The study of the dynamic responses of plants to short-term environmental changes is becoming increasingly important in basic plant science, phenotyping, breeding, crop management, and modelling. These short-term variations are crucial in plant adaptation to new environments and, consequently, in plant fitness and productivity. Scalable, versatile, accurate, and low-cost data-logging solutions are necessary to advance these fields and complement existing sensing platforms such as high-throughput phenotyping. However, current data logging and sensing platforms do not meet the requirements to monitor these responses. Therefore, a new modular data logging platform was designed, named Gloxinia. Different sensor boards are interconnected depending upon the needs, with the potential to scale to hundreds of sensors in a distributed sensor system. To demonstrate the architecture, two sensor boards were designed—one for single-ended measurements and one for lock-in amplifier based measurements, named Sylvatica and Planalta, respectively. To evaluate the performance of the system in small setups, a small-scale trial was conducted in a growth chamber. Expected plant dynamics were successfully captured, indicating proper operation of the system. Though a large scale trial was not performed, we expect the system to scale very well to larger setups. Additionally, the platform is open-source, enabling other users to easily build upon our work and perform application-specific optimisations.
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