The ARPA-E-funded Transportation Energy Resources from Renewable Agriculture Phenotyping Reference Platform (TERRA-REF) program aims to transform plant breeding by using remote sensing to quantify plant traits such as plant architecture, carbon uptake, tissue chemistry, water use, and other features to predict the yield potential and stress resistance of 300+ diverse Sorghum lines.
The TERRA-REF project is phenotyping the same genotypes of sorghum at multiple locations:
- Automated Lemnatec Scanalyzer Field System at Maricopa Agricultural Center (MAC)
- PhenoTractors on parallel plots at MAC and Kansas State University (KSU)
- UAV platform on parallel plots at KSU
- Controlled-environment phenotyping systems at the Danforth Center
- Manually collected field data at all locations
Whole genome resequencing is being carried out on ~400 sorghum accessions to understand the landscape of genetic variation in the selected germplasm and enable high-resolution mapping of bioenergy traits with genome wide association studies (GWAS). Additionally, ~200 sorghum recombinant inbred lines (RILs) will be characterized with ~400,000 genetic markers using genotyping-by-sequencing (Morris et al., 2013) for trait dissection in the RIL population and testcross hybrids of the RIL population.