New Innovations Could Give Growers Bigger Bottom Lines in 2007

With the 2006 growing season in the past and the 2007 harvest almost a year away, cotton farmers wind down from another production cycle. As they think about this year’s crop, they consider what could have been done differently, perhaps should have been done differently, to reach their agronomic goals. Many cotton growers will consider using different seed varieties next year, while others consider newer, cutting-edge inputs and crop protection combinations.

But as farmers analyze their past growing strategy and weigh the possibility of changes in the next year, the option of investing in new farming equipment is a choice that could mean big dividends. With the next season on the horizon, cotton growers look for “the next big thing” to improve their planting, management and harvest systems in future years.

The Next Big Thing

Every so often a company comes out with a product that they claim challenges the status quo. Only the future will prove if they are right or wrong, but Case IH claims that is precisely what they have done with the introduction of their new Module Express 625 picker. The first commercial cotton picker with the ability to build modules while harvesting, the Module Express 625 works within current production systems by building 8-foot-long by 8-foot-wide “half” modules that are 16-feet long. By combining picking and module-building into the same process, Case IH believes they will save cotton farmers time and money in the long run.

“Case IH cotton pickers already can pick more cotton with our two-sided picking system, and we want to make customers even more productive by streamlining the module building process,” said Trent Haggard, director of Case IH global marketing for the cotton industry. “It has the power to handle picking in the toughest conditions, the productivity of our proven two-sided picking design, monitors providing total systems overviews from spindles to module builder, and matched tank capacities to handle long 14-hour harvest days.”

Because of its “one man, one machine” cotton harvest and module-building capabilities, Case IH believes harvest costs will be dramatically reduced. While that should be good news to farmers, the shorter module length could mean good news for gins. According to Haggard, the modules are purposely sized to maximize gin-feeding rates without adding any contamination. “In the past 30 years we’ve looked at modules of various shapes and sizes, similar to large hay bales, but they required changes in the handling and ginning infrastructure. These don’t,” Haggard said. “During the most recent 6 years of testing, we’ve successfully run thousands of Case IH modules through gins across the Cotton Belt, from North Carolina through California, and they’ve been incredibly well-received.”

Precisely Speaking

While big equipment manufacturers look for ways to improve their tractors and pickers, Precision Ag companies continue to develop new products to improve the efficiency of those primary machines.

•Trimble has introduced its new AgGPS Implement Steering system for keeping implements pulled by tractors using the Trimble RTK Autopilot automated steering systems on the same repeatable path, even on extremely sloped fields.
The system includes its own implement-mounted GPS receiver and T3 roll-compensated control system. A single display in the tractor communicates desired path information to the implement, instantly adjusting the steerable coulters. This information instructs the implement to directly follow in the path of the tractor.
“By solving the problem of side draft, the new AgGPS Implement Steering system allows growers with RTK-corrected AgGPS Autopilot systems to steer their implements with the same repeatable accuracy as their tractors. This includes operations with high-value crops on level ground or crops planted on slopes,” said Erik Arvesen, general manager, Trimble Agriculture Division.

• In GPS technology, Raven has introduced a new line of GPS receivers that combine their designs with industry-leading technology for what they call “one of the most powerful and accurate receiver lines on the market.” The Phoenix 200 combines Raven receiver technology with the latest Hemisphere GPS Crescent OEM engine. The Phoenix 200 presents an economical, high-performance sub-meter receiver capable of utilizing two differential correction solutions. With an optional upgrade to e-Dif extended differential technology, the Phoenix 200 is capable of achieving GPS accuracies of a few feet without the need for a differential signal broadcast.

Getting In On the Hunt

John Deere continues to test a similar product and is in the development and field-testing phase of its own on-board module-building picker. According to the company, the on-board module builder produces poly-wrapped round modules that are consistent in size and density and are designed to help protect overall cotton quality.

John Deere continues to test several of these new proto-types with producers and ginners across the Cotton Belt. With input from university scholars and industry experts, the company is working to ensure that this new harvest solution meets the reliability and performance needs of the cotton industry.

In addition to testing their new module-building picker, John Deere continues to promote its 15-inch cotton system. John Deere PRO-12 VRS (Variable Row System) cotton picker heads give farmers the ability to pick 15-inch cotton on solid rows, but the PRO-12 VRS Cotton Picker Row Unit picker head also allows farmers to harvest between 15- to 40-inch rows, giving producers other options like “skip 15” cotton which consists of 2 rows that are 15 inches apart with a 25-inch gap between those rows. The company said narrow row cotton is becoming more and more popular, and Jeff Barnes, John Deere’s Crop System Specialist, estimates that in the area around Memphis, TN, alone there were about 35,000 acres of 15-inch cotton grown in 2006.

