Database Research Summaries
A Public-Private Partnership To Use Drone-Acquired Metrics 2

calendar_today Year of Research: 2017
update Posted On: 02/21/2019
group Katy M Rainey (Lead Principal Investigator, Purdue University)
bookmark Indiana Soybean Alliance

Research Focus

Drone technology has a wide variety of potential benefits in its usage with soybeans. As it is with other precision technologies, this specific tool can be used both in determining continued breeding efforts as well as field agronomy.

The focus of this project is to help breeders select the highest yielding lines in the final breeding pipeline by the incorporation of drone-based canopy measurements. Thus the best option will be available for farmers. In addition the project will establish the most profit seed rating for farmers based on the canopy coverage.


  • Test efficacy of image-based parameters acquired with drones to increase the accuracy of yield estimation in multi environment yield trials of soybeans.
  • Develop methods to determine custom plant populations for all soybean varieties using UAS imagery.


  1. Using drone technology, canopy measurements have been made. Additional data from 2019 needs to be evaluated.
  2. Medium to high seed rating increase the yield in 14% compared with the low seeding rate. However, the change in yield between the medium and high seeding rate were marginal with just 5% of difference.


  • This project will help increase the selection accuracy of yield, leading to having the better lines selected and available for farmers.

For more information about this research project, please visit the National Soybean Checkoff Research Database.

Funded in part by the Indiana Soybean Alliance.