Institute of Life Sciences

Facilities

Land Lab

Who we are

We are an international team conducting inter- and trans-disciplinary research on several aspects of agronomy and field crops, with emphasis on:

  • Sustainability of food and non-food cropping systems
  • Soil fertility and plant-soil interactions
  • Influence of management techniques on greenhouse gas emissions
  • Agricultural water management
  • Landscape agronomy to support the development in rural and and peri-urban areas
  • Management of functional biodiversity at species and habitat level for the provision of agroecosystem services
  • Agroecological management in low input and organic cropping and farming systems
  • Integrated pest and weed management
  • Management techniques for increasing nutraceutical properties of food and feed

These research aspects are strongly interconnected and have in common the up-scaling from plant to landscape level.

Where we are

The LAND LAB is located in Via Santa Cecilia, 3, Pisa, Italy.

Facilities and equipment

The LAND LAB is equipped with several instruments and technologies for the multi-scale approaches in the area of agronomy and field crops: 25 square meters of walk-in growth chamber (shared with BIOLABS); large greenhouses (shared with the University of Pisa and the Inter-University Research Centre for Bioenergy Crops, CRIBE); ~30 ha of field research areas shared with the Inter-Universitary Research Centre on Energy Biomass, CRIBE, and located in the Centre for Agri-environmental Research E. Avanzi of the University of Pisa, CIRAA; 48 volumetric lysimeters sized 1 m3 and equipped with automated irrigation plant and TDR probe for soil moisture detection; 40 square meters of area for sampling processing including flour milling and stoves; 15 square meters storage area of field equipments; 20 square meters cool chamber and two -20°C refrigerators for sample and seed storage; a seed drill, a combine and a forage harvester for Short Rotation Coppice hared with the CRIBE and located in the CIRAA ); Hydrolab Quanta G Multi-Probe Meter; Schlumberger divers for head temperature and specific conductance; 4 water level meters (50 m, 100 m, coupled with thermal probe and bottom detecting sensor); soil moisture and temperature probes; low flow pump; acoustic digital current meter; thermographic camera; Aquaterr digital soil moisture temperature and salinity meters; software for spatial analysis and numerical modeling; ~45 ha of phyto-treatment test site, monitored by means of 4 surface water gauging stations (each equipped with remote multi-parameter probe and refrigerated auto-sampler) and 15 multi-level observation wells; ~ 10 ha Induced River Bank Filtration test site monitored by 6 multi-level observation wells, each equipped with in-house built multi-parameter sensors; two automated biogas experimental plants for anaerobic digestion assay; GHG instruments for soil flux monitoring: portable CO2 flux analyzer and a mobile prototype for CO2, CH4 and N2O flux (shared with West Systems Srl); life cycle assessment software and databases for secondary data; a geomatic area that includes high power computers, Garmin GPS, ArcGis, Scanner-Epson and plotter for printing maps; three stereo-microscopes and a light microscope; shakers and centrifuges, Esenwein levigators, a Kjeldahl digestor, an atomic mass spectrometer, an Optical spectrometer, a CHN analyzer, a PCR, a qPCR, laminar flow cabinets (shared with BIOLABS); NIR seed and flour analyzer, portable leaf area, solar radiation transmission and photosynthesis measurement systems.

For further information visit Land Lab website (under construction)