An Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge experiment dedicated to the cultivation of cucumbers in fully automated greenhouses is carried out in the Dutch province of Gelderland. World-famous companies-giants like Microsoft, Intel, and many others are taking part in the experiment, writes “Agro-Center”.
The experiment is being carried out on the territory of the University of Wageningen. It started in September and will end in December. All companies-participants are involved in the cultivation of cucumbers. Cucumbers were chosen for the experiment due to the large number of approaches to their cultivation, including automated ones.
Participation in the experiment is minimized. They go to the greenhouses only to harvest cucumbers and remove damaged leaves if there are any. All the parameters of the greenhouse are controlled entirely by artificial intelligence. In particular, an algorithm analyzes data from sensors and manages artificial light, ventilation, irrigation, the introduction of nutritional substances, temperature and other indicators that affect the growth of cucumbers.
“It’s not about a robot being able to cut a cucumber and package it. The idea behind smart greenhouses is that they, being completely autonomous, can grow produce by themselves, not just help people harvest crops,”
said David Wallerstein, a top manager at Tencent.
This project is funded by the Tencent Exploration Team, which invests in promising agricultural projects that address global problems at Wageningen University (Wageningen University & Research, WUR).
It will be known in December what method of growing cucumbers is most effective.