Symposium on Sunflower and Climate Change

The International Symposium on Sunflower and Climate Change was organized in the frame of the SUNRISE project, by INRA Toulouse (Institut National de Recherche en Agronomie) and the French technical c...

In brief

In an unprecedented effort - 8 years project, investment of €21m, 16 partners including 9 public laboratories with a specific investment of INRA, 6 companies involved in sunflower breeding and the ...

The Project

In a context of climate changes and of world increasing demand for oilseed production, it is crucial to improve resistance to drought and yields of sunflower crops in such conditions. To improve ge...

Heliaphen phenotyping facility

Discover the Heliaphen phenotyping facility video:


To face climate change, agricultural systems need to be adapted. Sunflower, that is mainly is produce in Europe (80%), holds many agronomic qualities in crop rotation and is drought and heat-tolerant.

In 2012, 16 stakeholders from both public and private sectors of the sunflower industry gathered to offer sunflower farmers new varieties adapted to future climate conditions and also environmentally sustainable. This research project named SUNRISE is running until 2020.

Designing physiological and morphological solutions  is still our biggest challenge to develop new drought tolerant varieties. This is why we created the Heliaphen phenotyping platform. It allows us to carry out automated experimentation on each plant, testing individually their responses to water deficit with precision. The Heliaphen facility was designed mainly for the study of sunflower, and is operating from seedling germination to seed maturity. It is functional here at our site at Inra Toulouse since 2013.