The next wave of automation is coming to large square baling in 2024 through Case IH Baler Automation. Designed for hands-free efficiency, Large Square Baler Automation maximizes throughput and delivers consistent, high-quality bales regardless of operator experience level. The dealer-installed automation kit connects seamlessly with Class 3 ISOBUS Puma, Optum and Magnum tractors.
“Productivity is the name of the game when it comes to the tight operating windows hay producers face,” says Brian Spencer, hay and forage marketing manager at Case IH. “Baler automation is the perfect example of purposeful technology from Case IH. It aims to tackle efficiencies by taking the duty off the operator to steer and make adjustments in field, allowing them to add productivity while in the cab.”
Case IH Baler Automation is the industry’s first LiDAR (light detection and ranging) baling system, opening unprecedented opportunities for hay producers in efficiency and productivity.
The LiDAR-based swath analysis sends out laser pulses to measure the position and size of the windrows. The technology adjusts the speed and steering of the tractor to maximize throughput without overloading the baler, resulting in increased runtime compared to traditional baling. With the automatic adjustments and hands-free baling, producers can put less experienced operators in the cab, or spend their time in the cab running farm operations or focusing on other business.
“This technology is built for the unpredictable yet expected challenges in baling with crooked windrows, and inconsistent widths and heights,” adds Spencer. “The automatic adjustments in steering and speed ensure the bales are consistent and the baler is running at peak performance, avoiding blockages and overfilling.”
Case IH precision technology through AFS Connect also ensures that tracking and monitoring is happening during the baling process. Hay producers can remotely monitor field performance and tractor diagnostics during baling, while securing records for review after harvest.
Baler Automation, being launched at the 2024 NCBA Cattle Con, is compatible with HD models from Model Year 2020 to 2024, and XL models from Model Year 2022 to 2024.