Intelligent Drones for Farming

Drones are one of the latest gadgets finding their way into farming. And in the Philippines, Harbest Agriculture Corporation is introducing the use of the Agila Drone to make more efficient the application of agro-chemicals over a vast farming area.

The Agila M12 and D10 Intelligent Agricultural Sprayer Drones have 10- and 12-liter capacity, respectively, enabling them to spray agro-chemicals over a vast farming area.

What makes the Agila drones intelligent is both models have autonomous and manual modes, enabling them to apply agro-chemicals over farms with a pre-set route. This is made possible through their Intelligent AB Point Mode and Programmed Spray Route features.

The drones can also avoid obstacles and go back to their pre-set route, through a feature called Voyage Obstacle Avoidance.

The Agila M12 and D1 models also adjust to the terrain through the Terrain Following Radar feature.

A feature called Cloud Management Platform is also installed in both drone models, which is a personal computer, web-based system and mobile app providing real time management for precision and smart farming.

When it comes to actual spraying, the Agile Drone M12 and D10 have a feature called Smart Spraying System, where front and rear nozzles work separately. The flow of the liquid can also be doubled up to 3.2 liters per minute. The regular spray rate is 1.6 liters per minute.

The M12, obviously the higher model of the two drones, also has night operation mode. The following accessories also come with the M12: RTK stations; two fourth-generation (4G) remote controls; six pieces 16,000-mAh intelligent batteries; balance charger with two ports; and charger mate with five ports.

The M12 has an operational efficiency of 30 to 40 hectares per day.

On the other hand, the D10 has the following accessories: two 4G remote controls; six pieces 12,000- mAh batteries; and charger with two ports. It has an operational efficiency of 20 to 30 hectares per day.

Harbest sources its Agila Intelligent Agricultural Sprayer Drones from Eagle Brothers in China. The M12 is sold at P980,000 and the D10 at P780,000. Harbest also offers a one-year warranty and aftersales service and spare parts for the Agila drones.

For inquiries on the Agila drones, contact the Harbest customer hotline at,, 0917-520-3260 or 0917-3100131.

Bravo! Bravura
Versatile coffee roasting machine developed

A Filipino Engineer has developed a local version of a vertical roasting coffee machine that has the lowest cost compared to similar models available worldwide.

The Filipino version of the Bravura vertical roasting coffee machine was invented by Dr. Ruel M. Mojica, currently vice president for research and extension of the Cavite State University (CvSU). Early this year, he emerged as one of the four winners of the Manila Water Foundation (MWF) 2019 Prize for Engineering Excellence.

CvSU President Dr. Hernando D. Robles described the machine is “innovative – first ever in the Philippines, efficient and cost-effective.” The Bravura machine Mojica developed costs about P550,000, or $11,000, while its counterpart in the United States (VR-1 with 10-kilogram capacity) sells for $35,000, or P1.75 million, while its counterpart in Europe (GHIBLI R-15 with 5- to 15-kilogram capacity) costs $25,000, or P1.25 million.

Mojica’s Bravura machine can produce up to 10 kilograms of roasted coffee per batch of roasting in 20 minutes. All parts of the machine are made of stainless steel, including the well-designed auger that results in the even roasting of coffee beans.

It has a single-phase, 200-volt motor coupled with a microcontroller device for automatic operation. It can also roast peanut and cacao that both have growing markets in the Philippines and abroad.

Mojica said farmers in Palawan and Camarines Sur can benefit from the machine for the roasting of their cashew and pili nuts, respectively. The development of the machine is an offshoot of a joint project titled “Technology Piloting and Commercialization of Microcontroller-based Coffee Roasting Machine.”

It was initiated by the National Coffee Research, Development and Extension Center of CvSU in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Agricultural Research under the agency’s National Technology Commercialization Program.

The inventor-awardee

Mojica is one of the four awardees of the 2019 Prize for Engineering Excellence conducted by MWF, the only recognizing body in the Philippines that honors engineers who have made notable contributions in solving development problems in the areas of water, sanitation, environment and sustainability. It is conducted every two years in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the Philippine Technological Council (PTC), the umbrella organization of the 13 professional engineering organizations in the Philippines.

Mojica finished his Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Engineering, cum laude, at CvSU (formerly Don Severino Agricultural College) in Indang, Cavite, and both his Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Agricultural Engineering at the University of the Philippines Los Baños in Laguna.

He also rose from the ranks at CvSU — from instructor to assistant professor and later, associate professor. His current academic rank at the university is Professor V.

Mojica started his administrative function at CvSU as chairman of the Department of Agricultural and Food Engineering, one of the five departments under the College of Engineering and Information Technology; later as director of the National Coffee Research, Development and Extension Center based in CvSU; and currently as vice president for research and extension.

As a CvSU executive, Mojica is very active in pursuing the trilogy function of a state college and university: instruction, research and extension. And that also led to his developing the Bravura vertical roasting coffee machine for Filipinos