Earlier this month, Plense Technologies was officially founded together with Delft Enterprises. The company will try to market an ultrasound sensor.
Gerard Verbiest, Thijs Bieling, Berend de Klerk, Satadal Dutta and Mark de Kruijff (Delft Enterprises)
Plense is betting on developing “smart, robust sensors that convert crop status into data. ‘Listening’ to the plant with ultrasound sensors. The sensors could replace manual crop interpretation, which is where the techs currently see a barrier to the widespread adoption of high-performance cultivation.
The sensor technology stems from the Plantenna research program. The ultrasound sensor was one of the sensor technologies that emerged from it. Researchers Satadal Dutta and Gerard Verbiest achieved good results with it, wrote a paper on it, and have a patent.
The researchers showed how they could measure the water-carrying ‘arteries’ of plants, the xylem vessels. After a year, master’s students Berend de Klerk and Thijs Bieling joined in. Between July and September 2022, they tested the sensor in the greenhouse at Delphy. They will now, with the help of NWO funding, validate the product in practice and then really market it. At the moment, they are not yet selling any products.
The sensor developers want to do more than just collect data. “We analyze the data and offer insights that allow growers to make informed data-driven decisions.”
Berend and Thijs from Plense could already be seen in the greenhouse on social media late last year. They walked along at Vreugdenhil Young Plants to get a better idea of the market. They watched from breeding to cultivation.
Berend says he is “very grateful” to the parties who helped them get to know the market and were open to sharing their thoughts and opinions with the technicians.
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