Automated Trellising
Team info
Brigitte de Graaf
Sachin Umans
Jingru Feng
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Automated Trellising

The challenge

Currently in large-scale industrial tomato greenhouses, the plants are supported by wires. Adjusting this trellis system to account for the growth of the plants is a labour intensive process. The supporting wires need to be lifted and shifted on a weekly basis. This takes up to ...% of manual labour in the greenhouse. Additionally, the process puts a physical strain on the workers body and is prone to error. Besides the growing of tomatoes, this challenge also presents itself for other varieties that need trellising, such as cucumbers.

The solution

We propose an automated trellising system that can reduce the manual labour spent on trellising by ... (80?) %. A specialized robotic arm is designed to perform the trellising task. The robotic arm is mounted on currently available automatic carts that use the existing infrastructure in the greenhouse to get around and move in between rows of plants. Therefore, one arm can autonomously operate on multiple rows of plants, providing a great scalability of the product. With little alterations to the greenhouse, a big decrease in manual labour!


Automation of the trellising job in large-scale industrial tomato greenhouses.

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