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Graduate student team takes top prizes at national imaging competition

Thursday, July 3, 2014


MANHATTAN — A two-person team from Kansas State University won Best Overall Project and Employees Choice Video awards at the national Student Infrared Imaging Competition in Melbourne, Florida, June 27-28.

The team of Devin Mangus, master's student in biological and agricultural engineering, Kanorado, and Huan Wang, doctoral student in agronomy, China, won the third annual competition that allows students to showcase innovative ideas using thermal imaging technologies. The two brought home the $10,000 first prize for their project"Developing a Thermal Imaging System for On-Demand Canopy Temperature Mapping for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles(UAV)," as well as the $1,000 prize for Employees Choice Video.

Ajay Sharda, assistant professor of biological and agricultural engineering, is faculty adviser for the team and Mangus' major professor. Vara Prasad,professor of agronomy,is Wang's major professor.

The project presented by the Kansas State University students is part of the thermal infrared sensing systems research focus within Sharda's precision agriculture and machine systems group in biological and agricultural engineering, and Prasad's crop eco-physiology group in the agronomy department.

"Our goal here at K-State is to integrate thermal infrared and other sensing and automation solutions aboard UAVs to capture in-season crop water stress on a dense spatial and temporal resolution," Sharda said. "This will most efficiently utilize available water resources for precision irrigation approaches. Strategies and protocols for producers and stakeholders are being developed for safe and accurate use of both sensing systems and UAVs for variety of crop management practices."

This year student teams from 10 schools participated in the competition organized by DRS Technologies Inc., a Finmeccanica company and a leading supplier of products, services and support to military forces, intelligence agencies and contractors around the world.

To view the team's award-winning video, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMdchZ-ck_o.


Ajay Sharda


View the video. 

News tip

Kanorado and Manhattan

Written by

Mary Rankin

At a glance

The team of Kansas State University graduate students Devin Mangus and Huan Wang earned the top awards — and $11,000 — at the recent national Student Infrared Imaging Competition.