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Nanotechnology in Soilless/Microgreen Farming
Global food demand has increased in tandem with the world’s growing population, prompting calls for a new sustainable agricultural method. The scarcity of fertile soil and the world’s agricultural land have also become major concerns. Soilless and microgreen farming combined with nanotechnology may provide a revolutionary solution as well as a more sustainable and productive alternative to conventional farming. In this review, we look at the potential of nanotechnology in soilless and microgreen farming. The available but limited nanotechnology approaches in soilless farming include: (1) Nutrients nanoparticles to minimize nutrient losses and improve nutrient uptake and bioavailability in crops; (2) nano-sensing to provide real-time detection of p H, temperature, as well as quantifying the amount of the nutrient, allowing desired conditions control; and (3) incorporation of nanoparticles to improve the quality of substrate culture as crop cultivation growing medium. Meanwhile, potential nanotechnology applications in soilless and microgreen farming include: (1) Plant trait improvement against environmental disease and stress through nanomaterial application; (2) plant nanobionics to alter or improve the function of the plant tissue or organelle; and (3) extending the shelf life of microgreens by impregnating nanoparticles on the packaging or other preservation method.
2. Nanotechnology Approaches in the Soilless Farming
2.1. R&D and Innovation on Nanotechnology Approaches in Aerated Soilless Farming
|The Incorporation of Nanoparticles into Nutrient Solutions||Type of Crops||Method of Soilless Cultivation||Finding||Ref.|
|Fe2O3 nanoparticles (30–40 nm) at concentrations of 100, 150, and 200 mg are mixed with Hoagland nutrient solution||Spinach
(Spinacia oleracea L.)
|Hydroponic||According to the findings, adding nano Fe2O3 to spinach boost its growth rate in a dose- and time-dependent manner. After 45 days, the stems and roots of spinach grown in various Fe2O3 concentrations at 100, 150, and 200 mg, are approximately 1.45, 1.91, respectively, and 2.27 and 1.25, 1.38, and 1.75, respectively, times longer than the control spinach.|||
|ZnO nanoparticles (25 nm) at concentrations of 0.2, 1, 5 and 25 µg are mixed with Johnson nutrient solution||Tobacco
(Nicotiana tabacum L.)
|Hydroponic||When compared to the control, Nano-ZnO increased biomass indices such as root and shoot main and lateral lengths, as well as root and shoot weight. Low or middle levels of ZnO nanoparticles increased amino acids, phenolic compounds, proline, reducing sugars, and flavonoids whereas 25 µM ZnO nanoparticles did not increase proline or flavonoids. Nano-ZnO application increased the activity of superoxide dismutase, peroxidase, glutathione peroxidase, and polyphenol oxidase more than bulk-ZnO application.|||
|Se nanoparticles (8–15 nm) at concentrations of 1, 4, 8 and 12 µM are mixed with a nutrient solution mixture of N (116 mg L−1), P (21 mg L−1), K (82 mg L−1), Ca (125 mg L−1), Mg (21 mg L−1), S (28 mg L−1), Fe (6.8 mg L−1), Mn (1.97 mg L−1), Zn (0.25 mg L−1), B (0.70 mg L−1), Cu (0.07 mg L−1), and Mo (0.05 mg L−1)||tomato
(Solanum lycopersicum L.)
|Hydroponic||The study discovered that both bulk Se (at concentrations of 2.5, 5, and 8 µM) and Se nanoparticles (at concentrations of 4, 8, and 12 µM) had positive effects on tomato growth parameters by increasing the fresh and dry weight and diameter of the shoots, as well as the fresh and dry weight and volume of the roots. In terms of chlorophyll content of tomato leaves grown under low-temperature stress (10 °C for 24 h), Se nanoparticles (27.5%) outperformed bulk Se (19.2%).|||
|SiO2 nanoparticles (20–40 nm) at a concentration of 1% w/v is mixed with Hoagland nutrient solution||Maize (Zea mays L.)||Hydroponic||Hydroponically grown maize absorbed SiO2 nanoparticles at a rate of 18.2%, resulting in a 95.5% increase in germination, a 6.5 % increase in dry weight, and better nutrient alleviation in seeds exposed to SiO2 nanoparticles than in seeds exposed to bulk silicon of SiO2, Na2SiO3 and H4SiO4 and control.|||
|Zein nanoparticles (135 nm) at concentrations of 0.88 and 1.75 mg/mL are mixed with Hoagland nutrient solution||Sugar cane
(Saccharum officinarum L.)
