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NASA Technical Memorandum 2004-21 1533

DEMONSTRATION OF A POROUS TUBE HYDROPONIC SYSTEM TO CONTROL PLANT MOISTURE AND GROWTH

T. W. Dreschel C. R. Hall T. E. Foster
October 2003

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NASA

NASA Technical Memorandum 2004-21 1533

DEMONSTRATION OF A POROUS TUBE HYDROPONIC SYSTEM TO CONTROL PLANT MOISTURE AND GROWTH
T. W. Dreschell C. R. Hall2 T. E. Foste?
2

"NASA The Dynamac Corporation

October 2003

National Aeronautics

and

NASA

Space Administration
John F. Kennedy Space Center

1

-p th h srLKU. Managing nutrient solution chemistry can also control plant pigments. 0 ' 1 d 1 . LED and other innovative lamps as light sources are addressing issues associated with control of the photosynthetically active radiation environment.. biochemical concentrations. For this research we are evaluating configurations of the porous tube plant nutrient delivery system (PTPNDS) and assessing our ability to detect plant responses to the various configurations.lese small differences were not detectable ita the gas-exchange or fluorescence measurements. and T.fT~yPnmPe i n thP m p a m lpaf i r i o t p r ofintpnt k e t i m r e r . plant pigment concentrations. spectral analyses procedures. Today's high quality plant growth chambers can be used to address the atmospheric gas. The ideal test plant growth system would allow for control of the spectral quality and intensity of the light environment. gas-exchange. ~ 1 I I >-I*-. 2 .SJsterns. Mail Code: DYN-2 Kennedy Space Center._ - uIIIbIbIIyba L1lw l l l u u l l luul IvuIyL yvllcuLLc VuC. Accurately controlling these factors in outdoor field studies is difficult.w.. biomass r _ _ . &. ..II CICIaCIIIbI.J L 1 L--I .DEMONSTRATION OF A POROUS TUBE HYDROPONIC SYSTEM TO CONTROL PLANT MOISTURE AND GROWTH T. Dreschel'. toxicology testing. and monitor plant growth and physiological processes. . By accurately controlling the plants growth environment to minimize variance resulting from environmental responses we can begin to more accurately define treatment effects and minimum detectable differences in physiological characteristics as they relate to sampling strategies and procedures. Influencing factors include complex interactions between wavelength dependent absorbing and scattering features from backgrounds as well as canopy biochemical and biophysical constituents. the temperature and humidity of the growth area. the water and nutrient contact with the root system. Hall'. Creation of a reliable simple system for controlling the flow of water and chemicals directly available to plant roots provides tremendous opportunities for plant research in areas such as remote sensing of plant stress. C. and the concentration of gases in the atmosphere.I &I I I . FL 32899 ABSTRACT Accurate remote detection of plant health indicators such as moisture. temperature.. and fluorescence measurement!3 for their aliility to detect small differences in plant water status.CJ.oartitiming. photosynthetic flux. and photosynthetic rates. and leaf moisture of plants can be controlled bv Preciselv manacine the root water potential. A test bed was . tissue culture of plants. ' v u I- . plant biomass production.purvux iuuc uxnno-iogy witn cne intent or evaluating remme sensing me . alter. Spectral analysis was able toI detect n n l l . Foste2 'NASA.c Dniirev. and plant physiology.n t m troitrnent. Early testing of a porous tube plant culture system has indicated that plant biomass production. . . and humidity concerns.-I. Mail Code: YA-E4 and 'Dynamac Corporation.. r _ _ __oeveiepea wnicn utIiiLcu & I .. and other biochemicals in canopies is a major goal in plant research. LvvvcI INTRODUCTION Many types of plant research can benefit from development of technoIogies to preciseIy control.I. Advances in lighting technology such as light-pipe.

