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Electric Tractor

Blog

Farming Forward

Electric Tractor

Grant Schultz

VersaLand Farm operates forward of common practice, and we're proud of that.  Here's one way we innovate:

In our work to maximize profits and be an energy independent farm, we focus on resilient technologies. The constant question is, "How do we foster independence?'

Grant Schultz, hacker-in-residence at VersaLand Farm, built an electric-powered tractor.  Used for planting, cultivating, mowing and hauling; it's a true plug-in, charged from the conventional grid, photovoltaic panels, or turbines.

Some innovative features:

  • E-PTOs Tractor has electric power takeoffs. Instead of using inefficient mechanical PTO shafts, powered implements attach quickly with a special Anderson plug. This adds all sorts of efficiencies and versatility.
  • DC/AC Inverter The tractor uses a 2500W power inverter to supply two traditional 110V AC outlets. This means ANYTHING you would typically plug into the wall of your home can be used in the middle of a field. Drills, chargers, lights, and saws are all effortless.
  • On-board Charger The tractor plugs into a regular 110V wall socket to charge. The charger is programmed to automatically shut off when the batteries are full, avoiding overcharging and extending battery life.
  • USB ports Charge your smartphone while on the tractor.
  • Waterproof Stereo System Adopted from marine applications, combined with a line-in from an iPhone, the tractor operator can listen to podcasts or stream Pandora for the operator, crops, and field workers. Music for motivation.
  • No-till Cultivator Using the E-PTO system, this tractor can selectively mow down strips of cover crop, leave it as mulch, and no-till plant into the residue. In one pass. Burning no diesel fuel.
We'll post some more videos later and polish this post as time goes on, but here's some photos of the build.

Special thanks to Nikola Tesla and Ron Khosla, their passion laid the creative groundwork to build this tractor.  Thanks, gents.