Geodialogue in Bonn – excellent and digital

The geobusiness region bonn, a network of the Geo-IT industry in the Bonn Rhein-Sieg area and the district of Ahrweiler, held its 8th GeoDialogue at the beginning of December 2019. In the “old church” in the Collegium Leonium, the Geo-IT initiative brought together representatives from science, business and administration to jointly experience projects in which Bonn proves to be exceptionally digital and excellent.

First part: Friedrich Fuß, Chief Digital Officer (CDO) of the City of Bonn, presented his concept according to which Bonn wants to become ‘Smartest City in North Rhine-Westphalia’ by the year 2025. With the help of existing solutions and those to be newly developed, Fuß and his team want to work on overcoming problems and using opportunities to make Bonn a prosperous city worth living in for its residents, business, administration and science.

In a second part of the program, Prof. Cyrill Stachniss and Prof. Heiner Kuhlmann presented the cluster of excellence PhenoRob. The spokespersons of the research association from Bonn University and Forschungszentrum Jülich showed how the completely new, technology-driven research approach, intends to shape crop production in the future. The aim is to use robotics, digitization, geodesy and machine learning as well as drone supported plant phenotyping to achieve sustainable and productive crop production. The project consists of modern monitoring of fields with drones and robots, whose data automatically document information on the condition of the crops using methods like artificial intelligence and machine learning. This results in methods for applying herbicides and fertilizers in a targeted and selective manner in order to minimize harmful effects on the environment and humans. Prof. Cyrill Stachniss: “PhenoRob is the only cluster in the agricultural sector in Germany and is therefore a unique selling point for Bonn. Here in Bonn, we want to establish the central and internationally visible focal point between agriculture, geodesy, artificial intelligence and robotics and show new ways in agriculture. This will strengthen the region and, like most of the Bonn Clusters of Excellence, bring new brilliant minds from all over the world to Bonn”. Prof. Heiner Kuhlmann: “We want to point out new ways to more sustainability and, in the long term, noticeably reduce the negative effects on our environment. This can be achieved by fundamentally new processing methods and broad support by intelligent robots.”

An excellent, agile Geo-IT network

Dr. Ulrich Ziegenhagen, deputy head of the Bonn Economic Development Agency and co-initiator of the ‘geobusiness region bonn’ was enthusiastic: “Even after 15 years, the network is still extremely agile and fits perfectly into the development of the city of Bonn in terms of digitization. It is one of the digital initiatives of the first hour and complements and enriches the city with its geo-IT expertise”.