ASuBot is an acronym for Aarhus and Southern Denmark University Robot, a joint project between the department of engineering at Aarhus University and the faculty of engineering at the University of Southern Denmark.
ASuBot has been utilized in a research project focusing on weeding in organic orchards. Today this is a quite tedious process as herbicides are not allowed and weeding are therefore typically carried out using either a mechanical process or weed burning. Weed at a closer distance than half a meter to the fruit trees compete about the nutrients, therefore the amount of weed within that distance needs to be kept at a very low level. Under normal circumstances weeding has to take place every week.
In the research project we focused on organic weeding using a gass burner and an autonomous garden tractor. The tractor navigates autonomously through the entire orchard ensuring that the gas burners are not damaging the trees. Navigation is accomplished without a GNSS because of problems with the trees shading the GNSS antenna sometimes. Since RTK-GNSS receivers are still quite expensive this also lowers the price of the robot.
ASuBot is based upon a Massey Fergusson 38-15 garden tractor retrofitted with a Topcon AES-25 steering system.