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Protected Horticulture and Plant Factory Laboratory

Research

  1. 1) Greenhouse crop production and utilization of agricultural materials
    Protected horticulture enables to make a stable production of horticultural crops with high yield and quality because it provides better environmental conditions to the crops than open field. In addition, production of high-valued crops such as functional crops is available by understanding their growth characteristics. For this purpose, soilless culture which requires nutrient management and utilization of agricultural materials is an essential technology. Currently open-loop soilless culture is used, however closed-loop soilless culture should be required for environmental-sound cultivation. In our laboratory, the researches on 1) efficient production of horticultural as well as functional crops, 2) optimum control of water and nutrients in recycled soilless culture, and 3) application of agricultural materials to advanced crop production systems have been recently conducted.
  2. 2) Plant factory and various plant production systems
    Plant factory is a factory-style plant production system that can make year-round, planned production, yield and quality control of crops by using environmental control. Plant factory is classified into the two types with artificial lights and natural light. Required technologies for system development are system design, multi-layer solid cultivation, utilization of artificial and natural lights, lighting, and integrated control, while those for crop production are species selection, light intensity-quality, environment control, and crop quality. Besides, various plant production methods such as vertical farming, space farming, plant production in closed ecosystem are being developed. In our laboratory, the researches on 1) core and 2) applied technologies of the plant factories with artificial and natural lights, and 3) various plant production systems have been recently conducted.
  3. 3) Plant environment control, modelling and IT convergence
    Plant environment control enables to make the best use of genetic traits of crops with satisfying cultivation goals based on optimization theory. For successful environment control, 1) selection of environment factors, 2) quantification between environment factors and plant growth, and 3) development of environment control methods are required. For this process, quantification should be conducted by modelling, and IT convergence is subsquent option for practical and industrialized purposes. In our laboratory, the researches on 1) measurement of environment, plant growth, and bio-information, 2) control of aerial and root-zone environments, 3) modelling of plant growth and photosynthetic, water and nutrient uptake, transpiration and irrigation, and 4) standardized crop database for environment control S/W have beeb recently conducted.

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