Thus there is a Figure 1. Roots grow directly on the surface of the nutrient-supplying porous tubes and are surrounded by an air space contained within an outer root-encompassing barrier (Figure 1).The PTPNDS (Dreschel 1990) was originally designed for NASA for growing plants in the microgravity af space. Dreschel et al. 1994. measuring the effects of hydraulic pressure. 1994). Tsao et al. This has been demonstrated by a series of studies in which the PTPNDS was compared with agar-based and floral foam plant 3 . 1988. Dreschel et al. 1987). 1989a. the delivery of water and dissolved nutrients to roots grown in microgravity must be done in a precise fashion. Berry et al. See Berry and others (E 992) for 8 detailed description of the PTPNDS. 1996) and utilizing the system to grow crop plants in the confines of ground-based spaceflight plant growth unit such as the one patterned afrer the Russian SVET hardware (Chetirkin et al. 1992. To avoid these problems. The PTPNDS utilizes a controlled fluid loop to supply nutrients and water to plant mats growing on a ceramic surface moistened by capillary action. 1989. and root zone volume on plant growth (Dreschel et al. Preliminary studies with the PTPNDS have centered around testing the system with various crop plants (Dreschel et aI. DrescheE et al. 1992) developing physical and mathematical models to describe the operation of the system (Tsao et al. 1992). 1992. plant rhizospheres tend to become anoxic because gravity-mediated convection is nsn-existent. Bubenheiin et al. The PTPNDS has been specifically developed to overcome many of the challenges in providing water and mineral nutrients to the roots of plants in microgravity (Dreschel 1990) and in certain ground systems (Dreschel and Brown 1993). The porous tube technology avoids problems related to a lack of oxygen in the rhizosphere. 1989b) and to investigate the hydrotropic response of plant roots to moisture gradients (Takahashi et al. A Diagram of t k Porous Tube Component of the FTPNDS. The PTPNDS has also been used as a research tool to evaluate the response of plants to varying degrees of water and nutrient stress (Dreschel and Sager 1989. pore size. constant supply af oxygen in the immediate vicinity o f the roots. Peterson et aI. 1989b. In microgravity. Dreschel et al. developing hydraulic pressure control systems for IaboratoryscaIe crop tests (Dreschel 1992).

3 micron -2 10 0 l " l " 4 l " l " 2 6 8 10 S u c t i o n Pressure (inches o w a t e r ) f Figure 2. Of the three systems tested. two regions of the infrared reflectance spectra. A semi-log plot of the water flux rate versus suction pressure (applied water potential) fTsao et al. and biophysical features of vegetation are recognized as important objectives for remote sensing in agriculture. chemicai concentrations. 1992). water status.I TOO nm) and middle. indicating the lowest level of stress (Porterfield 1996). I' O a 0 10. OBJECTIVE Determination of biomass. Tucker 1980) and other plant constituents 4 .0 m i c r o n 0.(700.(1300-3000 nm). Asner 1998). the PTPNDS grown plants produced the lowest amount of ADH in their roots and the highest shoot biomass. Successful algorithm development for feature characterization requires development of a quantitative understanding of complex interactions that occur between photons and the numerous absorbing and scattering components of targets (Bostater et al. have been identified as being especially useful for the detection of vegetation water stress or water content (RippIe 1986.culture systems developed for space flight applications. terrestrial ecology. 1993) have indicated that water flux for various pore sizes differs according to the magnitude of the gravitational force. these wavelength dependent interactions involve tissue optical properties. In remote sensing. and earth system science. 1994. In ground-based studies water flux measurements were made with a series ofgravimetric tests and absorbent material {germination paper) on various pore size tubes (Figure 2). canopy biophysical attributes. Results indicated a dependence of water flux on applied water potential (suction pressure) and pore size. bottom reflectance (soil and litter). photosynthetic rates. Other studies (Dreschel et al.0 micron 2. the near. For plants. and illumination characteristics. In these investigations alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) levels in the roots were used to indicate water-logging (oxygendeprivation) stress.7 micron 0.

