Enabling sustainable oenological practices through a robotic UAS solution for precision viticulture

Oenobotics services will be delivered to customers, such as vineyard farmers or associations, via a hardware-as-a-service business model, supporting them to avoid significant initial investment costs. The Oenobotics hardware and software will also be available to drone companies and interested farmers as an off-the-shelf product. The solution addresses the needs of wine-producing vineyards located in remote sloppy elevated locations that are hard to reach with any machinery.

In particular, the Oenobotics project deploys a droned platform that will provide viticulture farmers the following innovative and affordable precision viticulture services:

  1. Vine disease diagnostics,
  2. Vine water-stress diagnostics, 
  3. Precise spot-spraying for treatment of downy mildew, powdery mildew and grey mould/botrytis;
  4. A wireless and automated drone charging dock.
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Oenobotics services will be delivered to customers, such as vineyard farmers or associations, via a hardware-as-a-service business model, supporting them to avoid significant initial investment costs. The Oenobotics hardware and software will also be available to drone companies and interested farmers as an off-the-shelf product. 

Future Needs will coordinate the Minimum Viable Product definition and the service design, as well as  the trials, the user-validation and the fine-tuning of the system. Initially, all the services and the system technical requirements will be described and mockups of the final product and services will be drawn. When the system is built test flights over Kontogiannis Family vineyards with known health state will take place aiming to diagnose correctly plant health state (disease and water-stress diagnosis), spray precisely a liquid (water or a specific biological mix approved by the user) in selected areas and automatically return to and land on the docking station to recharge.

These Oenobotics services will assist vineyard owners in avoiding health impacts of chemicals and heat on vineyard workers, to react much faster to extreme weather changes caused by climate change, and to be more sustainable and profitable by producing yield of better quality, using less pesticides (in case of conventional farming) and producing less CO2 emissions (in case of organic farming). Project results will be demonstrated in an organic vineyard in Greece.

Future Needs is the leader of all the market related activities of the undertaking that include IPR Management and GDPR,  the creation of the product brand and associated promotional material, the organisation of two promotional events in collaboration with DIHs, a marketing campaign for early adoption and ecosystem building and finally a business and financial plan and a preparation for the market entry, to ensure the financial sustainability of the undertaking. An expansion strategy will be established in order to define the means for developing scalable user-centred services and organizational plans (structure, processes) will be created for the new venture that will drive the Oenobotics solution into the market.

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