In this study, the effect of the plasma treatment on corn seeds is investigated. Corn seeds were treated uniformly without burning or blackening by three kinds of plasma apparatus: RF plasma in vacuum, microwave-driven atmospheric-pressure plasma, DBD atmospheric-pressure plasma, and two other treatments: vacuum exposure only, and using plasma-activated water in the seed coating process, to investigate growth rate changes under realistic conditions. Each treatment was performed on a total of 1512 corn seeds. Seeds from each experimental condition were treated with the recommended rate of Poncho/VOTiVO with Acceleron, a commercial biological seed treatment that helps to protect the seeds from fungus, insects, and nematodes after planting. The 1512 seeds were divided evenly into three replications with 84 seeds planted for each replication at six unique locations across central Illinois. The results for germination, growth, and product yield over the 2017 growing season is presented. Overall no statistically significant difference in the yield of corn harvested was found between the control and any of the five treatments. This is likely due to the already near-100% germination rate of the corn hybrid used in the study and the use of the Poncho/VOTiVO protective coating on every sample.
ASJC Scopus subject areas