Each cart can be independently moved relative to the others.970. Two laboratory-scale peristaltic pumps. a walk-in refrigerator (3 m x 4 m x 2. Instead. Metal-halide lamps provided lthe photosynthetically active radiation for the plants and were hung on a structure that allowed the carts to.Q crn of water pressure. and 2950 nm in response to the OH bond (Grant 1987). This creates a pressure difference beEween the tubes and the standpipe and was used to establish the initial three treatments: near zero pressure. The objective of this study is to investigate the potential for using remote sensing instrumentation. The nutrient solution for each cart was contained in an insulated 80-liter covered container (cooler) and the sdution was pumped to the standpipe using a submersible (magnetically coupled impeller) pump.0 cm of water pressure on the nutrient solution within the porous tubes. -t6. It has been found that water-stress does not directly affect the biochemistry of photosystem TI (Lu and Zhang 1998). Water absorption bands occur at around 760. However. These tubes were connected to a standpipe using a manifold at the upstream end and connected to a peristaltic pump at the downstream end. draw the s o h i o n through each ceramic tube and return it to the reservoir at a rate of nine milliliters per minute. and -32. studies have found that water stress does not affect fluorescence measurements in the dark adapted state (Monje et al. Solution was supplied from the standpipe to the manifold via another one-half inch vinyl hose. per porous tube. 1995). differences in fluorescence should be detected in the dark adapted state. water-stress increases the potential for damage caused by high light intensities. otherwise referred to as photoinhibition (Lu and Zhang 1998). 1994). The entire system was constructed and maintained within a controlled temperature chamber. infrared gas exchange system.51-n). Changes in the curvature or inflection of the reflectance signature in the 970 nm region have been found to have high correlation with water potential and percent moisture of scrub oak leaves (Bostater et al. 1940. starch and nitrogen compounds (Jacquemoud et a!. Chamber temperature was typically 22°C with lights on and 18°C with the lights OKWithin the plant 5 . Under water-stressed conditions. 2 CM in diameter and 80 crn in length were placed on each of three laboratory carts. Lu and Zhang 1998). METHQDS AND MATERIALS Eight porous ceramic tubes. allowing ready ficcess to any rrfthe plants being grown an the cart (Figure 3). lignin. One-half inch vinyl hose carried the solution to lthe standpipe and three-eighths inch vinyl hose carried the overflow firom the standpipe back to the reservoir. or a fluorometer to detect small differences in the water status of plants being grown OR the PTPNDS at varying water potentials. 1450. If photosystem I1 was directly affected. plants are expected to exhibit a decrease in photosynthesis and conductance while experiencing an increase in fluorescence at higher light intensities.such as cellulase. each with four heads. Nutrient soIution was maintained by adding water daily to the reservoir and periodicaIly adding concentrated nutrients to maintain solution conductivity. A bracket system allowed the standpipes to be placed at the level of the porous tubes down to about 40 crn below the tubes. be moved underneath the lights. Organic bonds found in foliar mass exhibit vibrational stretching modes that absorb radiation in these regions of the spectrum. 2001.

Beginning week 3. cv. with the lights on. 2002 with solution flowing through each tube. Photograph of one of three PTPNDS used for the study. Perigee) were grown for a complete life cycle.140 Pa). Humidity was not controlled. canopy.40. Planting was conducted on June 6. Super-dwarf wheat plants (Triticumaestivurn.570 Pa). 32. but was typically about 55 % f 5%. the carts were rotated within the growth chamber each week to ensure consistent lighting for the three carts. and -32 cm of water (-3. Plant height measurements began seven days after planting (DAP) with measurements thereafter being taken on a weekly basis. 6 .8 Pa). The variable nutrient solution pressure. This was used to provide a relatively constant environment for the plants while a series of gas-exchange and fluorescence measurements were conducted.1 cm of water (-0. and 57 DAP. Wheat seeds were planted dry on each of the tubes (approximately 40 seeds per tube) and covered with a section of moistened paper laboratory wipe. from now on to be referred to as applied water potential. -I6 cm of water (-1. the temperature was typically about 25°C. The seed and plants on the porous tubes of the three carts were subjected to applied water potentials of -0. Spectral reflectance as well as fresh and dry weights was measured on five plants taken from each cart at 25. was established at the initiation of the study. A 12-hour photoperiod was used to grow the plants until day 60 when a 24-hour photoperiod was implemented.1 i I - t ': Figure 3.