|Hydroponic||After 12 h of exposure to zein nanoparticles, the concentration of nanoparticles adhering to sugar cane roots varied with dosage, with 110.2 µg NPs/mg dry weight of root in a low dose nanoparticle suspension (0.88 mg/mL) and 342.5 µg NPs/mg dry weight of root in a high dose nanoparticle suspension (1.75 mg/mL). The translocated nanoparticles were then observed in leaves with 4.8 µg NPs/mg dry weight of leaves in a low dose nanoparticle suspension (0.88 mg/mL) and 12.9 µg NPs/mg dry weight of leaves in a high dose nanoparticle suspension (1.75 mg/mL).|||
|Hoagland nutrient solution was used in the early phase, and after the third leaf had fully expanded, hydroxyapatite nanoparticles (94–163 nm) at concentrations of 2, 20, 200, 500, 1000, and 2000 mg L−1 were mixed with 1% w/v carboxymethylcellulose||Tomato
(Solanum lycopersicum L.)
|Hydroponic||There were no phytotoxic effects on tomato plants grown in hydroponics with hydroxyapatite nanoparticles and increasing the concentration of the nano-mixture induces root elongation. For 200 and 500 mg L−1, the increase in root length was +64% and +97%, respectively, when compared to the control.|||
|Fe3O4 nanoparticles or TiO2 nanoparticles (10–30 nm) at concentrations of 50 and 500 mg/L are mixed with nutrient solution mixture of N (11.0 mM), P (1.2 mM), Ca (4.0 mM), K (7.0 mM), S (2.41 µM), Fe (17.8 µM), Zn (5.0 µM), Mn (10.0 µM) and Cu (2.7 µM)||Tomato
(Solanum lycopersicum L.)
|Hydroponic||When compared to the control and seedlings exposed to Fe3O4 nanoparticles, seedlings grown with high concentrations of TiO2 nanoparticles displayed an irregular proliferation of root hairs one week after the start of the nanoparticle treatment. Tomato seedlings grown under different conditions had similar shoot morphology, and plants treated with nanoparticles showed no signs of toxicity.|||
|Cu-Fe2O4 nanoparticles at concentrations of 0.0, 0.04, 0.2, 1, and 5ppm are mixed with Hoagland nutrient solution||Cucumber
(Cucumis sativus L.)
|Hydroponic||After being exposed to Cu-Fe2O4 nanoparticles, cucumber plants’ fresh weight and protein content increased. The activities of superoxide dismutase and peroxidase were also substantially higher in cucumber shoots and roots. The use of Cu-Fe2O4 nanoparticles improved the absorption of Fe and Cu by cucumber tissues significantly.|||
|Chitosan nanoparticles (149 nm) or chitosan-indole-3-acetic acid nanoparticles (183 nm) at various ratio are mixed with La Molina nutrient solution||Lettuce
(Latuca sativa L.)
