Tree Computer

The Tree Computer is a robotic greenhouse built to explore plant stress, health, longevity, and productivity across a wide range of crops. 

By modulating photosynthetic intensityspectral rangewind speednutrient levels, soil and ambient temperatures, and moisture content,the Tree Computer can replicate growing conditions around the globe, from the tundra to the tropics

Weather extremes reveal plant tolerances, which in turn reveal crop models. By recreating weather patterns, from the past, present, or future, the volatile conditions of global climate change can be studied in close detail. The result? Tree Computer matches "right" crop with "right" place, in a process  called "Climate Prospecting."

With completely custom, completely programmable light fixtures, temperature controls, humidity levels, and soil conditions, the Tree Computer is an unmanned device, link-able to any weather station on Earth. Unlike anything in its class, the Tree Computer provides minute-to-minute, realistic, dynamic, and continuously variable weather

By simulating extreme cold, to temperatures of -36°C, the Tree Computer reveals the death rate (or LT%) for buds that might otherwise bear fruit. By studying various combinations of extreme or mild light, temperature, and humidity levels, and by employing various statistical techniques, the Tree Computer is able to assign relative importance to crop management  strategies like shade-netting, misting, and land selection. 

Research Topics