Virginia Tech Receives $1.5 Million in Grants to Assist Farmers with Robotics

In *All, Technology by Ag is America

Researchers at Virginia Tech received two grants from the National Science Foundation for nearly $1.5 million to enhance the quality of life for Virginia farmers via robotics and technological assistance. These two grants from the Partnership for Innovation and the Research Coordination Network, will be used to help farmers, one of the largest demographics in Virginia’s workforce.

The Partnership for Innovation grant is a collaborative effort between Virginia Tech’s College of Engineering, their College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and with a community partner, AgrAbility Virginia, a program that assists farmers with illnesses, injuries, or disabilities that impede their ability to work safely, effectively, and productively. This grant will be used to primarily to help farmers with mobility issues. Such technology will include wearable robotics, such as exosuits and other apparati, targeting back, knee, and hand applications. Working with AgrAbility Virginia and its statewide rural-rehabilitation network, the project team will address the human factors component of the technology and the need to educate farmers on its benefits and capabilities.

The Research Coordination Network grant is a collaboration between U.S. and international researchers working to enhance technology on mid-sized farms. This grant’s goal is to combine expertise from around the world and examine how technology can help mid-sized farms compete in an ever-more challenging and automated economy.

To learn more about these grants and Virginia Tech, read more here.

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