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Australian Plant Phenomics Facility

The University of Adelaide Australia

Crop Plant Root Module


  • Pricing and availability - please contact us by e-mail or on +61 2 6218 3430.

This module comprises destructive and non-destructive measurement of root growth, architecture, morphology, and water uptake in soil in controlled environments and in the field. Well-established methods include screening of root growth and architecture in clear-faced boxes, large germination papers, and long tubes of soil (50 cm) in controlled conditions. Controlled environment screening has been routinely coupled to field coring (seedling and adult plants to 2 m with tractors) for roots and soil water content, and indirect soil moisture measurements to detect the presence and function of roots. New non-invasive methods are in development for their second year in controlled and field conditions. These include optical, infra-red and electrical resistance measurements of roots directly or indirectly by measuring water uptake. Thermal imaging is being used in the field to detect plants with cool canopies that are taking up water with superior root systems. A Lemna-tech system in the Centre uses near-infrared (NIR) reflectance from soil columns; the reflected NIR allows for quantification of water depletion over time. Providing information on where and how much water is being used by the plant.

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Crop Plant Root Module : NIR Imaging of Soil Moisture

This module comprises optical, infra-red and electromagnetic detection of root morphology, structure and function in soil in controlled environments and in the field. The HRPPC has rhizo box imaging and time lapse root imaging plus both The Plant Accelerator and the HRPPC have NIR imaging of water in soil columns and roots in transparent pots (above). Also applicable to arabidopsis and root mutants. Outputs standard image files and stitched images (semi tomographic).

corn plant NIR monitoring NIR monitoring
Corn plant was grown in a transparent 8 cm polyacryl column. Results of NIR monitoring allow measurement of spatial distribution water content in soil. Total development of drying over time.

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