AgQuip is less than a week away and this year the University of New England’s focus is on interactive and connective ideas.
SMART Farm data will be streamed directly into their site using the NBN Sky Muster satellite.
Students will also have the chance to compare their energy output to livestock in a race on exercise bikes.
The display is a mix of sports science and agriculture and SMART Farm extension officer Dougal Eliott says there are a lot of similarities between the two.
“The processes going on within humans and within livestock are very similar so I think there is a lot that can be learned from each other,” he said.
“At Ag-Quip, students will race on exercise bikes and giving us the opportunity to talk about energy expenditure in cattle and sheep, and how this contributes to performance in term of meat gain.”
“We then tie it back into precision agriculture through the use of technologies such as GPS systems that have the potential to monitor energy expenditures of animals.”
The interactive display is part of a bigger outreach program the university begins in the coming weeks.
UNE will visit schools across the region seeking deeper engagement with students and the community.
“It’s looking at delivering interactive activities to students from kindergarten to year 10, Mr Eliott said.
“We are traveling right across the New England, North West, and North Coast.
“We have received funding that is based around giving students in less fortunate areas the opportunity to engage with a tertiary institution.
“There is a real push from the university to engage with the community.
“And we are in a really rich agricultural area so it’s nice to be able to push agricultural things.”
Mr Eliott said one of the most important things they were looking at with all the new technologies was dependability.
“None of this technology has any value to farmers if it’s not reliable,” he said.
“So dependability is a big focus for us.”
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