Solutions to automate operational monitoring activities in agro-forestry tasks
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An innovative approach for automating operational monitoring activities in agri-forestry tasks is here described and discussed. This approach can be considered as a solution for Precision Agriculture (PA) and Precision Forestry (PF) applications and can be employed as an ICT tool for the management aims for a variety of agri-environmental companies. Aim of the proposed concept 21 is to develop a system, composed by both hardware and software units. All the collected raw data are then sent or uploaded to a relational database, where they are stored (historical farm memory) and managed by the so called Operational Inference Engine (OIE): a set of procedures able to translate raw data into operational information to be used in decision making processes. All the procedures will be carried out automatically, in order to ensure an objective and automatic compilation of the field activity register or for documentation/reporting. In the present paper is described the application of the automatic operational monitoring at three different operations: monitoring of agricultural operations (apple harvesting) and monitoring of forestry logging activities (yarding operations and motor manual felling). The reliability of the entire system was validated through the comparison with a manual survey of the main operative information elaborated by the OIE.The obtained results highlighted a good capability of the OIE to assess correctly the wanted operative parameters. Generally, we obtained correlation values higher then 0,80. Only in few cases the R2 was lower, probably due to a no corrected implementation of the algorithm used for the raw data interpretation. Therefore, further recalibration of the algorithm will be planned in order to increase the OIE’s interpretation. Thus, thanks to this application, the entrepreneur will have automatically updated all the operative information in a dedicated database system. All the obtained documents can then be used for certification and traceability processes if required by the procedural guideline, as well as to satisfy any other management task, including the estimation of the actual operative costs (and impacts) of the farm.