Autosteering systems are becoming increasingly popular in agriculture. A tractor autosteering system is an assisted system that automates the steering of agricultural vehicles to improve the accuracy and efficiency of farming operations. It utilizes GNSS technology and multiple sensors to guide the vehicle along a planned path, allowing the farmer to focus on other tasks. It ensures that crops are planted and harvested in a proper manner, helping farmers to optimize their crop yields.
There are two main types of autosteering systems available – hydraulic and electric autosteering systems. We will walk you through the differences between these two systems and help you understand which one might be right for your needs.
Hydraulic Autosteering System
A hydraulic autosteering system is a system that directly controls steering oil to generate the necessary pressure to steer the vehicle. It typically consists of a GNSS receiver, control terminal, and hydraulic valves.
Electric Motor Autosteering System
In an electric autosteering system, an electric motor is used to control the steering, instead of hydraulic valves. The electric motor is usually mounted directly onto the steering column or on the steering wheel. Like the hydraulic system, the electric autosteering system also uses a GNSS receiver and a control terminal to determine the tractor's position and make necessary steering corrections.
Selecting Between the Two
When deciding between a hydraulic autosteering system and an electric autosteering system, there are several factors to consider.
By keeping the steering wheel stationary during operation, the hydraulic autosteering system effectively minimizes vibrations from rough terrain, ensuring precise and stable performance in uneven fields and high-speed modes. If you operate large agricultural vehicles or manage large fields, or deal with challenging terrain, a hydraulic autosteering system might be the better choice.
Electric autosteering systems, on the other hand, are generally more compact and easier to install than hydraulic systems, making them a better option for smaller fields or agricultural vehicles.
The hydraulic autosteering system does not require the replacement of the steering wheel, making it a good fit for those who do not wish to change their original steering wheel. On the other hand, the electric autosteering system requires the installation of an electric motor, which means that the original steering wheel needs to be replaced.
Hydraulic autosteering systems tend to be more complex to install compared to electric systems. This is due to the need for hydraulic components such as pumps, hoses, valves, and cylinders, which must be properly connected and routed throughout the tractor. Electric autosteering systems, on the other hand, have fewer components and simpler connections, making the installation process generally quicker and easier.
Calibration and Setup
Both hydraulic and electric autosteering systems require calibration and setup after installation to ensure proper operation and steering accuracy. While hydraulic systems may require less calibration and don't even need to change any parameters after calibration, electric systems may need more calibration processes.
Hydraulic autosteering kits require regular maintenance, including changes to the hydraulic fluid and regular checks on the system. Electric autosteering systems, on the other hand, typically require less frequent maintenance, as they have fewer moving parts.
Hydraulic autosteering kits directly steer tractors via hydraulic valves while electric ones use an automated steering wheel to simulate manual driving. The steering wheel remains still when a hydraulic autosteering system is used, bringing a more comfortable working experience.
With either system, you'll be able to enjoy greater efficiency and accuracy in your field work, freeing up more time to focus on other aspects of your farm. To make the best choice, it's essential to assess your specific needs and objectives, as the ultimate goal is to boost crop yields and optimize your agricultural processes. FJDynamics provides a range of versatile solutions, including the FJD AH1 Hydraulic Autosteering Kit, FJD AT1 Autosteering Kit and FJD AT2 Auto Steer System. Discover more about these innovative systems designed to elevate your farming experience and productivity.