. After dark adapted measurements were . A least squares linear model was calculated to describe the strength of the relationship between leaf percent moisture and the three band inflection estimator computed from reflectance data. Reflectance was calculated as the ratio of the upuelling to the Afi-trminrwmll.mb 9 ~ I I a . JybvILuI .26.nn v q l i i c e d 11 e f i ~ ~ t m e o c i i r e m p n t E rn l rnillm uw.32. 1990). To assess possible relationships between leaf percent moisture and spectral curvature or inflection a three band inflection ratio (Grew 1980.L ipe.600.llvucluLI. i00. 800.34. k0.00 1 g).ZIIUbJ. Upwelling radiance was measure(1 as the average of30 spectral samples of each leaf.A - n Data collected with the ASD spectrograph were sub-sampled at 5nm intervals to reduce issues associated with correlations between adjacent spectral bands (Demetriades-Shah et al. NE) Q ~ I flag leaves of pPants from each treatment. Measurements of photosynthesis..v. 1994) was computed. stomatal conductance. Lincoln. The . light source and ASD optical probe were held constant to minimize bidirectional influences. The inflection estimator was defined as: where I ( Ais the inflection or curvature estimator centered at band i calculated from the ~ reflectance signature. For each treatment. PhysialogicaI parameters were measured with a LiCos 6406 Portable Photosynthesis System (LiCor. Bostater et al. For this analysis m and n were 9 band steps or about 50 nrn after smoothing. 1990).ul . and 5 5 DAP.. Analysis of variance was used to test for significant differences between inflection values in the regions of highest correlation associated with the three levels of root water potential.. . Correlograms were generated to identify areas of strong correlation between the inflection estimator and leaf percent moisture.39.b. Leaves were dark adaloted for 20 minutes using the LiCor 6400 with the leaf chamber fluorometer attachment. Analyses focused on data from DAP 57.50. a period that demonstrated significant differences in leaf percent moisture for the three applied water potentials. All angles of measurement. Spectral smoothing was utilized to reduce influences of noise and maximize the signal (Demetriades-Shah et al. respectively.6 ~ngsten light source set at a constant output level with a rheostat. 7 . . and fluorescence were taken on one or two plants from each cart I5. . Fluorescence and gas-exchange measurements were made on the dark adapted leaf. plants were then dried at 7U"L for 72 hours and reweighed to determine the pEant dry weight.llclllccl 117pt-e .41. .36. and 0 I rends between the treatments. . Leaf spectral reflectance w a s measured immediately after fresh vveights af the plants were cletermined (Ohaus Analytical Plus Balance.. M and n are forward and backward operators.y.a.- 000.nrr UJI. . Downwelling radiance (as digital number) was estimated using a Spectrdon-white reflectance panel. The Bonferroni painvise mean comparison test was used to test between individual treatment differences. illumination and distances between target leaves. Analyses and data processing were conducted with Systat 9 (SPSS 1999). A simple correlation analysis was run between the spectral reflectance data and the percent moisture to define first order relationships between reflectance values and leaf moisture. flag leaves from five randomly selected plants were used ir1 the spectral measurement s.Spectral data were collected using an Analytical Spectral Devices (ASD) Fieldspec Pro spectrograph (ASD 1999).300.

