Development of NIR models for in vivo quantification of secondary products (Dr. Cornish)
We are developing rapid methods of rubber quantification within Kazak Dandelion and Guayule. We used a portable spectrophotometer which uses near infrared light and measuresment absorption and refelctance at various wavelengths. With this information models can be created to correlate absorption concentrations with the rubber quantity measured through alternative, more time consuming, methods. The main goal of this research is to use the correlations gained in order to more quickly and accurately measure rubber within a sample, preferably a living plant, simply by a 3-sec scan with near infrared light. This rubber quantification method will prove to be invaluable in the field of research science by not only saving time, but also by eliminating the destructive nature typical of other quantification methods. Once this method has proved valid the possibilities are endless, as rubber synthesis can be observed in a sample under the influence of factors such as temperature, nutrients, or light to name just a few. Models are also being created for guayule to determine resin content, water content, and farnesene content, in support of an ARPA-E Petro biofuels grant in Cornish’s HCS lab.