Just What the Heck is ISO 11783 and Why Should I Care?

Kurt Lawton

Insights WeeklyIf you’re not a tech head, ISOBUS talk may just be a flyover term that causes one’s eyes to glaze over. In reality, it’s a great technology standard that is working toward having all electronics of all implement brands and colors speak the same language.

In brief, ISO 11783 is an international standard of ‘electronic language’ that is specific to farm equipment. If a piece of equipment is deemed ‘ISO 11783 compatible’ then it can share electronic signals seamlessly with other equipment that is compatible. All compatible equipment/implements will have the same ISO 11783 wiring harnesses and connectors. And a display unit that can control an ISO 11783 sprayer, planter, baler, combine or other implement is called a ‘virtual terminal’.

In a recent Ag Leader Precision Point blog post, the company describes how its INTEGRA is compatible with the ISO 11783 (ISOBUS) Virtual Terminal Standard:

“We’re excited to give growers the option to control additional implements with one tool by offering Virtual Terminal capability on the INTEGRA display,” says John Howard, Product Manager. “Virtual Terminal functionality enables the compliant implement’s user interface to be viewed and controlled on the INTEGRA display. The INTEGRA display has been specifically designed so users can easily toggle between the Virtual Terminal run screen and the advanced mapping, guidance, and control functionality supported on the INTEGRA run screen.”
Virtual Terminal capability allows the ISOBUS compliant implement’s functions to be controlled on the INTEGRA display. Additional capabilities include interface to ISO compliant blockage or seed tube monitoring systems, as well as operation of ISO compliant sprayers and spreaders.

“This is the first step by Ag Leader in providing support for the ISOBUS standard,” says Howard. “Advanced features, including prescription file variable rate application and AutoSwath control, will be supported by future development efforts.”

The bottom line—lower costs within the supply chain and with growers, improved diagnostics and improved functionality. You’ll only need to have one controller in a cab (if all your equipment is ISO compatible), as it will easily plug and unplug into your tractor, sprayer, combine—no matter what brand equipment you are running. Granted, equipment companies who desire to keep their own proprietary electronic communications won’t work in an ISOBUS system, so growers must plan accordingly.

Visit these links for more information.

INTEGRA http://www.agleader.com/products/integra/

Ag Leader, Displays, Insights Weekly, Standards, sustainability