Managing weeds by electrophysical power without chemical residue
Just like electromobility for cars, the inspiring idea of managing weeds by electric power is more than 100 years old. But today recently invented concepts and electrotechnical components of the 21st century allow for efficient use of this chemical-free approach to plant weeding.
The general principle is simple, with the high-tech factor located in the technical details. Electric power is provided by a portable generator, which can be attached by a shaft to the power take-off (PTO) of the tractor, in most cases.
This power is then transformed into a powerful high-voltage and high-frequency AC or DC current which is modulated according to operating conditions. The electric power is transferred to several flexible electric applicators that are brought in direct, continuous contact with the shoots of the weeds. Depending on the type of weed (high leafy plants, low or high grasses) and the substrate below (soil or hard underground), the applicators will have a different design to guarantee optimal energy transfer.
Electric current runs through the leaves and stems into the roots of the weeds. In general, the electric energy damages the cells conducting and containing water and especially the vascular bundles – without the need to cook or burn them.
The power will sooner or later dissipate into the soil. The circuit is closed back to the tractor by additional electric applicators, which are either in permanent contact with the soil or with plant material.
The key point is that the system has a stable power supply, independent from the actual working status of the Electroherb system, whether it is running idle or working with full power due to extensive plant contact.
Our system has already been successfully employed in Brazil for several years, in various areas of agriculture as well as silviculture and in urban applications.