We held our Sentera NDVI webinar August 11, 2017, to give an introduction to NDVI analysis with a focus on Sentera sensors and UAV platforms. Below is the full webinar as well as Q&A from attendees. For any additional questions, please send us an email to sales@dslrpros.com

1.) How Long is the lead time for a Sentera NDVI Kit?
We do stock standard configurations of these kits and delivery is typically 1 – 5 business days depending on if you require a custom-built solution.

2.) Do you offer financing for all of your solutions?
We have great financing programs designed to support small to medium businesses, start-ups as well as established businesses. Our financing options feature low monthly payment terms between 12 to 60 months, 100% Tax deductible payments and lines of credit to help your business grow.

3.) Can the Sentera NDVI Kits be used for golf course irrigation to highlight possible problems and water management?
Absolutely, true NDVI analysis is the most effective tool to monitor vegetation stress due to irrigation & fertilizer deficiencies. Additionally, NDVI can be used to identify pooling water and drown outs.

Generally, water measures an NDVI value around -1. In order to visualize this in the AGVault NDVI toolkit you would adjust your values to range from (-1 on the low end and -0.75 on the high end), then set your bin count to “1”. This will generally represent an estimate of water in your field. Because this is just an estimate you will need to tune the positions (of the low end) relative to your knowledge of the field.

4.) Can you upgrade my existing Phantom 4 Pro with the Sentera NDVI Kit?
Currently we are only offering full kit bundles, however, we will soon offer upgrade options for existing owners of Phantom 4 series platforms. Send us an email request and we’ll get you some information about your options. – sales@dslrpros.com

5.) Can my Phantom 3 be upgraded with the Sentera NDVI Kit?
Yes, the Sentera NDVI kit is supported on the Phantom 3 Series drone but only for the Professional and Advanced models.

6.) What is the difference between a multispectral and NIR camera?
A multispectral imaging camera typically will have 4 or more sensors which capture light in different frequencies (e.g. Red, Blue, Green, in addition to NIR) vs single NIR sensor. Multispectral sensors are typically used for scientific projects where there is a need to cover a wide range of vegetation species or a grower that has a wide range of crops to monitor.

However, the NIR frequency is by far the most extensively used band for compiling most of the vegetation indices in agriculture due to the high reflectance levels from chlorophyll which can easily be correlated back to vegetation vigor

Within the NIR band alone you can hit all of the following crop management areas:

  • Soil property and moisture analysis
  • Crop health and stress analysis
  • Water management
  • Erosion Analysis
  • Plant Counting
  • Count acres of hail, wind, or animal damage
  • Assess herbicide & fertilizer performance

7.) Can the Sentera NDVI Kit monitor nitrogen levels?
The Sentera NDVI Kit is focused on plant health and stress analysis where as the Normalized Difference Red Edge Kit or (NDRE) for short is calibrated for Red Edge which covers nitrogen levels. Send us an email and we can discuss your options in greater detail. – sales@dslrpros.com

8.) Would I be able to use other 3rd party software besides AGVault to analyze the imagery I’ve captured?
While Sentera has worked hard to streamline and simplify the entire process workflow from A to Z they do understand that others might want to use other 3rd parties specialized applications like Pix4D, Agrisoft or Autopano Giga. AGVault can format and export data files with all of the previously mentioned popular stitching tools.

9.) Would I be able to export shape files or share my maps with my Agronomist?
Yes, just as AGVault will format its data files for common 3rd party stitching programs you can also export or share your shape files and field maps with anyone you wish, directly from the application.

10.) What are the price points for the Sentera NDVI solutions?
The price range for the Mavic Pro NDVI kit is $3,995 and the Phantom 4 Pro Deluxe NDVI kit is $4,995, both of which are for sale on our website.

11.) Which NDVI kit is better (Mavic or Phantom 4 Pro)?
This depends on your personal portability requirements. The Mavic Pro NDVI kit is an extremely small and portable system that can be carried and deployed from a small shoulder bag, and can take RGB images at 12 MP. The Phantom 4 Pro NDVI kit is transported in a travel case which may require deployment from a small ATV or other type of vehicle, and can take RGB photos at 20 MP.

12.) Can you establish specific coordinates for trouble spots?
Absolutely. Every RGB and NIR photo is geotagged with GPS coordinates which allows you to tag a specific trouble spot with notes and translate that into the companion mobile app for scouting and ground truthing. The AGVault mobile app allows you to also take images with your smart phone and sync them up within your field for later reference.

13.) Do the Sentera sensors work with Drone Deploy?
Yes, the Sentera imagery will also work with a 3rd party cloud stitching application like Drone Deploy.

14.) What altitude do you recommend for the highest quality data while also minimizing flight time to cover a large area?
This is a rather complicated subject and to answer it accurately requires more details for consideration like camera sensor resolution, FOV, field size, the level of detail required, and of course if there are any flight altitude restrictions in your area. As you can see there will not be one single answer to this question as there are many variables to consider. Send us an email and we can connect you with a resource to get you the answers to your specific business case.

15.) How does the Sentera sensor compare to the MicaSense Sequoia?
The Sentera sensor is a single NIR focused system dedicated to crop health & stress analysis through NDVI processing where the MicaSense Sequoia is a multi-spectral sensor (containing more than one sensor). Generally, a multispectral sensor is used for scientific projects where there is a need to cover a wide range of vegetation species or a grower that has a wide range of crops to monitor.

The most important band (which is covered by both sensors) is the NIR frequency, which is by far the most extensively used band for compiling (most) vegetation indices in agriculture due to the high reflectance levels from chlorophyll, which can be easily correlated back to vegetation vigor. 

16.) There’s major agriculture in my area, any idea on who to sell to? (i.e., what types of companies are needing this (besides the local farm owner)?
The price point and ease of use of this kit makes it ideal for farmers or farming collectives to purchase and use themselves. In the case of a farmer or collective that does not wish to purchase a kit for themselves, it is best suited to provide services for ground crops (ie corn, wheat, beans, etc) and not as ideal for large tree crops (ie nut trees, oranges, apples, etc). So your focus should be on ground crop farm land.

17.) Will you be able to pick-up drain tiles in the field?
Yes, as noted in the presentation, water typically has a near-infrared reflectance level of -1 on the low end and -0.75 on the high end, which can be filtered out in your NDVI analysis to identify pooling water or drown outs within your field.