indicates that the plants in the -0. trends were observed in stomatal conductance when the plants were Iight adapted (Figure 7).0 cm and -32. By DAP 21 height growth in the 0. Plant height growth was statistically different between all three treatments for DAP 7. height.Regular additions of wafer to the reservoirs were recorded to provide a rough estimate of evaporation and water uptake by the plants. This difference was not observed. but no s-'> treatment consistently had higher rates of photosynthesis.1 cm treatment demonstrated a much higher production of tillers at DAP 60 and 69 than did the other two treatments. If a significant difference was found. dry weight. such that 38% and 49% of the stalks were tillers respectively. # tillers.0 cm treatments was greater at DAP 60 than at DAP 69 {EO% rend 2% respectively). however the order of the treatments did not remain the same. I crn treatment were less water use efficient (WUE) than the plants in the other two treatments. Tiller production varied between the three treatments (Figure 53. The -0. This would suggest that conductance of the two stressed treatments should differ considerably. However. approximately 85% germination was observed over the next two days.0 crn treatment had less water added.0 cm treatment. photosynthesis under high light (1 200 pmols m-* was more variable. The number of plants that had produced tillen was counted on DAP 60 to determine differences between treatments. Interestingly. The difference in tiller production between the -1 6. when the -0.1 em treatment was significantly lower than in the other two treatments. No trend in photosynthesis between the treatments was observed (Figure 6 ) . In fact little variation was observed in either respiration or photosynthesis under low Iight (300 pmols rn? s-'}.1 crn and the -1 6. This trend persisted until DAP 69. No trend in plant height growth persisted through the entire study (Figure 4). The -0. analysis of variances parameters (YO were conducted.0 cm treatments. fresh weight. 8 . trends in the amount of water added to the reservoirs were not in agreement with the conductance data (Figure 8). then Games-Howell Post Hoc tests were conducted to determine which treatments differed from the others. 14 and 21. This increase in stomatal conductance without a corresponding increase in photosynthesis. Both the -0.0 cm treatment was significantly lower than the other two treatments by DAP 69.1 cm treatment increased dramatically relative to the other two treatments so that by DAP 69 the height was statistically similar to that of the plants in the -16.1 cm treatment consistently had higher stomata1 conductance than did the other two treatments.0 cm and -32. Unlike photosynthesis. No consistent trend was found in Conductance between the -I 6. In order to determine if the different applied water pressures affected the various growth moisture. The height growth of the -32. RESULTS Following planting of the wheat seed.0 cm trays had more water added to the reservoir late in the experiment where as the -32. etc).

1 -16 -32 Pressure [cmH20) 9 .1 cm H . - 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Days after planting Figure 4.0 cm HO . O -16. 60 0 -0.35 t n n E W 25 - 0 E 0 .) a) 20- D I I 1510 I a i -0.. Measuremmk of plant hebht for the wheat grown at three appIied water potentials on the PTPNDS.

A 1 0 h l f I I 1 I r 0 L Y .

a U cv 0 c 3 rr 0 + 0 m .T T u) u) 9 E 9 E u) c CI 0 0 0 U m 0 m & U 0 . 0 m + 0 . a I I I I 0 7 c9 0 (4 0 0 7 c\! 0 . a + 3 0 Tf 0 0 0 0 3 5 + m a r 1 .

exhibited i the fluorescence measurements.140000 120000 100000 - 80000 60000 40000 20000 0 I b I 0 20 40 60 80 100 No trends hetwmn the three RreerSrnents were. For n exrunpie. 12 . the light harvesting eBdmciw (Figure 10) as we11 as the ma-photochemical quenching (Figure 11) of plants on all t h e treatments were sirnilm during both dmk and light adaptahon.

CI CI C 3 80- 0 75- E c m n 70 - 65 1 I 25 32 40 57 69 Days after planting Figure 9. No significant difference was found hthe Median estimates of the -0.0 cm H. treatments explain a 1wge amount ofttx variayity in iaaeotion estimate PC. Percent leaf moisture of wheat plants grown at three different appIied water potentials on the PTPNDS. Trends between the treatments can be seen in the mean reflectance signatures for the region 750 to 1000 r n during the time frame when significant differews in l d percent moisture were exhibited u.003 mpectivdy).000 and 0.0 cm treatmats (p-a. Interestingly the nbrptian mea centered sound 860 nm.1 cm and -16.0cm HO .inflection paints across the SO0 m near-inhmd region (Figure I2 and Table 1). s cn .p =O. Fg r 13).0 cm txmtmmt had significantly difikmt iriflecth estirnaks t b the -0.1 cm HO .OOO}. is strongly related to Iea€pawnt moisture (Fi re 14).75. ~ 85 r - d # + A -0. -16.1 crn and -1 6.O -32. 13 . when converted from i ue refleetmce to the hfl wtim & W e . The -32.0 cm treatments.

