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PREMIVM (www.premivm.eu) proposes a low-cost, handheld device capable of non-invasively estimating ripeness and vigor parameters for grapes and vine plants. All this in the vineyard, by means of the innovative use of chlorophyll fluorescence and reflectance multispectral data correlated by specific mathematical models, with GPS tags for all readings. The measurement principle is based on the natural response of vegetal species to light, where specific molecules are excited at a certain wavelength and emit radiation of a different wavelength. The emission spectrum provides qualitative and quantitative data that can be used by vineyard managers to precisely control the field, reduce vineyard variability, define optimal harvesting times and increase production value. The device will provide data to precisely control the field, and increase production value up to 25% (expected yearly €5.000-10.000/ha income increase for winegrowing SMEs like SAPRUEM, QMF and PERACCIO). 

The European wine industry is a strategic economic sector that is facing growing competition in the international market, and at the same time dealing with reduced support from the CAP. With this reality in mind, an international consortium comprised of 3 technical companies and 3 winegrowers together with 3 research groups, setup the EU FP7 Project PREMIVM in 2011.

PREMIVM proposes a solution (under the trademark WinePen) capable of noninvasively estimating sugars, chlorophyll and polyphenols in grapes. Field analyses are possible by means of the innovative use of chlorophyll fluorescence and reflectance multispectral data, correlated by specific mathematical models. The measurement principle is based on the natural response of vegetal species to light, where specific molecules are excited at a certain wavelength and emit light of a different wavelength. The emission spectrum provides qualitative and quantitative data that is transformed into useful field information to the vineyard managers.

The WinePen instrument will be a low-cost, handheld spectrometer (estimated price range of €2.500-3.500 for commercial model) with touch screen display with the capability to make wavelength and intensity readings of fluorescence and reflectance. The existing pre-commercial prototype has a memory capacity up to 8000 measurements with a battery life of 48 hours of continuous operation. The dimensions are 255 x 75 x 40mm and 300g of weight.

All field readings made with WinePen have a GPS tag, giving the user total liberty to easily extend their previously implemented sampling schemes. When uploaded to the PREMIVM vineyard management software, the data is processed into easy to interpret spatial field analysis information accessible on the Web (PC, Tablet or Smartphone). The software can be used to optimize the growth/ripening of grapes, reduce vineyard variability, define optimal harvesting time, set differential harvesting schemes, select proper grape variety/terroir combinations, micromanage local differences in the vineyard and assist integrated agriculture practices.

The results obtained with the pre-commercial prototype of WinePen, in three consecutive seasons (2011-2013), demonstrated that this device is suitable for non-invasive and fast estimation of grapevine ripening. The companies involved in the project are currently planning the next steps for the development of a commercial prototype and respective market route.

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PREMIVM
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