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Summer-long University of Illinois Agronomy Days now underway

URBANA, Ill. — Last year, the University of Illinois tried something new with its longstanding Agronomy Day. After more than six decades, the single-day ag education event was no more.

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Automated agricultural machinery requires new approaches to ensuring safety

URBANA, Ill.From self-driving tractors to weeding robots and AI-powered data collection, automated machinery is revolutionizing agricultural production. While these technological advancements can greatly improve productivity, they also raise new questions about safety measures and regulations.

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Poor soils lose carbon regardless of crop residue and nitrogen inputs

URBANA, Ill. — Let’s say you’re a corn grower farming on low-fertility soil. How do you go about making that soil healthier and more fertile? Many farmers think if they add plenty of nitrogen fertilizer, that nutrient, along with carbon, will be stored in the soil as organic matter when microbes decompose crop residue.

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Toward women and youth’s access to postharvest mechanization in Bangladesh

In observance of Earth Day (April 22), we share work being done by Maria Jones, associate director of the ADM Institute for the Prevention of Postharvest Loss, and Samantha Lindgren, assistant professor in the Department of Education and affiliated faculty member in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering and the Technology Entrepreneurship Center in the Grainger College of Engineering.

By Sam Lindgren, Ghaida Alrawashdeh, and Maria Jones

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Oldest US agricultural plots go digital: 130+ years of data now online

URBANA, Ill. – In 1876, when University of Illinois professor Manly Miles established the Morrow Plots, he couldn’t have imagined the plots would become the oldest continuous agricultural experiment in the Western Hemisphere. Nor could he imagine, more than a century before the dawn of the internet, that the plots’ data would be digitized and made available online to scientists, students, and educators around the world.

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New grant to reveal tillage effects on crop yield, farmland sustainability

URBANA, Ill. – Researchers from the Agroecosystem Sustainability Center (ASC) at the University of Illinois can detect soil tillage practices from space, weaving together data from ground images, airborne sensors, and satellites.

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Dairy sector boasts 100 years of successful herd data collection

URBANA, Ill. – The U.S. dairy industry operates a comprehensive data collection program that records herd production information from farmers nationwide. The program provides crucial input for cattle breeding and genetics, and its cooperative structure ensures benefits for producers and scientists alike. A new study from the University of Illinois explores the program’s century-old history, highlighting its relevance for modern agriculture and digital data collection.

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Local manure regulations can help reduce water pollution from dairy farms

URBANA, Ill. – Animal agriculture is a major source of water pollution in the United States, as manure runoff carries excess nutrients into rivers and lakes. Because of their non-point source nature, most farms are not regulated under the federal Clean Water Act. This leaves pollution control up to the states, resulting in a patchwork of different approaches that are difficult to evaluate.

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DOE renews bioenergy center at Illinois

URBANA, Ill. -- The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has committed another round of funding to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign to lead the second phase of its Bioenergy Research Center — one of four large-scale DOE-funded research centers focused on innovation in biofuels, bioproducts, and a clean energy future for the country.

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