Automatic Tractor Guidance with Computer Vision 871639
Image processing techniques were investigated for developing a guidance signal for a tractor operating on agricultural row crops. The guidance signal was computed from thresholded images segmented by a Bayes classifier. The distribution of crop canopy and soil background pixels in an image was approximated with a bimodal Gaussian distribution function. The parameters of the distribution were estimated by regression to systematically subsampled images. Run-length encoding was used to locate center points of row crop canopy blobs in the thresholded images. A heuristic line detection algorithm was used to determine the parameters defining crop row location on the image plane. Row parameters were used to compute a tractor guidance signal. Results are presented on the performance of the individual components of the algorithm.