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Harnessing the power of digital technologies to protect plants and the environment

STELLA is a new project funded under the Horizon Europe Programme, aiming to develop a holistic digital system (STELLA PSS) to aid in the early warning and detection of quarantine and regulated plant pathogens and in developing a response strategy that uses modern sensing technology and Artificial Intelligence.

The project aspires to advance pest monitoring and surveillance solutions, pioneer novel methodologies, and validate efficacy in real-world agricultural systems to protect plants and the environment. During the project, a Pest Surveillance System (PSS), consisting of the following three (3) subsystems will be developed:

  • An early warning system harnessing novel pest forecasting models and Internet of Things (IoT) sensors.
  • A pest detection system leveraging remotely piloted aerial systems (RPAS), remote and proximal sensing, citizen science, and traps.
  • A pest response system furnishing geolocated hotspots for initiating containment and counteractive measures.

Harnessing the power of digital technologies to protect plants
and the environment

STELLA PSS will be tested over three years on field, farm, and regional levels across 6 Use Case Pilots (UCPs) covering arable, orchard, and vineyard crops as well as large, difficult-to-reach areas (forests). The project will focus on 8 different quarantine and regulated non-quarantine pest (RNQP) diseases, expanding across 4 European countries with different climate and geological characteristics and New Zealand.

The STELLA project officially commenced on January 1st, 2024, marking the beginning of its innovative journey. Subsequently, the project’s kick-off meeting was held with great success on February 6th and 7th, 2024, in Athens. This inaugural event brought together representatives from all 14 partner organizations across 7 countries, highlighting the collaborative spirit and international scope of the project.

Kick-Off Meeting