7 () I 7 " '0 E 0 (D 0 I n * 0 0 m 0 cv 0 7 0 Ln I n 0 T 0 .

'E 0 a II i i c) + m 0 rn + 0 0 3 e c + + 2 _c m 0 d- s e cr 0 M h 0 cr) 0 /n c9 0 (v 0 7 z t ' 0 2 0 u? c? 7 0 0 Nb .

O represent a flat line. .25 - .4.. .oo l500 600 .b. 8L1 .7..833. .Y. .7 827. .7.VY53 - I Pearson Correlation Coefficient U. .955 1 0..0.4 838.930. .75 - 0..5753 1 0. . .. .00 -0. Table 1.02 185 0.4.00470 0. Inflection Bands I . Mean inflection estimates of 1 .8. 878. .75 -1 .50 - -0. .- 775. . . . . 0.3JU41 Probability I A n .00281 0. values above 1 .04192 0.0283 1..O are concave down....500.5.. .6 833.9966 1.58545 -0..9. Reflectance Inflection 1000 1100 400 700 800 900 Wavelength (nm) Figure 12. * n-- - I I Mean Inflection Estimate U. .827.053 1 0. measured reflectance and calculated inflection estimates for leaves collected on DAP 57. .I 0. .? --_. 5 n-. .1.1.59977 -0.5. .890...* A A /bV. Correlation between leaf percent moisture. .25 -0.. ..02480 16 .9747 0. Correlation between estimates of inflection and percent leaf moisture for six bands. 8 1 3 .942.686 1 1 -0.936. .884. . . . . ..0181 1 0.883.9 781.7 1373 0.878.. . .

0'42 c 0 40 0. Wavelength (nm) 800 tind 920 m h r l e a w hm. kat^ h f k heuithata fofeuchappbkl w r pmtid.8 800 820 840 860 880 900 920 Figwe 14.36 0. Average reflectance signatures far leaves W a s t e d at DAP 57 for each applied water potential.wc&d at DAP 57 17 .34 800 850 900 950 Wavelength (nm) Figure 13. L 0.9 0.

Yet these differences were detectabIe using spectral altalysis. 1450. atmosphere) was m l y about me-tenth that of an accepted value for field capacity. that oxygendeprivation stress was exhibited. However the cmditicms were such in the early stages of development for the -0. and 2950 nm in response to the OH bond (Grant 1987). In a previous study.970. Instead these plants appeared to be under water-logged conditions early in their life cycle and until the amount of leaf transpiration was sufficient to overcome this condition. the plant roots were oxygen stressed. In this study.1 cm treatment. Pure water absorption bands occur at around 760. Ripple 1986).570 Pa). the near. the small change in mean leaf water content of 5% that occurred between treatments.8 Pa). Therefore it was expected that the -0. This feature could not be detected utilizing standard reflectance data values that displayed RO significant correlations with percent moisture in leaves. changes in the shape of the spectral curve between 790 and 945 nrn displayed strong significant correlations with percent moistwe in the super dwarf wheat plant leaves. (1992) found that 18 .1 cm of water (-.1 cm treatment would exhibit superior growth compared to the other two applied water potentials. in a statistically significant fashion. Bostater et al. plants arc expected t~ exhibit a decrease in photosynthesis and conductance while experiencing an increase in fluorescence ht higher light intensities. Plants grown on the PTPNDS. 1940. (1 994) found that changes in the curvature or inflection of the reflectance signature in the 970 nm region was highly correlated with water potential and percent moisture of scrub oak leaves. -16 cm of water (1. the growth rate of the p1ants accelerated and matched or exceeded the growth rate of the plants grown with the other two applied water potentials (Figures 4 and 5). Under water-stressed conditions. Organic bonds found in foliar mass exhibit vibrational stretching modes that absorb radiation in these regions of the spectrum.6 cm treatment.03. For example. have been identified as being useful for the detection of vegetation water stress or water content (Tucker 1980. have k e n found to exhibit Tower levels of stress due to oxygen deprivation in the rhizosphere (Porterfield 1996).140 Pa). and -32 cm of water (3. It was evident after the first week post planting that this was not the case. when compared to other growth techniques. with the plants on the -1 6. the resultant yield was decreased. with a decrease in applied water potential (becoming more negative). The amount ofapplied water potential that the roots were exposed to was small when compared to commonly accepted field capacity values (soil at near water saturation) of around -1J3 atmosphere.DISCUSSION The porous tube nutrient delivery system performed well and wheat plants were cultured using three different applied water potentials in the rhizosphere. When the leaf transpiration rates were sufficient.(1 300-3000 nm).0 cm treatment growing faster and with a higher moisture content and fresh weight than their counterparts on the -32. Berry et al. An especially encouraging result was the ability to detect. Dreschel et al. The ather two treatments grew as anticipated. ( I 990) found that wheat plants grown to maturity under three different water potentials demonstrated differences in yield relative to the water potential. they were not detected in the gas-exchange or fluorescence measurements. -0. Although these small differences in leaf water content were detected in the spectral analysis. Even the largest of our three applied water potentials (-32 cm of water = -0.(700-1 300 nm) and middle. Two regions of the infrared reflectance spectra.

