LEDs are no longer used just for lighting. Lately, horticulture industry has seen an emerging application of solid-state and LED technology. Natural sunlight, which is of utmost importance for plant growth, is not attainable in sufficient quantity for all year around. Moreover, natural light conditions contain factors that can disrupt the plant growth. Therefore, the use of artificial lights has become very common in urban farming. LEDs are designed to simulate sunlight and deliver wavelengths essential for plant growth, which allows for larger yield and year-round harvesting.
New Opportunities in Horticulture Industry
For growing plants, controlling the spectral content of light and low heat generation are essential attributes. Recent studies reveal that ideal spectral content and timing of both brightness and colors throughout the day and the season varies with different plant types. At present, growing of plants is done with blue and red LED light. Researchers believe that the future ideal horticultural light may have any number of tunable spectral wavelengths adjustable to the specific plant requirements.
While researchers continue to explore the correlation between specific spectral content and plant growth, LED manufacturers are quickly responding to the research. Recently, Osram Opto Semiconductors expanded its Oslon SSL family by launching far-red LED horticulture light that can be used for a large variety of plants along with a combination of its established deep-blue and hyper-red LEDs. Osram Opto Semiconductors also offers monochromatic orange, yellow, and green LEDs along with phosphor-converted white LEDs. Researchers are still finding a way to apply them in the horticulture industry.
As the Research and Markets forecasts that LED grow light market is to rise to more than $1.9 Billion by 2020, both LED manufacturers and makers of solid-state lighting technology are focusing on capturing the rapidly growing horticulture market. At the same time, researchers continue to study how different spectral wavelengths may further boost the productivity in urban farming.
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Categorized in: LED Lighting