SeedStar™ XP monitoring system
SeedStar XP overview
 
SeedStar XP shown on the GreenStar 2 2600 Display

SeedStar XP shown on the GreenStar 2 2600 Display

SeedStar XP shown on the GreenStar 2 1800 Display

SeedStar XP shown on the GreenStar 2 1800 Display

Building upon the foundation of SeedStar 2, the SeedStar XP system takes planter monitoring to the next level. When paired with the GreenStar™ family of displays (GS 2600 or 2630 Display or the entry-level GS2 1800 Display), the SeedStar XP monitoring system provides more information about the planting process to the operator within the tractor cab.
 
Specific information about how the planter is performing enables the operator to make needed adjustments for implement optimization. After all, with the rising cost of seed corn, it is imperative to make sure that every seed is planted accurately and precisely within the seed furrow for maximum yield potential.
 
The SeedStar XP planting functions are fully integrated with the full spectrum of AMS applications such as Swath Control Pro™ for Planters, GreenStar™ AutoTrac™ Assisted Steering System, Apex™ Farm Management Software, Field Doc™ Data Collection, iGuide™, and others. Integrated planting technologies, for better asset utilization and ease of use, is just part of what SeedStar XP provides.

SeedStar XP seed singulation monitoring
 
SeedStar XP seed singulation planter run page

SeedStar XP seed singulation planter run page

Understanding the meter singulation performance on the planter is critical to minimizing the amount of seed multiples and skips. As a result, the SeedStar XP monitoring system provides real-time information from the row-units about the overall seed singulation performance.
 
As seen in the screen shot image to the left, seed multiple information is displayed on the top portion of the planter-at-a-glance bar with seed skip information on the lower portion. This provides the operator a better understanding of relative seed multiple and skip data on a row-unit basis; all within one easy glance at the planter-at-a-glance screen.
 
Also, within the seed singulation planter run page, information about row-units with the highest percentage of seed multiples and skips is provided in order to make necessary adjustments for better planter optimization.
SeedStar XP row-unit ride dynamics planter run page
 
SeedStar XP ride dynamics planter run page

SeedStar XP ride dynamics planter run page

While operating a planter, travel speed and field conditions can affect the amount of row-unit bounce that is experienced. Excessive row-unit bounce or vertical motion can cause problems with meter performance. To better understand the amount of row-unit vertical motion when travelling through a field, the SeedStar XP monitoring system provides real-time information on row-unit ride dynamics.
 
As seen in the ride dynamics planter-at-a-glance screen shot image to the left, the SeedStar XP system provides ride dynamic information for each sensor node that is mounted on the planter. Each sensor node transmits ride dynamic information for each planter frame section to allow for the operator to make necessary operating adjustments to improve overall planting performance.
SeedStar XP row-unit downforce planter run page
 
SeedStar XP downforce planter run page

SeedStar XP downforce planter run page

As row-unit downforce systems gradually change from heavy-duty downforce springs to pneumatic downforce, being able to understand the amount of "as-applied" row-unit downforce is needed while operating the planter.
 
With various soil conditions, moisture, etc. experienced while planting, it is imperative to have the ability to change actual row-unit downforce to have enough force for the Tru-Vee™ openers to penetrate the soil media. However in some conditions, having too much downforce applied to the row-units for effective opener penetration could cause problems with side wall compaction from the gauge wheel.
 
Side wall compaction within the seed furrow can cause hatchet roots to develop; or roots that do not have the ability to penetrate the seed furrow soil media. This could lead to poor plant emergence and eventually lower overall yield performance.
 
With the SeedStar XP monitoring system, row-unit downforce information is measured by the downforce sensor and sensor nodes and transmitted to the GreenStar 2 Display in the tractor cab (as seen in the image above). The row-unit downforce information is displayed on the top portion of the planter-at-a-glance bar with more row-unit downforce information on the lower portion.
 
Two different control options are available on 1770NT, 1790, and DB Series Planters for pneumatic downforce. The base pneumatic downforce system requires manual control of the downforce to maintain the desired planting results or row-unit margin. Optional active pneumatic downforce takes SeedStar XP even further by removing constant downforce adjustments from the operator and actively controlling the downforce system to maintain a desired target margin.
SeedStar XP seed spacing monitoring
 
SeedStar XP seed spacing planter run page

SeedStar XP seed spacing planter run page

Throughout the planting process, obtaining good seed spacing is critical towards achieving plant growing conditions for maximum yield potential.
 