the expected trends were not observed for most parameters. Technician support was provided by Caroline Peterson and Max Salganic through the NASA Spaceflight and Life Sciences Training Program. The plants on the -0. and development.wheat plants grown under various applied water potentials on the PTPNDS demonstrated differences in net carbon dioxide uptake and water use efficiency. this indicates that plants on the -0. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This work was conducted under NASA contract NAS10-I2 I80 and the Life Sciences Services Contract at Kennedy Space Center. However. Remote Sens. and yet there was a measurable effect on plant moisture content. The most probable reason for the discrepancy between the expected and observed results is that the water potentials applied using the PTPNDS were not sufficient to induce severe water-stress in this species. G.cv.0 cm tray were expected to have the lowest rates of photosynthesis and conductance. 19 . cv. Varying this water potential was found to impact the growth and development of the plants and altered the water content of the leaves. REFERENCES Asner. for his support and continued encouragement. The difference in water content was detectable using spectral analysis.8 and -2. Biophysical and biochemical sources of variability in canopy reflectance. Environ. thus exhibiting higher photosynthesis and conductance while having the least amount of non-photochemical quenching. Special thanks to DGWilliam Knott 111. However there is still a great deal of work to be done to develop robust algorithms or methods for precisely estimating plant biochemical and biophysical properties utilizing remote sensing approaches. The -0. Lu and Zhang (1 998) found that a cultivar of wheat (Triticumuestivium L. CONCLUSIONS The rkizospheric water potential of super dwarf wheat plants (Triticum aestivum.1 Mpa) exhibited lower light harvesting efficiencies (Fv’/Frn’) as well as increases in non-photochemical quenching (qN). growth. no distinguishable trends were found for the parameters. with the exception of conductance. Senior Scientist at Kennedy Space Center. 1998. I cm tray consistently had the highest conductance of the three treatments. The most severely stressed plants (-1. The applied water potentials used in this study are small when compared to field capacity values reported in the literature. Since photosynthesis was similar between all treatments. However in most cases. while exhibited high levels of non-photochemical quenching particularly at high light intensities. The NASA Summer High School Apprenticeship Research Program and the Brevard County Executive Intern Program at Titusville High School. in this study. 64:234-253. Perigee) was maintained at three different pressures using the Porous Tube Plant Nutrient Delivery System. but was too small for gas-exchange or fluorescence measurements to detect. P. Shannong 229) when exposed to high light it was only the more severely water-stressed plants that exhibited a difference in measures of fluorescence.1 cm tray were expected to be the least water stress.1 cm tray were the least water-use efficient. The plants on the -32.

