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Mobile Microscope Identifies Disease

Gil Gullickson 10/08/2013 @ 10:48am Crops Technology Editor for Successful Farming magazine/Agriculture.com

If you’re ever been stumped about what crop disease you’re viewing while scouting your fields, a wireless hand-held mobile microscope may enable you to obtain a quick diagnosis, say BASF officials.

The technology was demonstrated this week at BASF’s annual press conference in Limburgerhof, Germany. It was launched in Brazil last August, and will be tested in the United States next year.

Here’s how it works. The farmer or crop scout photographs a leaf from the plant in question using the wireless hand-held mobile microscope. The photo is then sent to a database in a BASF library or to an expert team for further analysis.

The photo is then categorized and saved to a GIS-enabled map. Information regarding the malady is then conveyed back to the farmer or crop scout.

“It’s a way to capture information in the field,” says Elmar Groiss, global head of information technology for BASF’s crop protection division.

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