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Open AccessArticle

Performance Assessment of Thermal Infrared Cameras of Different Resolutions to Estimate Tree Water Status from Two Cherry Cultivars: An Alternative to Midday Stem Water Potential and Stomatal Conductance

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Departamento de Ciencias Agrarias, Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias y Forestales, Universidad Católica del Maule, Curicó 3340000, Chile
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Research and Extension Center for Irrigation and Agroclimatology (CITRA) and Research Program on Adaptation of Agriculture to Climate Change (A2C2), Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Universidad de Talca, Talca 3460000, Chile
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Programa de Magíster en Hortofruticultura, Universidad de Talca, Talca 3460000, Chile
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Departamento de Ciencias Forestales, Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias y Forestales, Universidad Católica del Maule, Talca 3460000, Chile
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Instituto de Bosques y Sociedad, Facultad de Ciencias Forestales y Recursos Naturales, Universidad Austral de Chile, Campus Isla Teja, Valdivia 5090000, Chile
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Laboratory of Technological Research in Pattern Recognition (LITRP), Faculty of Engineering Science, Universidad Católica del Maule, Talca 3480112, Chile
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Digital Agriculture, Food and Wine Group, School of Agriculture and Food, Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2020, 20(12), 3596; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123596
Received: 16 May 2020 / Revised: 16 June 2020 / Accepted: 23 June 2020 / Published: 25 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Remote Sensors)
The midday stem water potential (Ψs) and stomatal conductance (gs) have been traditionally used to monitor the water status of cherry trees (Prunus avium L.). Due to the complexity of direct measurement, the use of infrared thermography has been proposed as an alternative. This study compares Ψs and gs against crop water stress indexes (CWSI) calculated from thermal infrared (TIR) data from high-resolution (HR) and low-resolution (LR) cameras for two cherry tree cultivars: ‘Regina’ and ‘Sweetheart’. For this purpose, a water stress–recovery cycle experiment was carried out at the post-harvest period in a commercial drip-irrigated cherry tree orchard under three irrigation treatments based on Ψs levels. The water status of trees was measured weekly using Ψs, gs, and compared to CWSIs, computed from both thermal cameras. Results showed that the accuracy in the estimation of CWSIs was not statistically significant when comparing both cameras for the representation of Ψs and gs in both cultivars. The performance of all evaluated physiological indicators presented similar trends for both cultivars, and the averaged differences between CWSI’s from both cameras were 11 ± 0.27%. However, these CWSI’s were not able to detect differences among irrigation treatments as compared to Ψs and gs. View Full-Text
Keywords: water relations; infrared thermography; camera resolution; crop water stress index; computer vision water relations; infrared thermography; camera resolution; crop water stress index; computer vision
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Carrasco-Benavides, M.; Antunez-Quilobrán, J.; Baffico-Hernández, A.; Ávila-Sánchez, C.; Ortega-Farías, S.; Espinoza, S.; Gajardo, J.; Mora, M.; Fuentes, S. Performance Assessment of Thermal Infrared Cameras of Different Resolutions to Estimate Tree Water Status from Two Cherry Cultivars: An Alternative to Midday Stem Water Potential and Stomatal Conductance. Sensors 2020, 20, 3596.

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