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The challenge

Inefficient field phenotyping

Phenotyping, a scientific and systematic study of plant traits, is instrumental for the research community and agricultural industry to crack the code of the dynamic interplays among crop yields, environment, and farming management.

The challenge, however, lies in the difficulties of collecting field data. The traditional methods require farmers and scientists to measure crop characteristics with manual records or genetic markers. These slow, limited-scale, and labour-intensive processes often inflict destructive consequences on plants. A speedier and more accurate process is required to advance breeding techniques.

Our response

Solving the ongoing challenge of phenotyping

There is a global trend of investing in tech-enabled phenotyping systems, ushering in a new wave of product innovation. CSIRO's phenoMobile® technology is one of the leading ground-based vehicular systems empowered by integrated sensor technologies. It could provide more efficient, reliable, and cost effective solutions for accelerating large-scale data collection in various crops species.

The phenoMobile® is a manually-operated field phenotyping platform.

Integrated with the smart data analytic platform PhenoSMART®, scientists and farmers could turn data into plant knowledge to inform breeding selection, genetic studies, and optimise farm revenue generations.

PhenoMobile® features:

  • Great flexibility - an adjustable 4-wheel system operating at a speed range of 1-6 km/hr and an adjustable wheelbase range of ~1.2-2.4m, suitable for measuring plant heights in different growth stages (ground stage – 1.5m clearance stage)
  • Tech-enabled - a sensory payload consists of light-detection (known as LiDAR) devices and computer systems. Users can control this system through a customised graphical interface on a touch-screen tablet
  • High adaptability – suitable for different terrains including up to 10o slopes, moderately rough ground, dry arid soils, and wet and sticky soils
  • Wide Applicability – can be used to measure different crops including cotton, wheat, barley, triticale, rice, canola, legumes and other species
  • Simplicity – a turn-key, easy-to-use sensors system with automation options available.

The results

Commercialisation of phenoMobile®

The phenoMobile® platform is now ready for commercialisation. CSIRO is actively seeking investors and interested parties with technical, manufacturing and financial capacity to develop phenoMobile® technology.

Areas of scope include:

  • Manufacturing of the phenoMobile® technology in scale
  • Distribution bundled with post-sale service
  • Sales and marketing.

Download the Expression of Interest form PDF (767 KB)

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