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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Maricopa, Arizona » U.S. Arid Land Agricultural Research Center » Plant Physiology and Genetics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #380966

Research Project: Enhancing Abiotic Stress Tolerance of Cotton, Oilseeds, and Other Industrial and Biofuel Crops Using High Throughput Phenotyping and Other Genetic Approaches

Location: Plant Physiology and Genetics Research

Title: Open-source electronics for plant phenotyping and irrigation in controlled environment

item Kim, James
item Abdel-Haleem, Hussein
item Luo, Zinan
item Szczepanek, Aaron

Submitted to: Smart Agricultural Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/10/2022
Publication Date: 7/16/2022
Citation: Kim, J.Y., Abdel-Haleem, H.A., Luo, Z., Szczepanek, A.E. 2022. Open-source electronics for plant phenotyping and irrigation in controlled environment. Smart Agricultural Technology. 3. Article 100093.

Interpretive Summary: Collecting phenotypic data under controlled or open environment can be expensive and laborious, and integration of the phenotyping with water management is even challenging. A new cost-effective portable HTP system we developed can enable seamless sensor fusion and collect phenotypic data as well as soil water data to determine how much the pump irrigates. We were able to characterize phenotypic differences of two camelina varieties with plant temperature and height. The results indicated that camelina variety 1 (CAM212) showed a superior phenotypic traits and resistance to heat and drought stresses with cooler canopy temperature and taller canopy height. This system can be easily adopted by end users for other sensing and control applications such as in greenhouses, vertical farms, or outdoor fields with an affordable cost and flexibility of scaleup.

Technical Abstract: Integration of plant phenotyping and irrigation is particularly advantageous for identifying genetic variation associated with crop productivity. Collecting phenotypic data and water management under controlled or open environment can be expensive and laborious. This study aims to design a cost-effective solution for high-throughput phenotyping (HTP) and automated irrigation using open-source electronics. A portable HTP system was developed using a microcontroller and a single-board computer Raspberry Pi and was extended to include soil water monitoring and water pump control. An Arduino board was integrated with a multispectral camera, mini LiDAR sensors, infrared thermometers, soil moisture sensors, water pumps, and a temperature\humidity sensor. Sensor calibration and power management enhanced the accuracy and reliability of the system. Two genotypes (CAM212 and Giessen#4) of camelina were used to evaluate the system to measure phenotypic responses to abiotic stress in growth chambers under two temperatures (25°C and 35°C) and two water treatments (40% and 90% water holding capacity). The HTP system monitored 24 plants periodically, and data were wirelessly accessed by a smartphone and transferred to a computer for further analyses. The system revealed that camelina genotype 1 (CAM212) showed superior resistance to heat and drought stress. The results showed that the developed HTP system offers a cost-effective and portable solution for phenotyping and water management in controlled environment and can be modified for field applications.