Knowledge for a sustainable world

BSc, MSc and PhD

Claudia Carvalho studied Agricultural Engineering Sciences in the Faculty of Sciences, Porto University, Portugal (Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto) from 2000–2006, and did her final report (2005) in the USA as a Research scholar in the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Department of Crop Sciences (Urbana Champaign). There she carried out research on maize genetics, studying the influence of maize colour in carotenoids content.

She then went back to Portugal and started work in a trading company (2006). During that period, she went to Angola (2007–2008) to develop projects in the area of agro-livestock and technical guidance on farms.

She then returned to Portugal to do a Master’s degree. While waiting to start her Master’s, she worked for Syngenta CropSciences Portugal, doing trials monitoring of Syngenta products in vineyards in the regions of Minho, Douro, Bairrada and Beira Interior, during the 2009 season.

In 2009 she started her Master’s in Agricultural Engineering at the Faculty of Science in Porto University (Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto). Her Master’s dissertation was in "Performance evaluation of programs for automatic analysis of artificial targets for monitoring spray quality".

Subsequently, she gained a 1-year position (2011/12) in the University of Catalonia (Spain) working on spray quality at the Agrarian Mechanisation Unit (Unidad de Mecanización Agraria, UMA). In 2013 she started to work in East Malling Research (UK) as research assistant for the department of Pest and Pathogen Ecology for the Sustainable Crop Management Programme. There she was working mainly on the Spotted Wing Drosophila monitoring project.

In 2013, she was offered a scholarship with AHDB Potatoes (former Potato Council) to do a PhD at the Natural Resources Institute (NRI) in senescence sweetening of potato. After submitting her thesis in September 2017, she was offered the position of Research Fellow in Potato Postharvest Physiology at NRI. In November 2017 she passed her PhD viva.

Claudia is working on factors contributing to senescent sweetening of potato tubers during storage.

While chemical maturity at harvest and in particular sucrose and glucose content is

already used as a measure of processing quality, other nutritional components may have a role in preventing losses during storage. The aim of this fellowship is to initiate a research programme on the effects of mineral nutrition and potato tuber respiration/diffusion characteristics on storage potential of tubers.

Claudia’s work is funded by the AHDB potatoes fellowship in Potato Postharvest Physiology (1100004 Storage Fellowship,

  • Gil, E., Gallart, M., Llorens, J. C., Llop, J. C., Bayer, T. and Carvalho, C.: Spray adjustments based on LWA concept in vineyard. Relationship between canopy and coverage for different application settings. International Advances in Pesticide Application 2014, Oxford; 01/2014
  • Cunha, M., Carvalho, C. and Marcal, A. R.S.: Assessing the ability of image processing software to analyse spray quality on water-sensitive papers used as artificial targets. Biosystems Engineering 08/2013; 111. DOI:10.1016/j.biosystemseng.2011.10.002
  • 1st place in Faculty of Engineering & Science PGR Student Poster Competition, 2017 Postgraduate Research Excellence Awards, RETI, University of Greenwich (December 2017)
  • 2nd place for best Poster presentation at the 4th International Horticulture Research Conference (July 2017)
  • 2nd place for best Poster presentation at the Agrisciences Young Researchers 2015: Crop Production, Protection and Utilization event (July 2015)
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