. R. C . G. Dreschel.). T. 1990. J. C . Dreschel. T. C.. 1989a. Wheeler. gas exchange. Wheeler. Paper #93-4007 presented at the American Society of Agricultural Engineers. T. C . ASGSB Bulletin 4:5 1 (abstr. NASA Tech Briefs 16:1 13114. Sager. Physical testing for the Microgravity Plant Nutrient Experiment. S .. Steven. A. A. Dreschel. M. C. W. 1992. W E T . Sager. D. T. Chetirkin. Sager. Sager. J. Soil Science 153:442-450. FL. R. Brown.. and W. in. T. M. and J. 1994. Comparison of plant growth in a tubular membrane hydroponic system with that in conventional hydroponic culture. 1989b. and J. Wheeler. D. Washington. Goldstein. M. R. Knott. R. 1987. 1990. W. and nutrient response to a long term constant water deficit. 20 . Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems: CELSS '89 Workshop. Mimeogr. W. 1992. C. W.. M. W. 1989. ASGSB Bulletin 8:37-38 (abstr.. Dreschel.M. R... 1992. 1988. C. Porous tube plant nutrient delivery system development: A device for nutrient delivery in microgravity. in Mimeogr. J. Brown. Knott. W. Ames Research Center. R. C. T.. T. Factors affecting plant growth in membrane nutrient delivery. International Symposium on Spectral Sensing Research. and R. C. W.M (CBET-MI): Evaluation of a ground-based version of a Russian plant growth chamber.. IL. Water conserving plant-growth system. C . 1994.. Dreschel. W. and W. Mitchell. HortScience 22:75 (abstr. Demetriades-Shah. T. C. J. San Diego. H. Control of water and nutrients using a porous tube: a method for growing plants in space. ASGSB Bulletin 2:37-38 (abstr. R. NASA Tech Briefs 17:89-90. C. W. P. T. M. W. Plant nutrient delivery system having a porous tubular member. Sager. Bostater. and C. 33:55-64. Dreschel. T. W. M. W. Development of a porous tube plant nutrient delivery system for the space shuttle middeck locker plant growth unit. S. T. S. V. M. J. HortScience 24:944-947. C. Rebmann. J. Hinkle. T. Chicago. Hall. T. Brown. Status of porous tube plant growth unit research. W. Knott. Dreschel. Munsey. K. and W. Dreschel. M. Sager. MacElroy. Brawn. Pages 387-402 in R. L. and Y . W. Carlson.. 1994. Dreschel. J. 1993. and W. Sager. Monitoring and controlling hydroponic flow. Wheeler.. CA. W. Plant growth in a porous tube nutrient delivery system: the effects of pressure and pore size on productivity.. 1993. D. M. F. Berkovitch. A summary of porous tube nutrient delivery system investigations from 1985-1991. and M. Wheeler. Gomez. D. R. C. W. H. M. Knott. C. T. editor. L. Knott. Piastuch. Bubenheim. 1990. Dreschel. W. B. Dreschel. Dreschel. Sager. D. Knott. Clark. Wells. Moffett Field. Environ. T. editor. and W. Anderson. High resolution derivative spectra in remote sensing. Dreschel. M.). United States Patent and Trademark Office.). Paper #88-4524 presented to the American Society of Agricultural Engineers. NASA Technical Memorandum # 107546 The National Aeronautics and Space Administration. CA. W. Remote Sens. Provancha. C. Vieglais. Dreschel. W. J.Berry. Advances in Space Research 14:47-5 1. Hinkle.). and W. and C. C . Temporal measurements of high resolution spectral signatures of plants and reIationships indicating water status. S. ipl R. A. C . Hinkle. C. Water relations. Kennedy Space Center. and R.

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Demonstration of e p o r o u ~tube hydroponic a p t e m to contro: plant moirrture a d growth I NAS10-02-001 T. porous tube. Hall2. photosynthesis. pouter 2 -corporation ONSORING I MONITORIN iENCY AEPORT HUMBER I Wheat p l m t a . T. spectral analysis. fluorescence . Dreschal'J C.

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