Case Study


Switzerland contains a total vines area of 14712 ha. The annual turnover of the grape growers in Switzerland is approximately CHF 550 million. 

For the optimisation of the grape harvest, viners treat the plants with pesticides, multiple times per season. Traditionally, this work is mostly performed manually or with specialized machines, which is physically very demanding on the one hand and can be time-consuming on the other. 8-10 treatments are applied, which gives a rhythm of about 10 days for the repetitive spraying with pesticides. A mildew attack does not only destroy the actual harvest in the worst case, it even has negative effects for the following years.

On very steep slopes, there is a big risk of accidents with the vehicles, as these can overturn. Numerous deaths from the past years testify to this.

For the winegrowers, treating the vines from the air with an agricultural drone brings clear operational advantages. Some winegrowers have already had some experience with this and there is a certain acceptance of the new technology.

1. Purpose of the Spray 

Crops: vines (seedlings, young plants, grown up plants)

Diseases: powdery mildew, Downy mildew, other fungal diseases 

2. Info of the Environment

Date of Spray2-3/6/2020, 8/6/2020, 16/6/2020, Repeat every weekLocationHallau, Switzerland
Type of TerrainFlat & SteepTemperature(℃)15 – 25°C
Total sprayed Area(ha.)3.5 ha. of young plants
4 ha. of adult plants
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3. Operation Parameters

Type of DroneMG-1P & T16Firmware VersionT16: V02.01.0312MG-1P: V02.01.0012
Operation modeIntelligent route planningOperation SpeedT16: ~3m/sMG-1P: ~1.5m/s
Operation height(from the top of the crop)3mLine spacing/width3m/4m(according to the planning line width)
Liquid amount sprayed per hectare100 l / haNozzle typeXR110015VS
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4. Info of Chemicals 

Chemical commercial nameFormulationActive ingredient and the percentage Chemical amount(g/ml) used per hectare
FolpetWGFolpet 80%1.2kg/ha
BoosterSCKaliumphosphonat 51.7%1 L/ha
CelosWGSchwefel 80%2.4 kg/ha
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5. Conclusion 

A lot of vines are sprayed in Switzerland with drones. This client is special because we spray young plants for him, which are especially sensitive and valuable. Manual spraying is done with tractor, but they have lots of problems in steep hills. 

The drone spraying application is very dense monitored by the customer who is a country widely-known specialist for young vines. He built up special landing platforms for the spraying drone.

Spraying in vines is mostly for preventing against the disease happening. 

Downey mildew happens if no spraying.
Healthy plants after spraying

The client actively compares drone spraying with earlier tractor spraying. The client is happy with drone spraying, reasons:

  • No personal contact to pesticides
  • Same speed in flat terrain as tractor, however, in steep terrain the DJI Agras has a much higher efficiency.
  • No phytotoxicity happens.
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Source: DJI Agriculture

Warm prompt: The content and parameters provided here are just for reference. You should adjust the operation mode and the parameters and use a correct way to spray your field according to the different weather, the crop characters, the habit or history of using chemicals (you could change other chemicals in case that the resistance occurs), etc. If you are not sure what operation parameters you will choose or not sure about the spraying efficacy, then you should firstly do a small plot test in this field before a big area spray.