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Market Overview

This approach to creating crop yield maps results in better management and increased production efficiency on farms. Yield monitoring technologies have been commercially available for corn and grain crops for at least twenty years and have since become stock equipment for most corn, grain, and cotton harvesters. Growers have grown to depend on yield monitors for making and evaluating management decisions, developing management zones, prescribing variable rate input applications, and for evaluating crop insurance values. Currently, hay is among the only major crops that does not have a widely implemented yield monitor. In order to transform this market, researchers at Clemson University have developed a hay yield monitor consisting of ultrasonic distance sensors that can be universally mounted on any hay baler. As developed, Clemson’s hay yield monitor utilizes inexpensive and robust sensors to monitor the mass flow intake of the baler, allowing farmers to utilize precision agriculture to foster economic efficiency and improved management practices.


Precision Agriculture

Technical Summary:

This yield mapping technology incorporates ultrasonic distance sensors mounted in front of the pickup on a hay baler to accurately measure windrow size (volume) during on-the-go harvest. The measurement is then correlated to bale weight. In addition, it allows for the creation of crop yield maps – spatially quantifying low- and high-yielding areas – to be used for making management decisions. Ultimately, this approach produces improved evaluation of crop management strategies, creation of management zones within a farm, and evaluation of hay crops for insurance purposes.


  • Enables on-the-go yield mapping of hay fields, producing an easy and more precise alternative to any existing methods
  • Precision farming invention, leading to economic monetary savings
  • Precise crop yield monitoring, creating evaluation of crop management strategies, specific management zones, and numerical evaluation of hay crops for insurance purposes

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Technology Overview

State of Development

Preliminary Prototype

Patent Type




Serial Number


CURF Reference No.



Kendall Kirk, Guy Ramsey

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