Working in a StartUp

By Natalia Giner Laguarda

I am originally from Spain, Valencia. I'm a 23 years old Spa...

At some point during your masters, you will have to do your thesis. Let me tell you in advance that this is not only a big part of your masters; but also a big experience of your life. Based on my experience; the MSc Thesis is not only the longest course that you will have to do during your masters; but also an opportunity to explore your potential as a researcher.

Did you know that your research project (either your MSc Thesis or your internship) can be done within a group in Wageningen, a company or even a StartUp! Moreover, did you know that there are Startups in Wageningen looking for students to do their internships there?

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit Sigrow, a startup located at the StartHub of Wageningen (you can have a look at one of my list of topics for essay writing competition about the StartHub.

This time, I had the chance to meet some of the owners of Sigrow. I had the opportunity to talk to some of the students working there ( In this post; I would like to share with you some experiences and opinions of some other Wageningen students that have done their research projects in Sigrow.


Kiran Jayaraj

I am Kiran Jayaraj , from India and I am a masters student in Biosystems engineering from WUR. I am currently involved in a project with Sigrow B.V for an internship as part of my master curriculum. My background¬† is a Bachelors in Electronics and Communication Engineering by study, and working as a software developer. I also have some farming experience from India. This internship project is to understand how thermal imagery can be used to estimate a plant’s functioning. We developed a thermal camera with accurate spot measurements and can track leaf temperature measurements. Plants respond to stress by closing the stomata, which eventually leads to a increase in leaf temperature. Therefore, we hope to track these changes and use the data to build a model to provide an index of how well the plants are growing inside the greenhouse.

Jorge Leigh Urbina

Hello, my name is Jorge Leigh Urbina, a Msc Plant Science, Greenhouse Horticulture, student from Chile. For the last 2 months I have been doing my internship in Sigrow. My work is focused on creating a model that can estimate stomatal opening using thermal cameras. Stomata are little microscopics pores located mainly on leaves, where CO2 from the air is taken up, known as the marvellous process of photosynthesis. If stomata are closed, which can happen under stressful  environmental conditions, plants are not growing, and this is not convinient for growers. With this in mind, with the help of our model, a grower can manage its greenhouse climate and irrigation strategy to keep stomata open, maximizing their plant productivity and yield.

Keyu Wang

Hello, my name is Keyu Wang, I am a Chinese student of MSc Plant Science, Greenhouse Horticulture. It is the last month of my 4-month internship in Sigrow.  During these days I focused on establishing the information extracting system of Sigrow sensors. The data we get from Sigrow sensor is a list of values and times. Usually, you need to do some extra data crunching in excel in order to get an idea about what is going on with the plants. Sometimes, it might seem not straight forward and scientific. However, with the plant science knowledge and python programming combining system, one can get useful information more directly. Like water holding capacity, irrigation history, light intensity accumulation and even some prediction of your plant condition in coming weeks.

By Natalia Giner Laguarda

I am originally from Spain, Valencia. I'm a 23 years old Spanish girl who is in love with sports and the sun. I love travelling and running wherever I am. You will find me for sure in Sport Centre de Bongerd as is probably my second house (both the gym and the bar).

I did my biotechnology Bachelor in Valencia and even though I liked it very much, I was still CURIOUS about how far it could go. Hence, I decided to give a shot in The Netherlands and I came three years ago to do my erasmus. Then I came again for my Master's (Biotechnology & Molecular Life Science). Synthetic Biology is by far my favorite field in Biotech, and exploring as much as possible in this field is my goal here.

I would love to share my experiences as an international student to whoever is interested and of course I would be more than happy to solve all your questions :)

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