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vol.28 issue3DEVELOPMENT AND REPRODUCTION OF PODISUS NIGRISPINUS (HETEROPTERA: PENTATOMIDAE) FED ON HELIOTHIS VIRESCENS (LEPIDOPTERA: NOCTUIDAE) CATERPILLARS author indexsubject indexarticles search
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Idesia (Arica)

On-line version ISSN 0718-3429

Abstract

REYES, José F; ESQUIVEL, Wilson D  and  FRANCO, Américo O. ASSESSMENT OF A PC BASED SYSTEM TO MEASURE SAP FLOW IN HERBACEOUS PLANTS IN REAL TIME. Idesia [online]. 2010, vol.28, n.3, pp.7-16. ISSN 0718-3429.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-34292010000300002.

A system to measure the transpiration of herbaceous plants in real time was designed and evaluated. The proposed system includes a sap flow sensor, an electronic interface card and a computational C++ code. The system uses a transducer based on thermocouples and an interface designed to process the data from the transducer through the parallel port of a personal computer (PC). In order to evaluate the performance of the system, eleven weeks old maize plants (Zea mays L.), growing in a greenhouse were used. The PC based system was calibrated with respect to data from the data logger and evaluated by comparison with results obtained by differential plant weighting. Error of the system to estimate sap was lower than 8%, which is similar to the accuracy of the data logger methods. The evaluated methodology offers a real time possibility to determine water losses due to transpiration and it can be implemented mainly for crops growing in greenhouses to optimize productivity and minimize plant diseases. The PC based method is an option to design a commercial irrigation control system at a relatively low overall cost, since a conventional computer and cheap electronic devices are utilized.

Keywords : Sap flow; plant transpiration; flow transducer; thermocouples.

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