About the centre
At the National Centre for Engineering in Agriculture we develop solutions for a sustainable and profitable rural sector with research focusing on sustainable agriculture, energy use, water resources and food security.
Our research consists of five theme areas including:
- Irrigation and water management
- Sustainable soils and landscapes
- Precision agriculture
- Energy conservation and management
- Automation, robotics and machine vision
Today, researchers at the NCEA are developing adaptive systems that sense, control and monitor farming inputs such as water, fertilizer and chemicals by using variable rate technology, unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) and proximal sensors that function in real time.
The NCEA has also begun it's leadership of a significant 4-year international development project to help Indian, Nepalese and Bangladeshi marginal and tenant farmers across the vast Eastern Gangetic Plain to increase food production by growing an extra crop each year.
The NCEA's engineers and researchers are now working to develop new agricultural technologies. Our cutting edge machine vision techniques are able to 'see' and spray individual target weeks within a crop, delivering a projected 80% reduction in the use of herbicides.
At the NCEA we have been growing our capabilities in the areas of energy conservation and waste management recovery. Recently completed research activities have benchmarked energy use on farm involving a number of agricultural industries.
Issues surrounding food security and sustainable agriculture have initiated the development of precision farming systems and new technologies to improve cropping and animal production.
At NCEA, sustainable energy management in agriculture is a key research area which focuses on improving:
- energy usage
- renewable energy options
- the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
NCEA and USQ
Our research capabilities are aligned with USQ’s core research themes, which include:
- sustainable Systems through agriculture
- water resources
- food security.
For further information about the NCEA or our history, please contact us.