via Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology
Raman leaf-clip sensor would allow rapid diagnosis of nutrition deficiency in plants, enabling farmers to maximise crop yield in a sustainable way
- Portable device allows rapid detection of nitrogen deficiency – a critical nutrient for plant health
- When tested on popular vegetables such as Spinach and Kai Lan, the device was also able to detect levels of other metabolites; allowing measurement of a wider range of plant stress phenotypes such as drought, heat/cold, saline and light stress
- New tool offers economical, sustainable, and environmentally-friendly method to fight food insecurity
Researchers from the Disruptive & Sustainable Technologies for Agricultural Precision (DiSTAP) Interdisciplinary Research Group (IRG) of Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), MIT’s research enterprise in Singapore and Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory (TLL) have designed a portable optical sensor that can monitor whether a plant is under stress. The device offers farmers and plant scientists a new tool for early diagnosis and real-time monitoring of plant health in field conditions.
Precision agriculture is an important strategy for tackling growing food insecurity through sustainable farming practices, but it requires new technologies for rapid diagnosis of plant stresses before the onset of visible symptoms and subsequent yield loss. SMART’s new portable Raman leaf-clip sensor is a useful tool in precision agriculture allowing early diagnosis of nitrogen deficiency in plants, which can be linked to premature leaf deterioration and loss of yield.
In a paper titled “Portable Raman leaf-clip sensor for rapid detection of plant stress” published in the prestigious journal Scientific Reports, SMART DiSTAP and TLL scientists explain how they designed, constructed, and tested the leaf clip that allows the optical sensor to probe the leaf chemistry and establish the stress state.
“Our findings showed that in vivo measurements using the portable leaf-clip Raman sensor under full-light growth conditions were consistent with measurements obtained with a benchtop Raman spectrometer on leaf-sections under laboratory conditions,” says MIT Professor Rajeev Ram, co-Lead author of the paper and Principal Investigator at DiSTAP. “We demonstrated that early diagnosis of nitrogen deficiency – a critical nutrient and the most important component of fertilizers – in living plants is possible with the portable sensor.”
While the study mainly looked at measuring nitrogen levels in plants, the device can also be used to detect levels of other plant stress phenotypes such as drought, heat and cold stress, saline stress, and light stress. The wide range of plant stressors that can be detected by these leaf-clip Raman probes and their simplicity and speed makes them ideal for field use by farmers to ensure crop health.
“While we have focused on the early and specific diagnosis of nitrogen deficiency using the leaf-clip sensor, we were able to measure peaks from other metabolites that are also clearly observed in popular vegetables such as Kailan, Lettuce, Choy Sum, Pak Choi, and Spinach,” says Dr. Chung Hao Huang, co-first author of the paper and Postdoctoral Fellow at TLL.
The team believes their findings can aid farmers to maximise crop yield, while ensuring minimal negative impacts on the environment, including minimising pollution of aquatic ecosystems by reducing nitrogen runoff and infiltration into the water table.
“The sensor was demonstrated on multiple vegetable varieties and supports the effort to produce nutritious, low-cost vegetables as part of the Singapore 30 by 30 initiative,” says Professor Nam-Hai Chua, co-Lead Principal Investigator at DiSTAP, Deputy Chairman at TLL and co-Lead author of the study. “Extension of this work to a wider variety of crops may contribute globally to improved crop yields, greater climate resiliency, and mitigation of environmental pollution through reduced fertilizer use.”
The portable Raman system was designed in collaboration with local company Technospex Pte Ltd. The leaf-clip Raman sensor consists of a 3D printed clip that is built around a fiber-based Raman probe assembly.
The Latest Updates from Bing News & Google News
Go deeper with Bing News on:
Detecting plant stress
- Micropillar compression for finding heat-tolerant alloyson January 12, 2021 at 6:58 am
Metals containing niobium silicide are promising materials that can withstand high temperatures and improve efficiency of gas turbines in power plants and aircraft. But it has been difficult to ...
- The other virus that worries Asiaon January 11, 2021 at 4:17 pm
The death rate for Nipah virus is up to 75% and it has no vaccine. While the world focuses on Covid-19, scientists are working hard to ensure it doesn't cause the next pandemic.
- Ginger root and meteorite dust: the Steiner ‘Covid cures’ offered in Germanyon January 10, 2021 at 2:17 am
The movement best known for its schools is firmly entrenched within the German health sector ...
- Salvatore Milia to Join CLC Board of Directors and Lead R&D Committeeon January 8, 2021 at 9:17 pm
(the “Company” or “CLC” or “Christina Lake Cannabis”) (CSE:CLC) (FRANKFURT: CLB) is pleased to announce that Salvatore Milia will be appointed to the Company’s Board of Directors after recently ...
- Students detail efforts to make Ireland more climate resilienton January 7, 2021 at 11:15 am
Plants subjected to the initial stress went on to be less fragile ... Young Scientist: Cork student wins with programme to detect ‘deepfakes’ Cork student who designed software to detect ...
Go deeper with Google Headlines on:
Detecting plant stress
Go deeper with Bing News on:
- Global AI in Agriculture Market Size & Share Estimated to Reach USD 2,400 million by 2026: Facts & Factorson January 12, 2021 at 3:34 am
Facts and Factors have published a new research report titled "AI in Agriculture Market By Technology (Machine ...
- Agriculture Sector Facing Challenges of Falling Meat Consumption and Adapting to Climate Changeon January 12, 2021 at 2:28 am
ResearchAndMarkets.com published a new article on the agriculture industry "Agriculture Sector Facing Challenges of Falling ...
- County agriculture investment program applications now availableon January 11, 2021 at 9:20 pm
The much anticipated Hardin County Agriculture Investment Program, or CAIP Grant, now is available. Applications can be picked up and returned from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. from Jan. 11 to 31 ...
- Precision Agriculture Market 2021 Size, Sales, Share, Growth Analysis, Trends and Forecast by 2026on January 7, 2021 at 8:18 pm
The report “Precision Agriculture Market” in Global to 2026 - Market Scope, Development, and Predictions offers the ...
- Artificial Intelligence And Precision Farming: The Dawn Of The Next Agricultural Revolutionon January 7, 2021 at 4:50 am
Precision agriculture and automatization of food production are priorities for any food grower and, to an extent, for any stakeholder within the food industry. The technologies to achieve this new ...