- Väderstad, presents a new generation of the cultivators Väderstad TopDown and Opus for the field season of 2024
In addition to an updated design, this means the introduction of the iPad-based control system Väderstad E-Control, as well as the possibility to apply prescription map tillage via ISOBUS Task Control.
From model year 2024, the combination cultivator TopDown 400-700 and heavy cultivator Opus 400-700 can be equipped with gateway, sensors and updated electronics. This opens the possibility to gain full control of the machine via the iPad-based control system Väderstad E-Control, as well as to operate the machine via the tractor ISOBUS terminal.
We have seen a demand from farmers to optimize the tillage operation even further. By being able to adjust the machine setting to the conditions on the field, it is possible to optimize the agronomy and working results.
The introduction of E-Services to TopDown and Opus is the key to this, says Wolfram Hastolz, Director Tillage Product Management, at Väderstad. The introduction of E-Services on TopDown and Opus makes the machines able to use prescription maps, to control the machine setting automatically on the go using a field map.
This means that the farmer, before going to the field, can program how the individual working elements – discs, tines, levellers and packer – should behave at specific spots on the field based on for example soil type, or field characteristics. In the tractor, this prescription map is inserted to the tractor ISOBUS terminal, which then will connect to the Väderstad E-Control system to take control of the machine.
The next step after variable rate application of seed and fertiliser is to apply the same thinking to tillage. Here savings wait to be unleashed using the rule “as much as necessary, as little as possible”. Some of the benefits come as diesel savings and improved soil health, others by the possibility to increase the working speed as well as reducing the wear. In addition, this enables an autonomous farming future, says Wolfram Hastolz.
Using the iPad-based control system Väderstad E-Control, the operator will also be able to gain full control of the machine directly from the tractor cab. With a touch of a button, the driver can set the individual working depth or intensity of the discs, tines, levellers, or packer on the go. To assist the field work, four pre-set buttons can be used to store different machine configurations.
The control system is designed to support the driver to optimize the tillage operation, while also increasing the user experience. With the pre-set buttons the farmer can store his own most common machine configurations. For example, using pre-set 1 for standard field work, pre-set 2 for tramlines, preset 3 for tough areas, and so on. When one working zone is changed, the others will compensate automatically to keep their individual selected depth, says Wolfram Hastolz. With the notion that field work can be hectic, and unexpected situations may occur at times. As a backup, the TopDown and Opus is able to be switched to manual setting and traditional control if for example the tractor needs to be quickly changed unexpectedly.
Väderstad TopDown 400-700 and Opus 400-700 can be ordered with E-Services as an option starting from October 2023. The machines will premiere at the international tradeshow Agritechnica in November 2023, and serial production will start in the beginning of 2024.