Within the Agricultural Water Technologies undergraduate course offered by Dr. Hadi Jaafar, Associate Professor of Irrigation Engineering & Water Management and Chairman of the Department of Agriculture, students got introduced to innovations in irrigation practices, as well as the use of drone technology in various agricultural applications.
With practical sessions performed at the Advancing Research Enabling Communities Center (AREC) on March 30, April 6, and April 13, students learned how to measure flows in open channels. Students also grasped the evaluation methods of sprinkler irrigation systems. During another session, students assessed furrow irrigation system efficiency, which despite agricultural technological advances, remains the most used irrigation practice in the world. Students also performed field topography measurements using surveying equipment to determine field slopes for irrigation design.
Using the world-class DJI M2 Combo Drone and the MicaSense drone sensor for vegetation mapping, students were introduced to UAV technology in applications of smart irrigation and digital agriculture. Students worked with professional multispectral and thermal sensors for agriculture and familiarized themselves with the various applications of drones in farming operations.
Agriculture has made incredible strides over the years. Continuous advances are transforming how farmers operate and what societies can achieve through agriculture. The adoption of technology-based approaches in agriculture is vital to prepare the youth, farmers of the future, to engage further in agriculture.