20 May '12, 8am

Star Wars on Weeds: Could Lasers Replace Herbicides?

Star Wars on Weeds: Could Lasers Replace Herbicides?

Weed killers, herbicides in techno-speak, must be toxic enough to kill the weeds they target. Thus, toxicity concerns -- ranging from protecting the workers using the chemicals to groundwater contamination -- confront any user of herbicides. Researchers at the Leibniz University in Hannover, Germany, may have an answer: weed-killing lasers . Farming with Laser Death Rays Sounds like a great idea? It is not so easy though. If the lasers used have too little energy, weeds like it. Laser lights of the wrong intensity make the unwanted plants grow like weeds, only more so. The Leibniz team has worked to determine the optimum laser intensity to kill the weeds rather than encourage growth.The second major obstacle is recognizing which plants to target with the laser death rays. The researchers have developed a system of cameras that film the field, and software that measures the...

Full article: http://www.treehugger.com/sustainable-agriculture/star-wa...

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Wars On Many Fronts

strategypage.com 20 May '12, 11am

At the moment, the majority of the Kenyan people still seem to agree that their government had to do something about the c...