Solar Power Home Project
About this project
Tertill is a solar-powered and weatherproof robot that weeds your garden every day.
With Tertill, gardeners can now enjoy weed-free vegetable and flower gardens, without the monotony and frustration of weeding. Organic gardeners can breathe easy and enjoy a weed-free, chemical-free garden all season long.
Created by roboticist Joe Jones – inventor of the Roomba – Franklin Robotics’ Tertill is designed to live in your garden and take care of the weeding, come rain or shine.
Tertill lives in your garden and prevents weeds from becoming established. Using unique design elements and a variety of sensors, Tertill patrols the garden daily, avoiding plants and obstacles while looking for weeds to eliminate.
Tertill has a very simple method: weeds are short, plants are tall. A plant tall enough to touch the front of Tertill's shell activates a sensor that makes the robot turn away. A plant short enough to pass under Tertill’s shell, though, activates a different sensor that turns on the weed cutter.
Tertill Gently Avoiding Valued Plants
Because Tertill's approach is height-based, put one of the provided plant collars around short plants until they are tall enough for Tertill to recognize. When Tertill approaches the collar, it will recognize it and turn away.
Seedling Protected by Plant Collar
Tertill whacks weeds using a spinning string trimmer, which cuts the weed off near the ground. Because Tertill lives in your garden and goes looking for weeds every day, weeds are always small when the robot finds them.
Tertill Cutting a Weed
A whacked weed may sprout again, but sprouting takes energy stored in the seed or root. By coming back every day, Tertill never lets a weed develop the leaves it needs to replenish this energy, so eventually the weed gives up and dies.
Tertill gets its power from the sun. When there is sunlight—even on cloudy days—Tertill’s solar cell converts the light into electricity. The robot stores the energy in a battery. You don’t need to charge or replace Tertill’s battery. Tertill uses its stored power smartly—during cloudy stretches, when less power is available, it patrols for weeds less often. Tertill is more aggressive during periods with more sun. Fortunately, weeds grow more slowly when they have less light.