High-tech farming demonstration? How the first laser mower works

Anyone who lives in a backyard and has at least a little garden knows that grass needs to be mowed fairly often if you don’t want your property to be overgrown with weeds.

The most handy solution is to buy a lawn mower. Even the cheapest models can do a pretty good job if the area to be mowed isn’t very large. But with the exception of the very expensive, fully robotic solutions, lawn care is still a time-consuming task with not very quiet equipment.

But what if you could achieve the same result without a bit of noise, by simply installing a gadget to do all the work remotely.

Similar to a garden sprinkler, the laser operated by left/right movements received to definitively solve the weed problem by imposing a maximum height to which weeds can grow before they are “melted”.

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Demonstrated over the course of an entire day, the system is not fast, but it does the job completely silently by “drying out” any grass blades sensitive to high-intensity light radiation. The downside? The system isn’t exactly friendly to pets or children who might come to play in the garden, both of whom risk permanent blindness from any contact with the laser beam. Another disadvantage would be that in drought-stricken gardens, dry grass could catch fire instead of falling over dry. Finally, even with a successful cut, someone will still have to collect the burnt grass, but not the cut grass. In other words, the method is only effective the first time it is used, after which the accumulation of plant matter raises the issue of human intervention again.

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As for the technical specifications of the equipment, it is a 40W blue light laser, taken from commercial equipment used for cutting and engraving materials. Over 8000x more powerful than an entertainment laser, the equipment could be just as well used as a weapon if another enthusiast decides to configure the gimball-like device to target the faces of unwanted visitors instead of grass at ground level.

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