“The picking heads fit new John Deere 9970 and 9986 Cotton Pickers, and also retro-fit 9970, 9976 and 9986 picker models built since 1997,” said Mike Miller, product planner, John Deere Des Moines Works. “The versatile row units can harvest 15- to 40-inch cotton with little changeover time required.

“The PRO-12 VRS units offer narrow-row cotton producers high-quality, efficient harvesting as well as the field-proven features of the other PRO Series headers,” Miller said.

Revving the Engine

Case IH and John Deere are not the only “big iron” companies providing farmers with newer and better options for crop production. AGCO Corporation has incorporated a new engine design in its RT Series Generation A tractors that will improve overall performance. The company believes the new engine design “boosts power, saves fuel and meets or exceeds latest EPA Tier III emission standards.”

The 6.6L AGCO Engines are wastegate turbocharged, 24-valve powerplants, which incorporate advanced, high pressure common rail injection from BOSCH, the market leader in fuel injection technology. Constant injection pressures of up to 24,000 psi allow for precision electronic control over the entire fuel system. The 4-valve-per-cylinder head not only improves gas flow but also allows redesigned high-flow injectors to be centrally positioned over the combustion chamber creating a more even fuel injection and an improved, more efficient combustion.

Leave a Reply

Equipment Stories

Cotton Production

UAVs Could Be Game Changers for Growers and Consultants

June 2, 2014

There’s an increasing buzz in the air as the number of potential commercial uses for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles continues to grow.

Crop Inputs

Increase Irrigation Efficiency – and Profit – with LEPA System

August 7, 2014

A recent AgriLife Research study showed that growers who were not utilizing LEPA sprinkler systems in their irrigation program could be losing up to $100 per acre in yield.

Cotton Production

John Deere Updates Round Module Building Cotton Picker for 2015

August 7, 2014

For 2015, John Deere has updated its on-board round module building CP690 (previously known as 7760) Cotton Picker with increased power, performance and uptime.

Crop Inputs

New Cotton Webcasts Focus on Irrigation and Foliar Disease Management

July 18, 2014

Two new webcasts focusing on crop protection and irrigation management have been added to the Focus on Cotton online webcast resource, developed by Cotton Incorporated and the Plant Management Network.

Cotton Production

Get the Buzz on UAVs at Delta AgTech Symposium July 7-8

May 15, 2014

If you want to know how UAVs could impact your farming operation or business, check out the Delta AgTech Symposium: Advancing UAVs in Agriculture July 7-8 in Memphis, TN.

Cotton Production

New Broadcast Spray-Hoods Help Reduce Drift, Improve Coverage

March 28, 2014

A new line of broadcast spray-hoods will offer growers greater drift control while also improving the spray coverage and efficacy of the chemicals being applied.

Cotton Production

Protect Your Profits: Revolutionary Harvesters Could Save You Money

January 8, 2014

As 2014 begins, it’s clear that cotton growers will be looking for cost-cutting efficiencies to help them remain productive and profitable, regardless of acreage and/or market prices. Our Cotton Grower editors recently outlined five topics to help growers protect their

Around The Gin

Product News

Platform Specialty Products to Acquire Arysta LifeScience as Component for New Company

October 21, 2014

Platform Specialty Products has reached a definitive agreement to acquire Arysta LifeScience for approximately $3.51 billion.

Product News

PhytoGen Partners with Farmers to Aid Local Charities

October 17, 2014

Since becoming a partner in the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year program three years ago, PhytoGen has made donations to 25 charities on behalf of state farmers of the year.

Product News

Enlist Duo Herbicide Approved; Enlist Weed Control System Now Cleared for Use

October 16, 2014

The Enlist Weed Control System from Dow AgroSciences has been approved for field use in corn and soybeans in 2015 by federal regulatory authorities, with introduction in cotton still scheduled for 2016.

News

Registration for 2015 Beltwide Cotton Conferences Opens as Program Takes Shape

October 3, 2014

Registration now is open for the 2015 Beltwide Cotton Conferences, set for January 5-7 at the Marriott Rivercenter in San Antonio, TX.

Product News

October 10 Deadline for Public Comments on Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System Plants

September 25, 2014

The public comment period on the draft environmental impact statement for cotton and soybean plants for Monsanto’s Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System will remain open through October 10.

Cotton Production

New Cotton Webcasts Focus on Using Yield Monitor Data for Precision Planning

September 10, 2014

Two new webcasts to help growers successfully capture and use data from yield monitors have been added to the Focus on Cotton online webcast resource, developed by Cotton Incorporated and the Plant Management Network.

