual mode to take command of forward and reverse speed changes via the control lever, and an automatic mode. In this mode, the three range DirectDrive transmission enables fast changes between eight speeds under full load, and also provides fully automatic changes between the A, B and C ranges.
Depending on the actual load, the Efficiency Manager function optimises the tractor’s efficiency by automatically matching the appropriate speed and engine rpm. As a result, the new DirectDrive transmission offers a cost-efficient alternative to existing IVTs.
Compared to the mechanical/hydraulic power split of an IVT, the DirectDrive transmission exclusively builds on a fully mechanical power flow. This results in a power efficiency improvement of approximately four per cent, without compromising operator comfort and productivity.
The straightforward transmission design also provides a choice of driving strategies to match all tasks, including transport work at a maximum speed of 50kph with a significantly reduced engine rpm (in Eco mode). The new John Deere DirectDrive transmission will be optionally available on all six-cylinder 6R Series tractors from 140 to 210hp, from summer 2012.
New 6210RE tractor with ‘R-evolutionary’ electric technology
Alongside the 6R Series tractors, John Deere is offering the newly designed 6210RE model, which will be available from May 2012.
The previous 7430E and 7530E Premium tractors featured a 20kW crankshaft generator. This produced power on demand to run an electrically driven cooling fan and various other engine components, as well as providing 5kW of electric power through two sockets when the tractor was stationary.
With the brand new 6210RE, an additional evolution has been achieved. Until now, tractor driven implements have been operated by the pto or using stepless hydraulic power. John Deere’s electric solution now combines the benefits of both, delivering power on the move to run electrically driven motors on implements, for better efficiency and more accuracy.
When operating a fertiliser spreader for example, the farmer will be able to adjust the application rate and the spreader discs will react within milliseconds, which means savings in fuel as well as inputs. In addition, pto drivelines may no longer be required – just two connectors to plug in and start the implement.
Newly designed front weight contour
A newly designed contour for the front weights on John Deere tractors helps to facilitate the mounting of weights to the lower links of the tractor front hitch, for an easier and smoother hook up. This helps to avoid the time and fuel consuming alignment of John Deere Category 3N 1500 and 1800kg weights with the tractor, and prevents mishaps when hooking up the weights. After the coupling process, the driver only leaves the tractor to connect the tractor’s upper link to the front hitch.