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How a 30-Ton Robot Could Help Crops Withstand Climate Change

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How a 30-Ton Robot Could Help Crops Withstand Climate Change

On a green swatch in the Arizona desert, a 30-ton robot is scrutinizing plants that could help feed impoverished countries and fuel American cars.

The 70-foot-tall colossus, called a “Field Scanalyzer,” is the world’s biggest agricultural robot, the project’s researchers say. Resembling an oversize scaffold with a box perched in its middle, it lumbers daily over 2 acres of crops including sorghum, lettuce and wheat, its cluster of electronic eyes assessing their temperature, shape and hue, the angle of each leaf.

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