RapidGen Platform: A Revolutionary Crop Breeding Platform from ICRISAT
What is RapidGen Platform?
RapidGen Platform is a state-of-the-art facility that contributes to enhancing genetic gains through speed breeding and modernizing crop breeding by substantially lowering the time and cost of crop varietal development. This is achieved through shortening the crop generational window by speeding up the growth and life cycle of crops. This rhythm is accelerated by the RapidGen Platform, which is a research facility composed of testbed optimization chambers, lighting controlled greenhouse bays, and a temperature-regulated light deprivation polyhouse. The facility improves regulation of temperature, light and humidity that is required for the optimum growth of any crop.
What challenges does this innovation address?
Rapid development of improved food crops is essential to feed the ever-growing population amidst the changing climate. To achieve food availability and nutrition security, facilities like RapidGen can be used by crop breeders to overcome the limitations of seasons and photoperiod to develop the elite generations in fraction of the time and cost it would take if such trials were to be done in fields.
The workings of this innovation can mimic the optimal set of conditions within these closed installations to convince a plant to grow faster at high density and to reproduce quickly. These set of conditions, also called as ‘recipes’, are crop specific-protocols to hasten the crop cycle while producing healthy, viable seeds. This innovation is all about the test bed/condition optimization to speed up the growth and life cycle of dryland crops.