2nd annual International Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge


Wageningen University & Research (WUR) and Tencent invite AI and horticultural experts to participate in the 2nd edition of the International Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge in which multidisciplinary teams from around the world will use artificial intelligence to remotely produce vegetables.

2nd annual The goal is to explore how AI can grow food more efficiently and effectively. Findings and breakthroughs from the competition will be converted into algorithms that enable computers to regulate and assist in the automatic cultivation of food.

In the future, more greenhouses will be needed to produce food. Autonomous greenhouses and remote digital farming can help feed more people, increase food security and produce more vegetables with fewer resources such as water and energy. Significant advances are being made in automation, information technology and artificial intelligence (AI), which will help growers to better analyze and process information and make better decisions.

During the first edition of the Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge in 2018, five international teams were challenged to control a greenhouse cucumber production during a four-month period with their AI algorithms. The first edition resulted in a successful benchmark experiment demonstrating that AI algorithms can control greenhouse climate and irrigation remotely. The winning team outperformed the manual growers with 10 years of experience.

The 2nd edition of the International Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge begins this autumn. The goal of this year’s challenge is to produce a cherry tomato crop within six months with high quality, high productivity and high resource efficiency in WUR greenhouses.

Teams will make choices with respect to the control settings in order to control crop production and quality remotely. Teams can also add their own sensors/cameras to generate additional information. Each team will be able to extract data from the greenhouse compartment and couple it to their own machine learning algorithms to decide on the control settings for the next day/period. They will also send the control settings back to the system so it can control the actuators automatically or send instructions for crop handling to reach a pre-defined goal.

Teams must consist of experts with a proven background in different fields such as artificial intelligence, sensor technology, crop physiology and horticultural production. Companies and start-ups are invited as well as scientists and students. Team must include at least three members and at least one team member must be a student.

Registration deadline is 15 July 2019. For more information or to register, visit www.autonomousgreenhouses.com.

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