International Studies & Programs

PhotosynQ: A Distributed Agricultural Sensor Network for Improving Agriculture in Africa

With its handheld sensor and cloud-based data-aggregating platform, the long-term goal of PhotosynQ is to enable local scientists, breeders and citizens to improve the productivity and security of crops by giving them access to advanced plant phenotyping, analytics and communications tools.


Project Implementer: David M. Kramer, Hannah Distinguished Professor Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Michigan State University.

The long-term goal of PhotosynQ is to enable local scientists, breeders and citizens to improve the productivity and security of crops by giving them access to advanced plant phenotyping, analytics and communications tools. The work focuses specifically on testing the utility of a sophisticated but inexpensive hand-held sensor called MultispeQ together with the online data and communications platform called PhotosynQ. The project will engage two established breeding programs in East Africa with distinct needs and challenges. The success of the technology and the community-building tools will be shown by its ability to usefully predict field outcomes at an early stage of plant development and, in the long run, to enable global community-based education, research and breeding programs.