GEVES has officially joined UMT CAPTE. The aim of UMT CAPTE is to develop high technology tools to better characterise status and functioning of field crops. UMT CAPTE is supported by Arvalis with the support of INRA (through the UMR EMMAH), ACTA, TERRES INOVIA, ITB and HIPHEN, an INRA spin-off for valorisation of tools developed within UMT CAPTE. Labelled in 2012 for five years, it has been renewed for another five years with new partners, including GEVES and the “Centre Technique Interprofessionnel des Fruits et Légumes ».
The meeting held in Avignon on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 officially launched "UMT CAPTE²" for a period of five years starting in 2018.
During the period 2012- 2017, the UMT designed and made a number of instruments, the most emblematic of which is the "Phénomobile" developed under the "PHENOME" project. Phénomobile V2 is a fully robotic platform with sensors (multi spectral cameras, LIDAR, etc.) for high-throughput phenotyping of crops field. A prototype was tested during the last campaign in Toulouse on sunflowers. It characterised 1,000 micro plots in 9 working hours. It allows to extract around twenty variables in relation to the structure of the canopy and the architecture of the plant, with a focus up to the organ. Two new machines are on order, for Clermont-Ferrand and Montpellier INRA stations.
The UMT has also worked on drone imagery, to propose new features of interest with this equipment such as counting of plants or organs, canopy height, leaf area index, fraction of photo-synthetically active radiation absorbed, leaf chlorophyll content, leaf rolling under water stress effect, stems diameter or coverage rate.
In parallel with these technical achievements, the UMT has also developed methods for interpreting the data acquired by these sensors, integrating them into computational chains, ranging from measurement to use in different applications.
All these developments have thus contributed to establishing an "ecosystem" of companies (i.e. Meca3D, Robopec) for creating measurement devices and data processing.
For the work program of the second stage of the UMT, acquisition of measurements will remain an important component but will focus on the design of a simple and light system of field crops phenotyping, adapted to small experiments (a few tens or even hundreds of micro plots).
Interpretation methods will be also an essential working point: it will enrich existing libraries but also improve methods by mobilising new algorithms, including the generalisation of "deep learning".
In connection with interpretation methods and big data management due to sensors, a data processing platform called "PROCROP" will be created. This work will focus on the definition of a standardised raw data format, which is necessary for the implementation or development of generic computing chains.
Finally, the scaling up of the agricultural parcel will be carried out, by implementing "IoT" solutions. In partnership with Bosch, Hiphen company is currently developing a system for measuring the temperature and humidity of the air and soil, rainfall, photo-synthesised active radiation, visible and spectral imaging. These measurements, taken with a daily time step, will be coupled with measurements obtained by satellite (with a larger time step), in order to spatialise at the farmer's plot scale for example, information reported by the "field IoT" sensor.
As GEVES’s activities are fully in keeping with the objectives of CAPTE², new tools for starting field phenotyping will be soon available on the test networks led by GEVES!
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