Japan to open robot farm in tsunami disaster zone
2012-01-12 0:00

From: telegraph.co.uk



A futuristic farm with robot operators is to open in Japan on land swamped by the March 11 tsunami as part of an experimental government project.

The project, masterminded by the Ministry of Agriculture, will involve unmanned tractors working the fields of the farm on a disaster zone site spanning 600 acres.
Robots will then box produce grown on the farm, including rice, wheat, soybeans, fruit and vegetables as part of the “Dream Project” scheme, according to the Nikkei.

The growth of crops will also be boosted by recycled carbon dioxide generated by the operation of the machinery in a bid to reduce reliance on chemical fertilisers.

An expanse of farmland in Miyagi prefecture, northeast Japan, which was flooded in last year’s tsunami, has been earmarked by the government for the project.

On-site research is expected to begin later this year, with a forecast government investment of £33 million (four billion yen) over the next six years, according to ministry officials.

Miyagi was one of Japan’s three worst hit prefectures in the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, which left more than 19,000 dead or missing and triggered the world’s worst nuclear crisis in decades.

Farming was hit particularly hard by the disaster, with tsunami water leaving soil laden with salt and oil deposits, as well as radiation contamination as a result of the leaking Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

More than 59,000 acres of once fertile farmland were damaged as a result of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear fallout, with the agricultural industry still struggling to recover.

The government is hoping to bolster the new robot farm project by inviting leading Japanese technology companies, including Panasonic, Fujitsu and Hitachi, to become involved.

"We hope the project will help not only support farmers in the disaster-hit regions but also revive the entire nation’s agriculture," said a spokesman for the agriculture ministry.

Source: telegraph.co.uk



Related Articles


Latest News from our Front Page

Galaxy Poll: 86 per cent of Australians want childhood vaccination to be compulsory?
2015-04-17 23:33
Australians want Prime Minister Tony Abbott to make childhood vaccination compulsory and close loopholes that allow vaccine refusers to put all children at risk. An exclusive national Galaxy poll commissioned by The Sunday Telegraph has revealed overwhelming support to ensure every child is vaccinated. The highest support for compulsory jabs is in South Australia, where 90 per cent support the call. The poll ...
Eye in the sky: Local police now using drones to spy on citizens
2015-04-17 22:09
The Harris County Precinct 1 Constable's Office is doing something that no other agency in Harris County is believed to have done yet: Use drones to help fight crime. It's an eye in the sky for law enforcement, without giving up the element of surprise. "It could absolutely save lives," says Constable Alan Rosen. Rosen says the agency's two new $1,200 drones, which ...
New Zealander of the Year: refuse vaccines, lose money
2015-04-17 22:47
Following in the footsteps of Australia, 2014 New Zealander of the Year, Dr. Lance O’Sullivan, wants to punish people who don’t get vaccinated. The New Zealand Herald (4/15) reports: “A leading New Zealand doctor has called on the Government to follow Australia’s example to cut child welfare payments to families who do not vaccinate their children, saying the policy would help protect ...
Iris Scanner Identifies a Person 40 Feet Away
2015-04-17 22:20
Police traffic stops are in the news again, tragically, sparking a new round of discussion on whether and how to outfit police with cameras and other technology. For several years now, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University’s CyLab Biometrics Center have been testing an iris recognition system that can be used to identify subjects at a range of up to 40 feet. Like ...
Yes, You Can Catch Insanity
2015-04-17 22:29
One day in March 2010, Isak McCune started clearing his throat with a forceful, violent sound. The New Hampshire toddler was 3, with a Beatles mop of blonde hair and a cuddly, loving personality. His parents had no idea where the guttural tic came from. They figured it was springtime allergies. Soon after, Isak began to scream as if in pain ...
More News »