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David Sparks Ph.d Phenotyping in the field and greenhouse
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Line on Agriculture
Date: April 26, 2017

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Developing drought tolerant corn that makes efficient use of available water will be vital to sustain the estimated 9 billion global population by 2050. Gui DeSouza, an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science, and colleagues and students in his Vision-Guided and Intelligent Robotics (ViGIR) Laboratory partnered with researchers such as Felix Fritschi, an associate professor of plant sciences in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources to study the effects of climate change on crops.

One critical element was phenotyping. Phenotyping assesses growth, development, yield and items such as tolerance and resistance to environmental stressors by correlating these to physiology and shape of the plants. The engineering and plant science research team developed a combination, two-pronged approach using a mobile sensing tower as well as a robot vehicle equipped with three levels of sensors.

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