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Pilot Andrew Riche with the 'OctoCropter'
Drone technolgy now reaches down to the farm.
Plucky British scientists have come up with an ingenious way of surveying hundreds of acres of crops - by employing a 25,000 pounds drone helicopter used to film Hollywood movies.
The cutting-edge custom-built gizmo, known as an octocopter, flies low over 800 acres of wheat fields taking measurements that help researchers better understand how crops grow.
It can collect the same amount of information in a five-minute flight than a team of staff would collect in a day.
A relatively recent invention, drone helicopters are more commonly seen on movie sets where they are used to film aerial shots.
But the carbon fibre eight-rotor copter is now being put to work by boffins at Rothamsted Research, the longest running agricultural research station in the world.