Automated machine vision sensing of plant structural parameters

McCarthy, C. L. and Hancock, Nigel and Raine, Steven R. (2007) Automated machine vision sensing of plant structural parameters. In: Biological Sensorics 2007: Critical Technologies for Future Biosystems, 15-17 June 2007, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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[Abstract]: Automated sensing of crop water stress is required to provide real-time variable-rate irrigation control that responds to spatial and temporal variability of plant water needs. Plant structural parameters such as internode length in cotton (i.e. the distance between successive main stem branches) are recognised as significant indicators of water stress level. This paper demonstrates the successful automatic identification of nodes and measurement of internode lengths.

A moving in-field camera enclosure involving plant contact was trialed in the (Australian) 2005/06 cotton growing season. The enclosure continuously traversed the crop canopy, collecting video footage of the cotton plants. The enclosure design utilises the natural flexibility of the growing crop to force (non-destructively) the plant’s main stem onto a fixed object plane which enables the direct measurement of geometric dimensions without the need for stereo vision. Plant features are discriminated via processing of successive images to identify the main stem and branches, and hence stem-branch junctions (‘nodes’) are located. After confirmation that the plant structure is in the required object plane (by comparison of adjacent frames), the measurements of internode lengths are calculated. From fourteen sequences of images, with typically fifty images per sequence, main stem identification has been achieved in up to 88% of frames, and internode lengths have been measured with standard errors of 6% via automatic image processing and 3% via manual identification of nodes.

It is also demonstrated by analysis of the computational requirements that the necessary image processing can be undertaken in real-time. It is therefore concluded that on-the-go measurement of
plant structural parameters is feasible and may be implemented at relatively low cost.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - No Department (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - No Department (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 11 May 2010 06:26
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2013 03:44
Uncontrolled Keywords: algorithms; foliage; geometry; image processing; real-time system
Fields of Research (2008): 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0799 Other Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 079901 Agricultural Hydrology (Drainage, Flooding, Irrigation, Quality, etc.)
09 Engineering > 0999 Other Engineering > 099901 Agricultural Engineering
06 Biological Sciences > 0607 Plant Biology > 060799 Plant Biology not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3002 Agriculture, land and farm management > 300201 Agricultural hydrology
40 ENGINEERING > 4099 Other engineering > 409901 Agricultural engineering
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3108 Plant biology > 310899 Plant biology not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): B Economic Development > 82 Plant Production and Plant Primary Products > 8203 Industrial Crops > 820301 Cotton

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