Marketing

First Class Selected for Cotton Research and Promotion Program Hall of Fame

September 8, 2014

Five honorees have been elected to the first class of Cotton Incorporated’s newly-established Cotton Research and Promotion Program Hall of Fame.

Crop Inputs

FMC to Acquire Cheminova

September 8, 2014

Auriga Industries has agreed to sell its wholly-owned subsidiary Cheminova to FMC Corporation.

Latest News

Crop Inputs

Increase Irrigation Efficiency – and Profit – with LEPA System

August 7, 2014

A recent AgriLife Research study showed that growers who were not utilizing LEPA sprinkler systems in their irrigation program could be losing up to $100 per acre in yield.

Crop Inputs

New Cotton Webcasts Focus on Irrigation and Foliar Disease Management

July 18, 2014

Two new webcasts focusing on crop protection and irrigation management have been added to the Focus on Cotton online webcast resource, developed by Cotton Incorporated and the Plant Management Network.

Cotton Production

UAVs Could Be Game Changers for Growers and Consultants

June 2, 2014

There’s an increasing buzz in the air as the number of potential commercial uses for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles continues to grow.

Cotton Production

Get the Buzz on UAVs at Delta AgTech Symposium July 7-8

May 15, 2014

If you want to know how UAVs could impact your farming operation or business, check out the Delta AgTech Symposium: Advancing UAVs in Agriculture July 7-8 in Memphis, TN.

Cotton Production

John Deere Introduces New Module-Building CS690 Cotton Stripper

April 7, 2014

Innovative design speeds harvest, reduces labor and downtime, protects yields and increases operator comfort.

Cotton Production

New Broadcast Spray-Hoods Help Reduce Drift, Improve Coverage

March 28, 2014

A new line of broadcast spray-hoods will offer growers greater drift control while also improving the spray coverage and efficacy of the chemicals being applied.

Cotton Production

Protect Your Profits: Revolutionary Harvesters Could Save You Money

January 8, 2014

As 2014 begins, it’s clear that cotton growers will be looking for cost-cutting efficiencies to help them remain productive and profitable, regardless of acreage and/or market prices. Our Cotton Grower editors recently outlined five topics to help growers protect their

Cotton Production

Protect Your Profits: Save Money and Time with Remote Management Irrigation

January 3, 2014

As 2014 begins, it’s clear that cotton growers will be looking for cost-cutting efficiencies to help them remain productive and profitable, regardless of acreage and/or market prices. Our Cotton Grower editors recently outlined five topics to help growers protect their

Crop Inputs

AGCO Launches New Customer Support Service

January 2, 2014

AGCO has established the Fuse Contact Center, a new customer support resource to assist customers with setup, calibration and operation of AGCO precision agriculture and machine communication technology products. In North America, customers can reach the Fuse Contact Center by

Cotton Production

Valley Irrigation Offers New Cable Theft Deterrent Product

December 30, 2013

Valley Irrigation is adding the innovative Proof Positive Span Cable to its line of cable theft deterrent products. Copper theft is a global epidemic, and agricultural irrigation equipment is particularly vulnerable to copper theft. Thieves often grab long spans of

Cotton Production

Handle Round Modules With Care

September 6, 2013

On-board module builders have been a boon to cotton producers in terms of time, cost savings and efficiency. And as much as the equipment has impacted harvest time in the field, its quick adoption by growers has also led to

Cotton Production

Growers Struggle with Resale of Traditional Cotton Pickers

July 15, 2013

As far as roadside scenery goes, old farm equipment isn’t the most pleasant sight. . But in recent years, traditional four- and six-row cotton pickers featuring “For Sale” signs have begun to spring up along roadsides throughout the Cotton Belt. Cotton producers

Equipment

The Evolution of the U.S. Ginning Industry

July 1, 2013

If Eli Whitney could walk into a modern cotton gin, he might have a hard time recognizing his contribution to the industry. But he would probably also be fascinated with its evolution, speed and efficiency. Much like the production side

Equipment

New Products Minimize Energy and Water Consumption

November 28, 2012

Given all of the uncertainty mills have to deal with on a daily basis – such as the price of their raw materials on one end of the chain and changing consumer preferences on the other – any aspects of

Equipment

New Holland Becomes Official Ag Equipment of NASCAR

September 18, 2012

In a joint announcement at the NASCAR Fuel for Business Council meeting in Chicago, New Holland became the Official Agricultural Equipment of NASCAR. New Holland, the latest NASCAR Official Partner, has served the needs of farmers and ranchers across North