The laboratory enables the cultivation of plants under precisely adjustable and measurable abiotic conditions, i.e. excluding the influence of the external environment. For this, growth chambers are used in which the temperature, relative air humidity, CO2 concentration, as well as the intensity and spectral composition of light (blue, red, far-red) can be set independently.
Each of these parameters can have an individual course over time. It is possible to set, for example, arbitrary curves of the lighting mode (gradual increase and decrease of intensity, imitating dawn and dusk), different temperature and humidity regimes, and thus simulate different climate scenarios and study the effect of stressful conditions on the plant and its interaction with, for example, herbivorous insects. The height of 2 m and volume of 2.8 m3 of each of the six growth chambers allows cultivation of a large number of seedlings, including offshoots of woody plants. Control and checking of parameters, including data download, is mediated by a touch panel as well as through remote access.
In addition to storing data on adjustable climatic factors (temperature, humidity, CO2 concentration) and lighting, each growth chamber is equipped with a FluorPen sensor for manual and automatic fluorescence measurement. Soil moisture in pots with cultivated plants can be measured with a high-precision sensor with TDR technology. The advantage is the non-invasiveness of the measurement, when the sensor is inserted into a special tube permanently installed in a plant pot. There is no soil penetration and potential mechanical damage to the root system, as is the case with conventional penetration hygrometers.