Plant Empowerment Workshop Online

Jul 10, 2020 through Jul 11, 2020, 10:00am - 2:30pm
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
Ohio State's online meeting platform
Dr. Chieri Kubota
Hydroponic cucumbers

Advanced learning and discussion towards “an integrated approach based on physics and plant physiology, leading to a balanced growing method for high yields, quality, saving energy, and profitability in greenhouse controlled environments”

Plant Empowerment Workshop Online

10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (EDT), July 9-10, 2020

Two-day workshop over The Ohio State University's Zoom platform


Thursday, July 9, 2020
10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (EDT) Part 1: Introduction to Plant Empowerment, The Theories
  • Basic knowledge about physics and physiology that play an important role in a greenhouse and for plants
  • Plant empowerment, from experience-based control to sensor-based control
Friday, July 10, 2020
10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (EDT) Part 2: The Practical Applications of Plant Empowerment
  • Introduction to the sensors, the software tools and the value of data analysis

Program Details

Recommended textbook (optional) Plant Empowerment available at

Registration is closed.Plant Empowerment Workshop

Workshop fee is $20 per person.

Please email Chan White at or call 614-292-8740 for questions and assistance (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EDT).

Please return to this page for any updates.


Peter van Weel Instructor: Dr. Peter van Weel

During his 42-year career as a researcher at Wageningen University & Research Peter van Weel developed systems that are usual in today’s greenhouses, such as ebb and flood watering, roof cleaner, movable benches, and aquaponic systems. Together with Jan Voogt, he developed a climate control strategy, ‘Aircokas’, based on sensors and laws of physics. A patent and a publication in 2008 describes this strategy and explains how to measure and control the stomata opening of a plant.  
After his retirement in 2016, he started the private company Weel.Invent to develop integrated, robust, low-investment and uncomplicated production systems for greenhouses.
He is a co-author of the book Plant Empowerment and supports growers, advisors, and manufacturers to implement this plant control strategy based on sensor information. 
Plant Empowerment is an integrated approach based on physics and plant physiology that leads to a balanced growth of protected crops and results in healthy resilient plants, high yield and quality, low energy costs, and economic greenhouse concepts.

Host: Dr. Chieri KubotaChieri Kubota

A horticulture and crop sciences professor in The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Kubota is considered a game changer in the world of controlled environment agriculture. 

Kubota teaches CFAES students about the future of sustainable food production. Her research mission is to serve in the development of science and technology in the area of controlled environment agriculture. Her projects are in an interdisciplinary area that encompasses plant physiology and horticultural engineering to enhance understanding and efficiency of Controlled Environment Agriculture plant production systems such as greenhouses, warehouses (vertical farms), and growth chambers.

Plant Empowerment Workshop details



The Controlled Environment food production research complex

Planned to begin construction this year at Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory in Columbus, the Controlled Environment Food Production Research Complex is a state-of-the-art greenhouse that will support research and teaching. The complex will be a truly transformational resource for Ohio State and for the global and local communities that CFAES serves, as controlled environment agriculture produces food year-round and closer to population centers, thus increasing freshness and reducing transportation costs. A lead gift from the Nationwide Foundation has funded a feasibility study and support for a portion of complex's construction.

benefits of controlled environment agriculture

  1. Food can be produced year-round in areas that would not otherwise be suitable for farming: deserts, non-arable soil, etc.
  2. As the amount of the world’s arable land continues to decrease, controlled environment agriculture can help meet the nutritional needs of a growing global population.
  3. Perishable crops can be raised closer to their point of consumption, reducing food waste and greenhouse gases associated with long-distance transportation.
  4. The increasing number of people moving toward densely-populated areas can be better fed.
  5. Growers have more quality control over production and plant nutrients, so the risk of foodborne illnesses can be reduced, crop yield can be increased, and specific flavors can be induced.
  6. Vegetables and fruits can be grown sustainably.

Controlled environment at The ohio state university CFAES

Summer in Winter: Ohio's red-hot greenhouse industry

A Special salute to our powering sponsors for helping us provide these internationally-known experts for a reduced rate.

Gotham Greens   Hort Americas



Also, thanks to our additional supporting sponsors:

Fibre Dust LLC