Discussions regarding the use of automotive communication technologies with ag vehicles, wireless infield communications and high-speed ISOBUS were among the highlights of the Autumn 2017 Agricultural Industry Electronics Foundation (AEF) Plugfest event.

Held in Stuttgart, Germany, the week-long event also included the testing of 130 products and numerous project team meetings. AEF Plugfest events occur every spring and fall, and they alternate between Europe and the United States. Developers gain tremendous value from their decision to attend, as Plugfest events provide them with the opportunity to test their ag electronic systems with one another.

“AEF Plugfest events serve to promote the value of working to ensure improved communications between tractors, implements and agricultural software produced throughout the world,” said AEM Technical Director Mark Benishek.

M2M Communication Standards

One of the Autumn 2017 Plugfest conference discussions centered on the Equipment Telecommunications Standard Institute (ETSI) and its selection of AEF as a partner in developing standards for information and communication (ICT) systems to be used globally.

AEF and other groups with have been tasked with establishing a communication package, one which serves to use wireless networks to warn people driving newer cars with communication centers of slow-moving machines on roadways. The collaborative effort is expected to lead to the development standards for machine-to-machine (M2M) communication between automotive vehicles and ag equipment.

“The tractors and combines of today are already broadcasting information,” said Benishek. “The idea here is to develop the communication networks necessary to provide connectivity between automotive and ag equipment and, at the same time, make our equipment safer on our highways. It’s a double win for all.”

High-Speed ISOBUS

The development of high-speed ISOBUS was another topic of note discussed at the Autumn 2017 Plugfest event. Efforts associated with high-speed ISOBOUS include:

  • Developing future-proof ISOBUS with higher bandwidth to satisfy increasing demands for control and data management
  • Compiling requirements for high-speed ISOBUS from use cases
  • Developing real prototypes for the validation of implementation on tractors and implements
  • Delivering a guideline for standardization of high-speed ISOBUS

Wireless In-Field Communication

How to ensure ag equipment operators can communicate with one another efficiently and effectively was also a focus of discussions at the most recent Plugfest event. The industry is in the process of working toward viable solutions to address wireless in-field communication.

Potential use cases exist for wireless in-field communication, and achieving interoperability will be the primary goal for the industry moving forward.

For more information on AEF Plugfest events and associated activities, contact AEM Technical Director Mark Benishek (mbenishek@aem.org, tel: 414-298-4118).