|Hydroponic||Hydroponically grown lettuce treated with chitosan nanoparticles and chitosan-indole-3-acetic acid nanoparticles exhibits significant increases of 42.6% and 30.9%, respectively, compared to the control. In terms of the effect on leaf size, chitosan nanoparticles outperformed other treatments with the largest leaves.|||
|Patent No./Year/Title||Method of Soilless Cultivation||Invention||Ref.|
|N102701844B/2012/Rich-selenium-germanium trace element nanometer nutrition fertilizer for vegetable and fruit soilless culture||Hydroponic||The invention describes the preparation and manufacture of nutritional fertilizer rich in selenium and germanium trace elements for vegetable and fruit cultivation in courtyards or balconies using soilless cultivation.|||
|CN206354136U/2017/A kind of indoor micro-nano bubble hydroponic device||Hydroponic||The current utility model’s cultivation cabinet is a semi-hermetic layer stereo system, with the bottom opening passage effectively carrying out indoor and cultivation cabinet air exchange with reference to the ventilation ventilating fan. Aeration will be used by the micro-nano bubble generator to generate the other micro/nano level water vapor bubbles. The amount of dissolved oxygen increases the nutrient solution essentially.|||
|JP2015097515A/2013/Hydroponic raising seedling method, and hydroponic culture method||Hydroponic||The invention is to provide a hydroponic seedling system capable of raising a strong seedling and shortening the seedling raising period by adding a hydroponic solution containing micro-nano bubbles during the plant seedling period.|||
|KR20130086099A/2012/The method manufacture silver nano antimicrobial & lacquer tree a composite in uses functionality crop||Hydroponic||The current innovation is a method of growing functional crops using a silver nano antibacterial agent and a lacquer composition through hydroponic cultivation.|||
|CN105417674A/2015/Preparation method and application of micro-nano sparkling water||Hydroponic||The invention reveals a method for preparing micro-nano sparkling water, which benefits the field of scientific and technological agriculture in areas such as soilless production, fruit and vegetable washing, biological repair, dirty water processing, and so on.|||
|WO2017101691A1/2015/The method for cultivation of plants using metal nanoparticles and the nutrient medium for its implementation||Hydroponic||Seed germination and subsequent plant cultivation on an aseptic agar nutrient medium containing a variety of organic and inorganic components important for plant growth, such as iron, zinc, and copper in the form of electro-neutral metal nanoparticles. Chitosan can also be added to the nutrient medium. This process improves seed germination as well as plant physiological and morphological indices such as root length and root behavior, chlorophyll content in leaves, sprout length, and green mass yield.|||
|KR20060055895A/2004/Silver nano-containing bean sprouts manufacturing equipment||Hydroponic||The present invention relates to the production of bean sprouts for cultivation with silver-containing water when the bean sprouts are cultivated.|||
|CN203482710U/2013/Oxygenation and disinfection device for soilless cultivation nutrient solution||Hydroponic||A filter, an oxygen generator, an ozone generator, a rapid micro-nano bubble generator, and an ultraviolet disinfector are all part of the soil-free nutrient solution oxygenation and disinfection system.|||
|AU2015370052B2/2014/Nano particulate delivery system||Hydroponic and aeroponic||The invention describes a system for delivering nano lipids, more specifically a nano concentrate, a nano lipid stable emulsion, a method for preparing nano lipid concentrates, and a system for delivering lipids for use as a carrier in manufacturing, medical, animal, horticultural, and agricultural chemistry.|||
|AU2016202162B2/2012/Plant nutrient coated nanoparticles and methods for their preparation and us||Hydroponic and aeroponic||The invention describes a nanofertilizer with at least one plant nutrient coated on a metal nanoparticle that is made by combining a metal salt and a plant nutrient in an aqueous medium and then adding a reducing agent to the solution to form a coated metal nanoparticle.|||
|TW201902343A/2017/Fish and vegetable symbiosis system including a support, at least one planting unit, a filtering unit, and a breeding unit||Aquaponic||The invention discloses a fish and vegetable symbiosis system comprising a support, at least one planting unit, one filtering unit, and one breeding unit. For water quality filling, the fish and vegetable symbiosis device is outfitted with an artificial closed form of composite filter material-activated carbon nano silver photocatalyst.|||
|CN104719233A/2015/Nano-catalysis aquaponics method||Aquaponic||The invention includes nano-catalyst aquaponics preparation steps involving the use of purple grit dust, tourmaline, nano-titanium, nano-magnesia, medical stone, and zeolite.|||
2.2. Recent R&D and Innovation on Nanotechnology Approaches in Soilless Substrate Culture
3. Nanotechnology Approaches in the Microgreen Farming
The entry is from 10.3390/agronomy11061213
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