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Crop Loss Combatting is More Effective with New AI Solution

TL;DR

  • Dong Xu’s team uses AI to make safe fungicides that break down naturally, aiming to save crops like soybeans and corn. 
  • Their work, supported by Mizzou’s tech hub, could replace harmful pesticides. 
  • This new approach promises to protect food supplies and the environment by stopping plant diseases in a sustainable way.

Farmers face a daunting challenge each year as plant diseases claim a staggering 125 million tons of vital crops like soybeans, corn, and wheat in North America, leading to a financial blow of around $220 billion. In a bold move to tackle this issue, a team led by Mizzou’s own Dong Xu is stepping up with an innovative solution that harnesses the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to develop safer, biodegradable fungicides.

AI protect crops

Dong Xu, a noted figure in electrical engineering and computer science, is at the helm of this project, alongside Gary Stacey, a fellow distinguished professor from the College of Agriculture. They are not alone in their quest; a partner from the University of Nebraska is contributing their expertise. Together, they are on a mission to craft biomolecules through computational models—molecules designed to take down fungal invaders that plague our crops.

This high-tech approach uses a blend of biomolecular modeling and AI techniques. The process starts with a digital blueprint. These initial models are then tested by the team in various experiments to see how they fare against fungal foes. Based on real-world data, Xu’s team refines their designs, aiming for higher efficiency.

The path to green solutions

What sets this initiative apart is its commitment to eco-friendliness. The fungicides being developed promise to be non-toxic and biodegradable. This means they break down naturally, avoiding harm to our planet—a stark contrast to traditional chemical treatments.

The project has been in the works for over a year and recently received a financial boost from Mizzou’s Technology, Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Hub. It also gains support from the Ag-celerator for Agricultural Technologies, showcasing the broad backing for this green innovation.

The road ahead

The goal is not just to find a temporary fix but to establish a new standard in fighting plant diseases. This method could revolutionize how we protect crops, potentially extending to fight insect damage without resorting to harmful chemicals.

Biomolecules, with their minimal side effects and natural breakdown, offer a promising alternative to the harsh pesticides used today. By focusing on such sustainable methods, Xu’s team is paving the way for a future where farming works in harmony with nature.

Reducing crop loss not only secures the food supply but also supports farmers’ livelihoods. With the backing of significant research funds and a clear vision, the team is on the brink of creating a solution that could transform agriculture.

The collaboration between fields—engineering and agriculture—highlights the importance of interdisciplinary approaches to solving complex problems. As Xu and his team continue to refine their designs, the agricultural community watches with bated breath, hopeful for a breakthrough that could safeguard crops against fungal threats in a sustainable manner.

Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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Randa Moses

Randa is a passionate blockchain consultant and researcher. Deeply engrossed with the transformative power of blockchain, she weaves data into fascinating true-to-life next generation businesses. Guided by a steadfast commitment to research and continual learning, she keeps herself updated with the latest trends and advancements in the marriage between blockchain and artificial intelligence spheres.

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