The Northern Herd application was a unique undertaking and RTA is very proud to have been instrumental in assisting the company with automating their milk sampling and matching program.
As each cow in the herd enters the milking shed it is electronically detected and identified by means of an ear tag, and its presence is recorded. During the milking program a mid-stream sample of the milk is taken, labelled with a bar code and placed in a rack. There are two milking sessions each day and each sample from both milking sessions is placed randomly in a matrix.
The sorting robot then passes a laser scanning head over all the samples, remembering where each sample is. The program then matches the two samples taken from each cow, collects each pair and places them side-by-side on a conveyor. Please take a look at the attached video showing the scanning head (white cylinder) recording the samples. You can see brief flashes of red light … it is a distance shot so you may have to look very closely! The second section of the sequence shows the robot matching the samples and placing them side-by-side on the conveyor.
As you can imagine, integrating the entire process from when the cow enters the milking shed to sample testing is technically complex … and RTA has the technology, experience, expertise and skill to deliver results!