The Ctrl2GO's automated system has become the first comprehensive solution in Russia in the fight against the hogweed. The system includes a set of digital and technological solutions: satellites, unmanned aerial vehicles and ground-based sensor systems for monitoring territories, data analysis using artificial intelligence and machine learning. The toolbox is also expanded with a ground-based spraying robot that can handle the territories infected with Sosnowski hogweed which are inaccessible to flying drones.
"We continue to systematically develop and improve the system efficiency. Ground drones were added to the aerial vehicle fleet. It is impossible to fly over many areas of Moscow Region, about 40% of the region's territory includes some critical infrastructure facilities, power lines, and airport zones. In such cases, we will use the ground vehicles," said Nikolay Durmanov, Director of the Ctrl2GO Department of Innovative Technologies in the Agro-Industrial Complex. "They similarly receive the route tracks based on the information from reconnaissance drones, satellites, and highly efficiently treat hogweed thickets directly from the ground."
A land drone is capable of taking on board up to 200 liters of a herbicide mixture, move over rough terrain, and treat the area in different modes depending on the situation. The machine can move both with the help of a gasoline engine and batteries.
In the summer of 2019, the Ctrl2GO automated system for fighting hogweed was tested in Moscow Region; these tests confirmed the high efficiency, the tools' safety regarding the environmental situation and the long-term effect of the infected fields' treatment. The use of selective-action herbicides makes it possible to preserve most of the vegetation and reduce the environmental burden by way of specifically destroying malicious weeds.
Currently, Sosnowski hogweed, which is dangerous to humans, is spread in Russia over an area of more than one million hectares. If the problem is not solved, then in 10 years more than 35% of the land in the country's natural agroecosystems will be infected by the weed.