The aerial application industry has always been one to welcome innovation. In the past 100 years, technical advancements have been no less than astounding. This has been especially true in the last 15-20 years. Now, the industry is being introduced to a relatively new technology that solves many aerial application problems.
Suppose a pilot could change two of the most critical parameters of spraying during an application and just suppose the pilot wanted to change the spray droplet size to a predetermined one because the wind component changed, or they detected a temperature change? Maybe the application rate needed to be adjusted without affecting the boom pressure. To make these changes while literally “on the fly” would be a game-changer for ag aviation.
CapstanAG’s SwathPRO Aerial Application System is a sophisticated aerial spray system that can deliver all the above. SwathPRO’s technology surpasses anything ag aviation has seen in spray system technology. The system can alter the swath width and flow rate with predetermined settings by cutting off individual nozzles and adjusting spray boom pressure while in flight.
It gets better. While in flight, the pilot can select individual nozzles to cut off or on. This can be advantageous when a nozzle is streaming. The pilot also can choose either the left, right, or center booms individually or a combination of boom selections while spraying and further enhance the control of the spray. This feature is incredibly beneficial. For example, the pilot can spray the boundaries with a large droplet spectrum where there is a concern for drift and finish the field’s interior with a finer droplet spectrum.
Based in Topeka, Kansas, CapstanAG is no stranger to liquid applications. Since 1994, CapstanAG has specialized in pressure control and flow distribution on self-propelled sprayers, creating the patented Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) technology which has become a standard in the industry.
Significant milestones reached with the SwathPRO system include 1.7 million acres covered in the past three years, cockpit integration with controllers, and Auto Mode that controls the flow control valve to keep constant boom pressure regardless of aircraft speed or rate changes. Using CapstanAG’s unique PWM, each nozzle is controlled from the cockpit. Coupled with the PWM solenoid valve, Auto Mode provides proper flow distribution of the spray liquid.
CapstanAG is partnering with Air Tractor and Air Tractor dealers for installations, service, training, marketing and sales. All SwathPRO sales go through Air Tractor as a master dealer. The systems will be installed at the Air Tractor factory and Air Tractor dealers’ operations. All SwathPRO sales for all used planes will go through Air Tractor or its dealer network.
CapstanAG has a team of engineers and technical specialists who provide on-site service and support. CapstanAG is currently engaged with the FAA for STC approval of the SwathPRO System. Soon the system will be offered as an option on new Air Tractors from the factory. CapstanAG is firmly committed to this process and is investing in further advances for SwathPRO that will benefit ag pilots.
The CapstanAG’s patented technology, pilot feedback and industry knowledge in flow distribution bring a new spray system, the SwathPRO Aerial Application System, to the aerial application industry focused on pilot safety, application accuracy and drift mitigation.