Farming for the Future

Precision Farming

ISARIA is the next generation of Precision Farming combining real time crop sensing and yield mapping.




The Solution


Developed by the Fritzmeier Group in Germany, international manufacturers of high-tech solutions, this crop sensor tool is being evaluated, across the UK, on wheat, barley and rape crops.


This has been completed as part of a consortium project funded by Innovate UK, with CF Fertilisers, ADAS, Syngenta, Hill Court Farm Research, Precision Crop Nutrition, Patchwork and Precision Agriculture Consultant, Chris Harry Thomas.


CF is the lead organisation in assessing ISARIA performance across these trials.


Precision Farming with ISARIA


Ref: Chris Harry Thomas, Precision Agriculture Consultant.




Real time crop measurement combined with variable field history 


Every area of each field on your farm will have different crop nutrient needs, and optimising application rates is vital – both for cost-efficiency and to ensure you reach the required quality specifications.


While precision farming is increasing in popularity, one of the keys to its success relies on an ability to incorporate real time measurements with field history.


Nitrogen Application Techniques


 Alternative methods available 

 ISARIA: The next generation

Combines the benefits of yield potential maps and real time sensing to make precision N applications. 
 Real time crop sensing Reflectivity of crop biomass determines Nitrogen requirement in real time inspective of any previous N applications. 
 Flat rate application No account of field/ crop variation all field gets fixed N rate. 




How ISARIA works


Targeted crop nutrition system, works best when it’s based on precise information.





For example:




  • How should the yield potential be optimised?
  • How much fertiliser should be applied across field areas?
  • How do I apply different rates to different areas site specifically to maximise financial returns?




The ISARIA crop sensor is a system that measures crop Nitrogen uptake and optimises the application rates of Nitrogen fertiliser across cereals and OSR. This results in improved crop yields and grain quality, due to the reduced in-field variation.




How to use ISARIA




The ISARIA crop sensor can be used on any tractor thanks to its lightweight aluminium frame. It can be fitted on to the front hydraulics and/or weight carrying system of any tractor, in a matter of minutes. The ‘in cab’ terminal connects via a serial/RS232 interface to most spreader/sprayer controllers. All that is required is a connection to a 12 volt supply. Communication between sensor and the terminal is via Bluetooth.


Technical Features


ISARIA is a flexible system that is easy to use:


  • It can be used whatever the light level
  • Completes up to 2,000 measurements per second
  • The sensor's proximity to the crop, (around 100cm) results in highly accurate measurements




The N status of the crop is recorded after each application and can be viewed in commercially available farm desk software.


  • No calibration when the absolute model is used
  • It's easy to install and flexible
  • Simple to operate and with wireless Bluetooth data transfer
  • The sensor measures crop Nitrogen uptake and ground cover.




ISARIA: Validation results




Based on years of trial data gathered by Munich’s Centre of Life and Food Sciences in Weihenstephan.




ISARIA has been shown to achieve significantly better and more accurate results compared to flat rate applications. Growth is recorded at a site specific level, identifying the productive capability of crops.




In 2015, farmers across the UK are busy carrying out validation trials, on wheat, barley and oilseed rape crops.




Doug McCowan from Harnage Estates, Telford, Shropshire, is using ISARIA and says he’s keen to record the results. His biggest crop by area is wheat, at 200ha grown, 


ISARIA monitor


where 50% is aimed at the premium milling market. He’s very aware of the importance of Nitrogen quality and application rate as he’s going for higher protein levels.




  • Flexible system allows farmers to gather crop data throughout the season.
  • Operator-friendly system on a Windows based tablet.







 View the project outline and the 2015 results



ISARIA Sensor Head





We were approached by CF Fertilisers to host a wheat validation trial, to test the performance of the ISARIA sensor.  As we’re already interested in variable rate N, we were keen to participate. Across the farm we’ve been using variable N technology successfully – so I’m really interested to see whether this system is an improvement on our current one.




Doug McCowan- Harnage Estates




ISARIA: The next generation

Combines the benefits of yield potential maps and real time sensing to make precision N applications
Real time crop sensing Reflectivity of crop biomass determines Nitrogen requirement in real time irrespective of any previous field performance history. 
Real time crop sensing No account of field/ crop variation, all fields get fixed N rate




ISARIA Trials in the UK


 ISARIA yield potenital maps






ISARIA Model Options




ISARIA Model Options




The difference between the systems








The difference between ISARIA and other precision Nitrogen systems








To take this information away with you download the leaflet.




For free advice and more information about this service please call our Crop Nutrition team on +44 (0)151 357 5758 or fill in the form below.