The College of Agriculture at Montana State University will host a weeklong boot camp highlighting the future of precision agriculture and its potential for use in the state.

Sustainable Opportunities in Precision Agriculture runs June 6-10 at MSU’s campus and its research fields. The event is free and open to the public, but priority will be given to MSU upperclassmen and recent College of Agriculture graduates.

The camp will teach attendees about precision agriculture technologies for sustainable crop and livestock systems. Attendees are expected to leave with an increased understanding and aptitude for field characterization, field monitoring and mapping, decision-making processes and more.

Each day includes morning lectures on topics such as sensors, satellites and drones; data science; remote sensing data acquisition and analysis; soil characterization, monitoring and mapping; and digital farming. The lectures will be viewable through webinars for remote participants. In the afternoons, attendees gain hands-on experience with equipment such as those for soil mapping and field variable rates, and drones with multispectral cameras. In the classroom, attendees will create a map of the field and various aspects regarding yield, acidity and more.

Courses and demonstrations will be led by MSU faculty, including Scott Powell, environmental science spatial analysis; Frank Dougher, environmental science geospatial sciences; Shirin Ghatreh Samani, agricultural engineering precision agriculture; Gaurav Jha, soil science precision agriculture; Jasmine Neupane, plant science precision agriculture; Paul Nugent, electrical engineering precision agriculture; and Bruce Maxwell, forest ecology and weed science.

In addition, a keynote speech, free and open to the public, will be given June 9 by Terry Griffin, associate professor and cropping systems economist at Kansas State University. Griffin specializes in farm management and digital agricultural technology. He has received numerous awards in advancing digital agriculture, authored two patents on digital agriculture and presented his research around the world.

The boot camp is funded by a $200,000 grant from the CHS Foundation aimed at promoting precision agriculture and educating producers and communities about its benefits. Space is limited and applications must be submitted to attend. For more information and to apply, visit

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