Technical Approach

 The PREMIVM strategy is building around the following thematic work packages (WP):


WP1 - Development of correlation library


Study the relationship between chlorophyll and nitrogen content in vine leaves and nitrogen, sugars and polyphenols in grape ripening, extending knowledge in the application of fluorescence and reflectance principles for a better understanding of plant and fruit physiology in vineyards. Organic acids and pH will also be included in the ripening profiles in order to study the potential to extend the library to other parameters in future developments beyond the scope of this project.

- To build an imaging and spectral fluorescence and reflectance characterization library specific for vineyards, using different F&R spectroscopies, analysing 2000 samples of 10 berry varieties, and vine leaves collected during véraison (fruit ripening stage).

- To chemically characterize all samples, i.e. quantification of polyphenols, sugars, chlorophyll, acidity, pH and nitrogen using 5 different reference methods.

- To pair F&R data with reference data and implement a feature selection approach using a neural a network methodology to create robust correlation algorithms (r2>0.75; P<0.01).

WP2 - Development of optical transducer


- To develop a novel miniaturized optical system capable of acquiring non-invasively full spectrums of fluorescence emission and reflectance from grapes and leaves,

- To investigate the optimal excitation and emission wavelengths for fluorescence and reflectance to measure directly the chlorophyll, polyphenols, sugars and nitrogen content in berries and leaves

- To optimize correlation between these optical signals and chlorophyll, polyphenols, sugars and nitrogen content in berries and leaves in vivo, and thus to demonstrate that this measurements can effectively provide reporter signals of plant and fruit physiological condition, specific for the ripeness and vigour information winegrowers require from their vineyard.

The novel miniaturized optical system will: (a) perform outdoor active sensing measurements under any light conditions, on single leave/shot with fast acquisition time (<1-3 s); (b) perform reliable measurements at a specific distance from sample (>2 cm) providing a significant measurable area (>2 cm diameter); (c) perform simultaneous measurements of several optical signatures non-invasively, in real-time and with no preparation of sample.

The novel miniaturized optical system will use multiple wavelength excitations – UV and visible for fluorescence and 350-1500 (max) nm for reflectance. Fluorescence and reflectance signals will be detected in range 400-1500(max) nm

- To have a low energy consumption: peak <500 mA, measure mode 35 mA.

- To evaluate the performance of the optical system in laboratory against reference methods: Accuracy, Precision, Specificity, Limit of detection, Limit of quantification, Linearity, Range, Ruggedness, Robustness. Variables & Ranges to achieve: Sugars (30-300 g/l); Phenols (0.1-1.0 g/l); Nitrogen (2.0-3.0 % w/w) ; Chlorophyll (60.0-5.0 µg/cm2).

WP3 - Development of housing & accessories

- To perform outdoor geopositioning in a dense foliage environment with an accuracy <10 m (integrated GPS module + antenna)
- To enable easy interface with the device through a 4.3” TFT resistive touch screen (resolution 480x272, brightness 290 cd/m2)
- To store all acquired data in a 256Mb internal memory with a capacity for 2 million multiparametric data entries and easily interface a PC with a USB port for data transfer
- To have suitable power autonomy of at least 12 hours with a Li-ion rechargeable battery
- To have a compact and robust final design (< 3kg, operation at 8-55ºC; resistant to water, dust, grease and chemicals).

WP4 - Development of management software

- To develop the user-friendly management software for handling ripeness data and support the winegrower. Two versions of the application will be released as two different profiles of users have been envisaged. On one side, a standalone application will be developed for users that want to store the data in their own computer, this application will not allow the user to access remotely to the stored information and, according to that, will not require internet connection. On the other hand, a web layer will be also developed. This web application will be fed with information sent from the computer in which the device will be connected by a USB connection. In this case, an internet connection will be required and the application will allow remote access. The software modules in charge of receiving information from the device, processing it, database access and correlation modules will be shared by both applications. The software modules to be developed include:
- To develop an input data processor, data-access module and the related database that automatically receive and process the geospatial data transferred from the sensor.
- To implement the correlation algorithms that through a graphical representation tools bundle will process the stored data to automatically generate field reports and statistics.
- To make field tests with geopositioning and dummy data to debug the software
- To develop the graphical user interface that will allow the winegrower to easily and intuitively use the software as a standalone application or via web.

WP5 - Integration of the prototype

- To integrate the final system to achieve a full working device with a predicted final price of €2500 for volume production.
- To evaluate the performance of the system in laboratory trials.

WP6 - Demonstration of the prototype

To use the developed prototype for a better understanding of fruit ripeness, influence of plant vigour and other factors (irrigation, fertilizers, weather, etc.), and the relation between the photosynthetic machinery and cultivar evolution in the vineyard. The information provided by PREMIVM will be evaluated on the extent of which it can aid in understanding the dynamics of viticulture fields and the interconnectivity with the surrounding environment, as well as the mutual impacts. The functionality of the prototype will be extended to study how grape variety/terroir combinations and micromanagement of local differences in the vineyard can positively influence wine production and define the production of differentiated wines within the same vineyard.
- To perform field trials with PREMIVM in partner’s vineyards during the entire ripening stage (July, August and September +/- 1 month) and compare the performance of the prototype against the current analytical tools implemented by each winegrower.
- To demonstrate how PREMIVUM can provide useful information, with a performance comparable to standard laboratory F&R techniques and equivalent to extensive and complex laboratory analysis using reference analytical methods.To demonstrate the usefulness and functionality of the prototype in field tests. These tests will demonstrate the capacity to be easily installed in vineyards, to autonomously communicate data and generate valid ripeness information.

WP7 - Preparing for exploitation

To design, prepare, test and deliver comprehensive training with well prepared training material, in order to ensure assimilation of Foreground by the SMEs. To ensure that non-confidential information about the PREMIVM project and its results is disseminated to a wide and relevant audience to maximise impact.
To facilitate the take-up of results by the SMEs, in particular, by ensuring an adequate transfer of the results through the Foreground management system (cfr. section B3.2), promoting foreground protection by IPR and management activities, as well as defining a business plan, in order to: a) Support participating SMEs in protecting and using the research results to their best advantage and b) Exploit the results and increase the competitiveness of the SME participants.

WP8 - Consortium management

To review and assess compliance by the partners and subcontracted RTD performers with their contractual obligations under the project
To ensure that all aspects of the EC requirements for communication and reporting are met and to process any recommendations made by EC reviewers.
To prepare and execute Consortium meetings and to process the outcome of the meetings
To update the Consortium Agreement, if and where necessary.

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The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013 managed by REA-Research Executive Agency under grant agreement n° 262011

FP7 Programme
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