Today, many items are adjusted on the planter prior to planting to optimize overall seed spacing performance. But after such adjustments are made, information about the actual seed spacing performance during planting was missing within the planter monitoring system. Now with SeedStar XP, seed spacing information is transmitted live via the GreenStar 2 Display to show the operator exactly what is happening with the planter behind them.
 
The SeedStar XP transmits seed spacing information onto the planter-at-a-glance bar for easy understanding of planter seed spacing performance. Also, information about seed skips and multiples is provided to help understand actual planter meter performance and other related system functions in order to make necessary adjustments if needed.
SeedStar XP full planter performance page
 
SeedStar XP planter details

SeedStar XP planter details

With the capability of monitoring differences in planting performance items such as seed singulation and row-unit downforce, having one screen to view all planter performance elements is needed to understand the whole planting system. SeedStar XP combines all of the various planting performance elements into one full-color, planter overview screen to enable for a quick understanding of relative planting functionality.
SeedStar XP half screens and other features
 
SeedStar XP seed singulation half screen

SeedStar XP seed singulation half screen

SeedStar XP seed spacing half screen

SeedStar XP seed spacing half screen

Other SeedStar XP monitoring features include:
  • Capable of monitoring individual row-unit and overall planter performance in terms of seed spacing, singulation, and row-unit downforce.
  • Split-screen applications to enable use of popular guidance features such as AutoTrac.
  • On-screen indication of sensor node/downforce sensor assemblies once configured within the monitor settings application
  • Full-color display icons for easy recognition and overall aesthetics
  • Pneumatic downforce system controls with the GreenStar Display application
SeedStar 2 monitoring original features
 
SeedStar XP retains all of those SeedStar 2 features that producers value and have come to expect:
  • Planter-at-a-glance. Allows operator to view relative population levels of all rows on one screen
  • Automatic valve calibration. With the SeedStar variable rate drive (VRD), this is now completed automatically. There is no longer a need to manually calibrate the hydraulic valves
  • Increased population updates. SeedStar will now update population levels once per second at planter start up then approximately once every three seconds
  • Mapping of actual seed rates. When combined with Field Doc, actual and target seeding rates can now be mapped in Apex
  • Reprogrammable utilizing controller area network (CAN) via Service ADVISOR™
  • Improved diagnostics/event recorder. On SeedStar VRD planters, additional diagnostic information is available, as well as an event recorder to capture system performance data at a specific point in time
  • Ability to run motors at different population levels. On SeedStar VRD, operators running multiple motor systems can run each motor at a different speed, allowing different population levels within a planter
  • User-configurable high fertilizer pressure alarm. Allows the operator to be warned when fertilizer pressure reaches a specific level
  • Automatic quick-start for SeedStar VRD. No longer does the operator need to press the quick-start button on end row turns to resume planting
  • Automatic tractor speed source selection. When equipped with an 8000/9000 Series Tractor, the system selects the radar speed or allows for manual speed input selection
Components and operation
 
Planter main 2 controller

Planter main 2 controller

Sensor node assembly installed

Sensor node assembly installed

The SeedStar XP monitoring system contains the following components in order to support the planting data transfer to the GreenStar 2 Displays:
  • Seed monitor/variable-rate (SMVR) controller with model year 2011 or newer software
  • Planter main 2 controller (installed on all SeedStar XP eligible models for model year 2011 or newer)
  • Sensor node(s)
  • Downforce sensor assembly
 
The planter main 2 controller, processes the row-unit data from the sensor node assemblies located on the row-unit head casting. The processed information is then sent to the SMVR controller to be integrated into the displayed information being sent to the GreenStar Display.
 
Downforce sensor assemblies are found on row-units with sensor nodes installed. The downforce sensor assembly is assembled with the gauge wheel depth-adjustment handle and provides gauge wheel pressure information to the respective sensor node for data processing.
Downforce sensor installed

Downforce sensor installed

Downforce sensor assembly

Downforce sensor assembly

Depending on the planter size, different configurations of sensor nodes and downforce sensors are installed in support of the SeedStar XP monitoring system.
Optional Equipment On : 1720 16 row, 1720 CCS, 1720 CCS TR, 1770NT, 1770NT CCS 1790, DR, and DB Series Planters
 
Last Updated : 10-Oct-2011