Controlled environment agriculture is rapidly becoming an important part of the global food system. For example, there has been much interest in the potential of large-scale, indoor agricultural production – often referred to as vertical farming – as a means to produce high quantities of produce. These “plant factories” are expensive to operate, however, in part because of the large power requirements of electric lamps that provide the type and amount of light necessary for photosynthesis in plants.
To find new methods of adapting lighting to plants’ requirements in controlled environments such as vertical farms, the researchers developed and tested a biofeedback system that allows for the control of light levels based on the physiological performance of the plants. “Controlling the intensity of light based on plants’ ability to use it efficiently may substantially reduce the energy cost of LED lighting, and contribute to making large-scale controlled environment agriculture more profitable,” van Iersel said.
The researchers used lettuce, pothos, and sweetpotato plants in experiments with photosynthetic light provided by a 400-Watt LED. Using chlorophyll fluorescence measurements, a datalogger determined how efficiently the plants used the light they received. This data was used to calculate the electron transport rate (ETR), which is an indicator of photosynthesis. The datalogger then altered the duty cycle (the proportion of time that the LEDs are energized during each short on/off cycle) of the LEDs to provide more or less light.
The target ETR was altered in a stepwise pattern over a 15-h period. The biofeedback system was capable of automatically adjusting the light levels to assure that the desired ETR was reached. As the target ETR was increased, light levels increased as well. In addition, conversion of light energy into heat (a common way for plants to deal with excess light) was upregulated, while the light use efficiency decreased. As the target ETR was decreased during the last 7 hours, conversion of light into heat decreased greatly in lettuce and pothos, with only a small increase in light use efficiency. “This suggests that the light use efficiency of lettuce and pothos was limited by a process other than conversion into heat, likely light-induced damage to the photosynthetic machinery in the leaves,” the authors noted.
“The biofeedback system successfully maintained a wide range of ETR values in different species, while it also is capable of distinguishing between conversion of light into heat and damage to the photosynthetic machinery as causes for decreases in light use efficiency,” the authors said. They said the biofeedback system has potential applications in controlled environment agriculture, as well as basic plant physiology studies, where the system can be used to maintain specific levels of physiological activity.
The Latest on: Controlled environment agriculture
via Google News
The Latest on: Controlled environment agriculture
- AppHarvest Acquires Agricultural Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Company Root AI to ...on April 8, 2021 at 3:02 am
Acquisition of Root AI and its signature robot, Virgo, bolsters company’s intelligent tools to produce foods sustainably Root AI CEO Joins AppHarvest as Chief Technology Officer MOREHEAD, Ky., April ...
- AppHarvest Acquires Agricultural Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Company Root AI to Increase Efficiencyon April 8, 2021 at 3:00 am
AppHarvest intelligent robot harvester AppHarvest has acquired the agricultural robotics and artificial intelligence company, Root AI, to improve efficiency and sustainability. Acquisition of Root AI ...
- Continuing Education: Urban Agricultureon April 1, 2021 at 6:35 am
Architects and landscape architects are helping create new growing strategies to combat climate change, protect fragile ecosystems, and feed burgeoning populations.
- AppHarvest Announces First Harvest of Tomatoes on the Vine from High-Tech Morehead Farm Shipping to Grocery Storeson April 1, 2021 at 5:00 am
(NASDAQ: APPH, APPHW), today announced that its first harvest of Tomatoes on the Vine from its flagship high-tech indoor farm is shipping to Kroger grocery stores this week. This harvest marks the ...
- Call for 2021 CEA Award Nominationson March 31, 2021 at 4:00 am
To recognize distinguished individuals and organizations in the Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) industry, Artemis today launched the 2021 CEA Awards. Nominations will be open from March 30, ...
- Expanding controlled environment agriculture beyond 'The Big 4'on March 29, 2021 at 7:51 am
Greenhouses, vertical farms and hybrid systems (collectively known as controlled environment agriculture or CEA) continue to attract investment at a much greater scale than in previous decades. In ...
- GrowGeneration CEO says there's a 'sea change' to controlled environmental agricultureon March 26, 2021 at 4:03 am
GrowGeneration CEO Darren Lampert joined Jim Cramer on "Mad Money" to discuss the grow store's business performance, expansion plans and regulatory priorities. Got a confidential news tip? We want ...
- Current Partners With Wageningen University & Research for New Interlighting Studyon March 25, 2021 at 2:14 am
Wageningen University & Research is extremely strong when it comes to controlled environment agriculture research and is even ranked as the world’s leading university for agricultural sciences*.
- AppHarvest Acquires Flagship Morehead, Ky. Controlled Environment Agriculture Facilityon March 1, 2021 at 4:31 pm
controlled environment agriculture (CEA) facility and the property on which it is located from Equilibrium, a leading sustainability investment firm, for $125 million. Equilibrium had worked in ...
- Lab Memberson February 25, 2017 at 7:30 am
Dr. Nemali has responsibility for extension and research activities related to controlled environment agriculture which includes ornamentals and vegetables grown under protected culture. He also ...
via Bing News