Crestmead, Queensland (27 September 2022) – In an enormous boost in efficiency for Australian sugarcane producers, John Deere has introduced a world-leading two-row sugarcane harvester range that is 1.5 to 2 times more productive than single-row models.
Launched in Brazil in 2020, and now available to order in Australia, John Deere Global Cane Business Manager Jesse Lopez, said the CH9 Series had been tested on Australian soil for the past two harvests to ensure the machine was ideally suited to local conditions.
“We have worked with Australian growers over the past two harvests to receive fundamental feedback, and to prove the CH9 Series is designed to excel in the local environment,” Mr Lopez said.
“As a company, we’re committed to providing customers with machinery and technology to be the most productive, profitable and sustainable in the world, and the CH9 Series is the perfect example of John Deere innovation meeting the needs of today’s farmer.”
The CH9 Series was recognised at the AE50 Awards in 2021 for its innovative integration of two independent front feed systems and basecutters, allowing the machine to operate at a similar speed to a single-row unit, while maintaining the expected cane quality.
The CH9 Series joins the proven CH570 to provide producers with the option to order the CH950 in a 1.4 m to 1.5 m row width, and the CH960 as a 1.7 m or 1.9 m unit.
John Deere Production System Manager, Ben Kelly, said the CH9 Series was designed to support growers’ desire to achieve lower production costs per tonne, with Controlled Traffic integration – for significant benefits to soil health.
“The two-row system has proven to achieve in excess of 1.5 times more harvesting productivity1 while reducing machine hours by 33%. The CH9 Series also benefit from increased fuel efficiency, with the larger fuel tank meaning the new machines can potentially be fueled only once every 24 hours,” Mr Kelly said.
“In order to address the challenges of this increased harvest volume and uneven row height, John Deere engineers developed RowAdapt™ technology, allowing the base cutters to float independently. Cane from the two rows then merges in the machine right after the plant is cut.
“The RowAdapt system, coupled with a wider 10-blade chopper and redesigned primary and secondary extractor, reduces billet losses by up to 50%.2″
The CH9 Series also features a new 13.6 L Tier 4 engine with 50% larger displacement than the CH570 9L, and uses, on average, only 82% of the maximum hp capacity. Maintenance costs have also been reduced on the CH9 Series with new heavy-duty tracks and more wear-resistant components on the elevator.
As well as increased harvesting capacity, the CH9 Series is equipped to offer industry-leading precision ag technology with the inclusion of the new Gen 4 Monitor, 4600 CommandCenter™, providing the operator with more interaction and intuitive use.
At the soil level
Mr Kelly said as global demand grows for more sustainable and productive food and fibre, one of the most exciting developments of the new CH9 Series is its positive impact on soil compaction.
“The rebalanced CH9 Series offers a wider base aligning the harvester’s tracks directly in the centre of the rows, providing up to 60% reduction in soil compaction as the machine only travels on every second interrow,” he said.
“The reduced soil compaction and improved cut quality will also allow farmers to potentially increase the cane growth cycle from five to up to eight years.There are many benefits to extending the replanting cycle beyond just increased yields, including savings in input costs like planting and fuel, and the overall environmental impact of the production cycle.”
Original media release written by John Deere Australia.