Startup uses drones to help farmers harvest data

A startup that employs drones to gather soil and plant conditions by flying over acres of farmland is ready for takeoff, according to David Nicklaus in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Ali Ahmadi, who completed his Executive MBA at Olin last year, is an accomplished entrepreneur and Chief Operating Officer of the company, Aerial Agriculture. And, Ahmadi knows drones: He has served in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Department of Defense as a drone flight operator and logistics project manager.

From The St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

“In the 21st-century version of a land rush, more than 600 companies have received permission to fly drones over farm fields and collect agricultural data.

Only one of them is headed by a 27-year-old experimental physicist and headquartered in an old warehouse building in downtown St. Louis. Harrison Knoll, the founder and chief executive of Aerial Agriculture, thinks his company stands out in other ways, too.

For starters, there’s the artificial intelligence system his team has built. It will take the data gathered by the drones and turn it into actionable advice for farmers, telling them which part of a field needs more nitrogen and which plants are showing signs of a pest infestation.”

Read full story.

Photo courtesy of  Ali Ahmadi

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