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Plasma agriculture

Obtaining high yields in agricultural production starts with planting seeds that rapidly germinate in high percentages after a minimal delay while producing robust plants. AUXOWAY proposes cold plasma technology as a green alternative to conventional fertilizers in agriculture to improve yields, increase the size and robustness of plants, and reduce (or eliminate) the need for pesticides. Our plasma processes address also final products, treatments of food and its packaging.

Seeds

Maintaining seeds quality, procurement and diversity are major challenges routinely addressed through priming processes which consist into imbibing seeds at a controlled temperature and seed moisture content. This partial hydration is achieved to initiate the germination processes without completing it, so that once seeds are about to be sowed by end-users, they can germinate faster, more easily and uniformly.

Several types of priming processes are already worldwide utilized by seed companies, especially hydropriming (seeds soaked in water), osmopriming (seeds soaked in osmotic solutions like polyethylene glycol, urea, KNO3) and halopriming (seeds soaked in salt solutions). All these techniques are engineered to improve seed germination performances as well as crop yields. Although all effective, these techniques face the same limitation which is their processing duration, typically ranging from ten to a hundred hours. Moreover, several technical steps like desiccation may be necessary, hence prolongating the process of several hours and requiring additional manpower. Finally, these conventional approaches do not necessarily fit into a logic of sustainable development and their economic costs remain non-negligible.

The exploration of disruptive priming technologies must be envisioned to meet the nutritional needs of a growing world population in a context marked by global warming and the need to preserve the environment. From this outlook, dry atmospheric plasma primings appear as an emerging approach in improving germination indicators (vigor, homogeneity, germination, …), growth parameters (sugar content, nutritive contents, roots dry weight, stems lengths, …) while taking into account environmental parameters (pathogens loads, CO2 footprint, no toxic chemical residue, …). Dry Atmospheric plasma primings can be designed to stimulate the germinative properties of the seeds as well as seedlings growth parameters without the need to go through liquids or long duration treatments.

Seedlings & plants

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