Areas of application plant protection

The epidemiological models presented earlier in this chapter were explicitly designed to build disease-warning systems. For example, TOM-CAST has been implemented in eastern North America in networks grouping tomato growers, the processing industry, extension services and universities. Weather sensing can be automatic or manual, data are centralised and disease severity values or advice of fungicide spray are disseminated to growers by phone or fax.78 For pest control, the model designed by van Roermund et al.82 can be used to evaluate strategies of parasitoid release for biological control under various climate conditions.

From these strategies of plant protection, actions can be implemented: fungicide spray, insect release or climate control. In this last field, the use of knowledge engineering was suggested by Kozai.104 It was then realised in the SERRISTE expert system,105 in which prevention of grey mould is a major constraint for the selection of the proper time-course of temperature and humidity in greenhouses.

Lastly, the control of the system state has been made possible by knowledge bases used for diagnosis. Blancard et al.106 and Guay and Gauthier107 developed expert systems for identifying tomato diseases.

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