Yamaha Motor’s New Agriculture Drone Enters into A Market in Which Much Is Spoken, But Little Is Known

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4Q 2017 | IN-4794


Some Skepticism Required


Yamaha Motors recently announced the impending introduction of the YMR-01, an experimental multirotor UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) designed to spray agrochemicals. Yamaha already provides such a service with unmanned helicopters, and the announcement suggests a confidence in the future of commercial drone applications in agriculture.

The development of a multirotor system for field spraying is itself strange. Yamaha already provides such services with two unmanned helicopters; the Fazer and the R-Max. As emphasized in a recent ABI Insight Is There a Real Alternative to Multirotors in the Commercial Drone Market? Probably Not., helicopters have many advantages on multirotors like the YMR-01. They have greater endurance and efficiency, and can therefore cover a wider area in one flight. The YMR-01is advertised as being able to spray 2.47 acres per flight. In farming terms, this is a minuscule range, with the average American farm consisting of 442 acres in 2016, according to the US Dep…

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