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Type: Thesis
Title: Knowledge-based expert system for agricultural land use planning.
Author: Ponnusamy, Thirumurugan
Issue Date: 2008
School/Discipline: School of Social Sciences : Geographical and Environmental Studies
Abstract: The research constitutes a knowledge-based approach to land evaluation for selecting suitable agricultural crops for a land unit. This thesis presents the design, and development of a prototype Knowledge-based Spatial Decision Support System (KBSDSS) -“Crop Advisor”- for evaluating land resources and choosing suitable agricultural crops for a farm unit. The prototype “Crop Advisor” expert system (ES) utilises multiple knowledge rules to determine suitable, optimal crops for a farm unit considering the farm unit’s resources. It considers the land evaluation process as a group-decision making process involving many experts from diverse scientific domains. The expert system is powered primarily by human knowledge collected from a land evaluator or a crop expert. The knowledge base consists of representative rules to reflect physical, economic, environmental and social factors that affect the choice of land use. The expert system makes use of Geographic Information System (GIS) tools to manage spatial information that are required for the evaluation process. These powerful tools (ES and GIS) help in choosing a crop, from a group of crop choices that gives more economic benefits without compromising environmental values. The expert system model is tested on the soil and physiographic data provided by Department of Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation, South Australia (DWLBC) and Primary Industries and Resources, South Australia (PIRSA). This knowledge-based approach to land evaluation is built on the land evaluation framework designed by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). The DWLBC model of land evaluation suggests a strategic land use plan at regional level considering soil, climate and physiography which eliminates non-feasible land use or crop choices. The “Crop Advisor” expert system takes such regional data and suggests, in consultation with the farmer, a group of suitable crop choices that are best in terms of physical, economic, social and political factors associated with a farm unit.
Advisor: Harris, Kevin R.
Coffee, Neil Terence
Dissertation Note: Thesis (M.A.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Social Sciences, 2008
Keywords: expert systems; GIS; land use plan; crop advice; agriculture; crop suitability; land evaluation
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