Professor Andrei Lapenas and Professor Igor Lednev awarded SUNY Research Seed Grant

Professors Andrei Lapenas and Igor Lednev

Professor Andrei Lapenas (Geography and Planning) and his co-PI, Professor Igor Lednev from the Department of Chemistry, have been awarded a SUNY Research Seed Grant to support their resubmission of an NSF grant entitled "Infrared Spectroscopy for Automatic In Situ Detection of Plant Roots and Organic Carbon Measurements in Soil Profiles."

Their study will utilize methods from forensic spectroscopy and soil science to test the effectiveness of mid-infrared (MIR) spectroscopy as an extension of conventional minirhizotrons for recording root growth. By using MIR spectroscopy for automatic measurements of live versus dead roots length and mass, Lapenas and Lednev hope to revolutionize the way scientists study plant growth.

This collaboration between the Biodiversity, Conservation, and Policy program at the Geography and Planning Department and the Department of Chemistry will also provide students with the opportunity to join Lapenas and Lednev in summer fieldwork.