Prof. Dr. Dag Heinemann

Current bioeconomic strategies and increased efforts towards sustainability require an increasing technologisation of biological production processes, plant breeding and plant production. The working group Phytophotonics is therefore dedicated to research and application of optical technologies in plant sciences.

Within the scope of optical phytomonitoring, different plant parameters are recorded contact-free in order to determine the condition of the plants and to investigate their interaction with external parameters. In addition, optical manipulation methods allow targeted ablation or modification of plant tissue, for example to investigate regeneration processes or the development of disorder phenomena, such as russeting of pome fruit.

With this interdisciplinary field of research, the group operates at the interface between plant sciences, physics and engineering.


Development of a Model System for Laser-Based Induction of Cracks in the Cuticle

The cuticle is a waxy layer on numerous plant components exposed to the air. Among other things, it serves to regulate water losses. On apples, the stability of the cuticle is an essential criterion for maintaining quality: the growth of apples causes considerable tensile stress on the cuticle, which can lead to the development of microcracks. Along these microcracks, rusting occurs, which leads to a reduction in the fruit.

In close cooperation with the AG Knoche of the Institute for Horticultural Production Systems we are investigating the possibility of establishing a laser-based system for the in vitro generation of micro cracks. This would enable the systematic investigation of the interrelationships between microcrack propagation, water losses and, in perspective, russeting and thus provide the basis for future strategies to ensure fruit quality.

Bachelor und Master-Arbeiten

We offer Bachelor and Master theses in the exciting field of phytophotonics. Please contact us for information on Bachelor and Master theses.