New LED grow light technology to boost crop production

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Two recent developments from leading horticultural LED lighting suppliers demonstrate how this technology continues to grow ever more sophisticated in order to meet the needs of large-scale commercial greenhouse production.

US-based Curtis Mathes Grow Lights Inc (CMGL) has launched a novel control, monitoring and alert system designed to provide WiFi-based automated control of its Harvester lighting units; while Valoya, a provider of high-end, energy-efficient LED grow lights for use in crop science, vertical farming and medicinal plants cultivation, has today announced a licensing program making its patented technology available to LED manufacturers and horticultural LED fixture providers.

CMGL says its Harvester lighting units deliver a highly optimized, true, full spectrum of light deploying the company’s custom proprietary phosphor formula, which maximises photobiological efficiency for flowering plants, making it a popular choice for cannabis cultivation for both the emerging medicinal and recreational sectors in the US and beyond.

The company’s new control system, launched on 4 June, provides Wi-Fi-based automated control of individual and groups of lighting units. Every 205W Harvester will be equipped with humidity, temperature, light intensity, and power sensors for high-resolution control of photoperiod and other critical environmental parameters.

We’re excited about the additional value that our new monitoring features bring to the Harvester technology,” said Zacariah Hildenbrand, chief scientific officer. “We designed the monitoring system to help horticultural professionals and gardening enthusiasts optimize their environmental factors for superior crop production.”

CMGL confirmed the development of the second generation of this new technology is already under way and will include customizable lighting recipes and the integration of daily light integrals to optimize LED light production in greenhouse settings.

A week after CMGL launched its control system, Valoya, a leading provider of LED grow lights for biotech and horticultural purposes, announced a licensing program making its patented technology available to LED manufacturers and horticultural LED fixture providers.

Based in Finland, Valoya boasts an extensive patent portfolio in the field of horticultural LED lighting, following the company’s significant innovation and investments into R&D over the past eleven years. Currently, the company’s patent portfolio consists of over 100 patents (see valoya.com/patents for more information) in the field of light spectra for plant cultivation and lighting applications.

We have always been curious about the possibilities of light and how its potential could be pushed further to make cultivation of crops we use for food or medicine production more efficient,” explained Lars Aikala, CEO and co-founder of Valoya. “When we started in 2009, LED meant piercing purple light produced by red and blue chips. We were the first to apply wide spectrum LED light to plants in our experiments and to introduce wide spectrum light to the market. We are now in a business phase where we can extend this intellectual property and know-how to other companies wishing to produce premium-quality horticultural LED luminaires through our licensing program.”

Nemanja Rodic, marketing director of Valoya, added: “After having conducted over 600 plant trials on over 300 plant varieties/species, we have an understanding of plant response to light, unmatched by other LED companies in the market. The focus remains on advancing horticulture through developing even better spectra and helping our customers grow. We are happy we can now share this expertise with other companies.”

Valoya’s customer base includes numerous vertical farms, greenhouses and research institutions all over the world (including 8 out of 10 of the world’s largest agricultural companies).

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