ARISE is the short name for the innovative infrastructure application "Agricultural Robotics and Intelligent Sensing Ecosystem" led by NMBU REALTEK. This is a collaboration between key research groups at NMBU (REALTEK and VET), in addition to external partners at OsloMet, Nofima, and NORSUS. The application builds on NMBU's core topics in agricultural robotics for crop harvest, milking as well as primary food processing, with cross-cutting themes in sensing, artificial intelligence, rapid manufacturing as well as social-life cycle analysis. This combination of technological and social competence is considered by the project team, and stakeholders, to be crucial in bringing and optimizing automation in primary production and processing.
An application was submitted in November 2020, but that is not the end of the story by any means. Agri-food automation, particularly toward the primary production and processing stages of the value chain will benefit greatly from automation; to increase yield, to contribute to food security and reduced waste, as well as reducing pressure on labor forces, a topic that has really been emphasized during the covid-19 pandemic. This need was underlined by the extremely strong support from all relevant actors in the value chain; technology suppliers, researchers, end users, as well as legislative and administrative bodies.
As a result, the team looks at ways in which the ARISE initiative can begin already to support science, education and industrial needs in the short term, and build capacity to support long-term investment in agri-food robotics.
ARISE expects to contribe significant impact for science, education, industry and innovation, as well as society. It would hold a unique position as the only robotic and sensor based infrastructure in Norway focusing on agri-food challenges, which would be open for national and international use by relevant stakeholders.
Science impact: Robotic cognition and artificial intelligence; autonomous and collaborative operation; intelligent sensing; advancement of animal health and welfare; new social-life cycle analysis data sets.
Societal impact: Food security and responsibly production; gender equality; innovation and industry; improved job quality and working environment.
Innovation and industry impact: Robustness, flexibility and scalability; competitiveness; improved food safety and hygiene; education and industry-preparedness.