Manual Field Apparatus
The MFA is connected to the DES via HV cables, and the DES to the power generation and monitoring station (not shown).
Several dozen vines were treated, ranging in vigor from what you see here to much healthier-looking plants, all with high populations of nematodes.
Expanding the treatment capabilities of the DES and broadening the data collection opportunities, the Manual Field Apparatus can apply the treatment to a much larger volume of soil. The concept is simple; with the two polarities independent of the DES, (thanks to specially designed high capacity, heavily isolated cables) the pin arrays can be placed at distances up to 36" apart - depending on soil conductivity - at a depth of 12" or more.
The primary goal for the MFA is to treat the large volume of soil across the root zone of an established plant to validate in the field the results observed in bench top trials. In particular, the DES's ability to target endoparasitic nematodes infesting plant roots.
First-round trials were performed in the research blocks of a commercial vineyard to study the reduction in nematode populations. By treating plants with known, high populations, including infested roots, we were able to determine efficacy on a much larger scale and validate our bench top and greenhouse trials. What we learned was the dramatic effect the plant roots had in improving conductivity, a key benefit for the DES.
There is broad versatility available with the DES. While nematodes are a focus, fungal pathogens are of paramount importance and the MFA will allow for expanded field research on the DES's ability to reduce the impact of fungal pathogens. Following up on several rounds of successful greenhouse trials, the MFA will be deployed to demonstrate efficacy on a large scale with the introduction of DES 4.0.