Research Facility for Global Change Molecular Physiology of Trees

A major component of the Research Facility for Global Change Molecular Physiology of Trees is an experimental field site, where we simulate future climate. For that reason Art Weis, the director of UofT's Koffler Scientific Reserve at Joker's Hill (KSR)  like's to call these experiments the "The Time Machine Experiment":

We have established an experimental facility at KSR at Jokers Hill, where temperature can be manipulated in the field. This infrastructure is capable of elevating air temperature while all other environmental factors remain constant. This is achieved through a temperature free-air controlled enhancement experiment (T-FACE), established at Jokers Hill. It is well designed to explore the impact of global change in the field, using infrared heaters to raise growing temperature in experimental plots. The basic layout follows the design described in [1]. It consists of six circular field plots, each measuring 3 m in diameter, which each heated by six ceramic infrared heaters suspended along the margins of the plots. An additional six plots will be unheated to serve as controls for the heating effects. The design is capable of raising/elevating daytime temperature by 2°C and nighttime temperature by 3°C. In this experiment photosynthetic carbon uptake, chlorophyll fluorescence parameters and energy quenching characteristics are assessed in different provenances of White pine seedlings. Analysis of carbon metabolites [2] provides the insight to establish relationships between photosynthesis and metabolic sinks, which can then be linked to expression of proteins and genes of photosynthesis and carbohydrate metabolism [3,4].

Warming Array

View of the new Warming Array Phase II at KSR, May 2012

 

[1] Kimbal BA et al. (2008): GCB 14, 309

[2] Ensminger I et al. (2008): New Phytol 177, 428

[3] Piao S, et al. (2008): Nature 451, 49

[4] Saxe H et al. (2001): New Phytol 149, 369