Industrial PhD – Biodiversity

In January 2020 our data analyst Klas Rydhmer, who has been part of the company since 2016, began an industrial PhD with the working title: Development of automated and non-intrusive monitoring of pollinators and insect biodiversity using optical sensor.

January 28, 2020

The PhD is a 3-year project in collaboration with the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource management, University of Copenhagen.

There are various programs in place in Denmark to promote biodiversity, but the process of verifying the effectiveness of such actions is difficult, labor intensive and time consuming.

This project aims to improve the monitoring of insect biodiversity, pollinator behavior and occurrence and activity of insects by applying, testing and improving current FaunaPhotonics sensor technology. Specifically, this will be done by deploying multiple non-intrusive optical sensors across different habitats along with conventional traps and observations. Throughout the project, scientific documentation and development of new supporting tools will lead to a platform for digitalized and automated large-scale monitoring of the biodiversity of insect populations.

We believe this method will provide research with a diagnostic tool on insect behavior, authorities with comprehensive data to support decision making and industry with a tool to balance production with sustainability.

Main supervisor of the PhD project will be Professor Inger Kappel Schmidt, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, University of Copenhagen. Prof. Schmidt’s research focuses on understanding the interaction between land-management, biogeochemistry and biodiversity. During the last years, prof. Schmidt has built a new entomologist group focused on insect responses to environmental change and land management. In 2019, she initiated large scale studies of competition between wild bees and honeybees with conventional time-consuming methodologies.