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Last update: May 2021

Menu Institutions

SPS - Saclay Plant Sciences

2 new robots in the Phenoscope

Plant Observatory Platform in Versailles

In 2014, the Plant Observatory Phenoscope platform (Inra Versailles-Grignon research center) bought two new phenotyping robots. These machines, currently under test, will be available soon for new research projects.

The Phenoscope platform already owns two similar robots. The use of such robots has been validated within the framework of a European project (ERC:  European Research Council) which was coordinated by Olivier Loudet, research director in quantitative genetics at the Institut Jean-Pierre Bourgin (IJPB).  The aim of this project was to study natural variability in Arabidopsis thaliana.

Phenoscope from Labex SPS on Vimeo.

Operating principle of the robot

These robots are used for high throughput phenotyping. Plant growth can be studied without the usual environmental constraints. Indeed, in regular greenhouses, temperature for example can change with seasons or position.

Plants with different genotypes are grown on the robot, always in motion, ensuring the same conditions for all of them (light, water and temperature). The study of their phenotype related to their genotype allows Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs) to be mapped.

Within 21 days, more than 700 Arabidopsis thaliana plants can be grown on one robot to the flowering stage.

Measuring leaf growth

Once a day, a camera takes a picture of each plant and measures the rosette area.

Croissance foliaire

The system is able to record size and to establish a growth curve for each plant.

Infrared image analysis

Pictures are taken by an infrared camera, then the color variations are analyzed using software and the leaf temperatures deduced.

Analyse d'image Infra-rouge

For more information, visit the Plant Observatory Website.