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Japanese robot can pick strawberries based on color

December 3, 2010 |  2:17 pm

The Beatles would have a field day with this one: A Japanese robot can harvest ripe strawberries.

The bot, created by the country’s Agricultural and Food Research Organization, uses a pair of cameras to figure out the fruit’s position and judge its color. Only berries that meet an 80% redness standard are selected.

Then the robot very carefully cuts the strawberry off the stem at the rate of one berry every nine seconds. That’s 300 hours of harvesting for 1,000 square meters of strawberries, or just 60% of the 500 hours it takes human pickers on average.

Perhaps the machine will eventually compete against similar strawberry-pickers from Robotic Harvesting and Agrobot. It’s already in field testing and may be tweaked for other crops, such as tomatoes, according to DigInfo TV.

How’s that for intelligent farming? RELATED:

Fleet of robots designed to clean up oil

Robot trained to care for the elderly at University of Connecticut

-- Tiffany Hsu

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