Vertical farming technology: our LED grow light system

Gracy, our panel for vertical farming lighting up a layer of leafy greens

Choosing sustainable farming technology can contribute to the core values of vertical farming—to create a better planet for future generations. Today, a wide range of vertical farming technology is available on the market. From vertical grow lights to smart shelves with technological integration, there is one noticeable trend amongst farmers: the increased use of LEDs because of their long lifespans, energy efficiency, and low replacement rates.

 

Vertical farming technology

Vertical grow lights

Vertical farming lighting plays one of the most crucial parts of the success of a farm. As growing takes place indoors, sometimes in places without windows, the plants rely on artificial lights—also known as vertical grow lights—to grow.

Though many employ traditional lighting solutions such as incandescent and fluorescent vertical grow lights on their farms, more and more have upgraded their equipment to use LEDs to increase crop yield and quality.

Shelving system

Another integral part of vertical farming is the shelving of crops. Planting takes place vertically, and a robust shelving system is essential. In recent years, LED iBond has innovated our very own grow light system that comes with shelves and racks made of sustainable materials.

 

Why our LEDs make great vertical grow lights

At LED iBond, our LED grow lights carry many benefits that make them far superior to the average lighting solution on the market.

Exceedingly long lifespans

LED lifespans matter, and many opt for LEDs for their superior longevity.

The average LED on the market has a lifespan of 50,000 hours. This is almost 6 years of continuous use. As a farm operates 24/7, having a long lifespan is crucial to the operational efficiency of the farm.

The average LED has a lifespan 50 times longer than that of the average incandescent light and about 8-10 times longer than that of the average fluorescent light. But that’s not all.

At LED iBond, we strive to innovate lighting solutions to the best of our ability. We have doubled our LED lifespans to 100,000 hours through our patented heat management concept, which translates to over a decade of continuous use before the need for replacement.

While conventional LED lighting companies utilize a PCB, heatsink, housing, and driver in conjunction with their LEDs, we invented a ‘sandwich’ system.

This system consists of placing our LEDs between two Aluminium Composite Panels (ACPs). The aluminium skins act as efficient heat conductors that allow any heat generated by our LEDs to be dissipated effectively.

Flexible and customizable arrangement of LEDs

One of the most significant considerations of LED grow lights is their size. Space is precious in vertical farms due to the lack of it, and vertical grow lights must be flexible while effective.

Our patented heat management concept has resulted in light panels that are only 6mm thick. The slim size of these panels and their low weight mean that they can be flexibly arranged.

Additionally, there is also a great potential for customization. We understand that different crops require different lights and lighting conditions to thrive. This is especially true of seasonal crops that respond better to different light cycles and LED colors.

Our LEDs come in red, blue, white, green, and more. The light panels can hold different colored lights, and beam angles can be adjusted from wide to focused.

Finally, our light panels can be arranged closely between plants without creating overheating and drying due to low heat output.

High energy efficiency

Our LEDs have high energy efficiency, making them suitable for small and large scales on vertical farms.

Compared to traditional lighting solutions, our LEDs have an excellent lumen to Watt ratio that outperforms both incandescent and fluorescent lights. For every 1,000 lumens produced, our LEDs use about 12W of power, while the average incandescent bulb would use about 75W and the average fluorescent bulb about 18W.

Low operational cost in the long term

With high efficiency comes a low operational cost, particularly long term. Many people view LEDs as investments, and it makes sense.

LEDs are slightly more expensive upon purchase, but they have long lifespans and high efficiency. Ultimately, they have much lower replacement rates and require less electricity for the same light output level.

Money not spent on vertical grow lights can be funneled back into vertical farms for other benefits.

 

Our LED grow light system

As plants are vertically grown, shelving is essential in vertical farms.

LED iBond has innovated an LED grow light system that consists of shelves and racks for efficient and sustainable vertical farming.

Features of our grow light system

The system’s main component is a shelf integrated with the highest quality LEDs. The number and color of our LEDs are customizable to fit the needs of the crops grown on the vertical farm.

As plant responds well to the red and blue spectra in light, vertical farmers can curate vertical farming lighting by using a combination of red and blue LEDs to stimulate crop growth. They can also include high power white LEDs to simulate daylight as farming is done indoors.

The supporting component, the rack, keeps the shelf secure and builds the vertical layers for farming. The rack can be custom-made depending on the farm’s size and layout.

Applications of our grow light system

The grow light system can be used in practically any indoor farming location with access to electrical power. These include indoor greenhouses, offices, converted warehouses, and shipping containers.

Aside from aiding in the planting process, the grow light system can also be used in transportation, distribution, and retail.

 

Benefits of our grow light system

High uniformity

With our customizable light panels, vertical farmers can achieve high uniformity through high light output and the wide beam angles afforded by our adjustable LEDs. A high uniformity means fewer light panels are needed to light all the crops. It can also positively affect crop yield and the harvest quality.

At LED iBond, we conducted a performance test with our Vertical Farm partners to test the uniformity of our light panels on a moving gutter system. We compared our LED grow light panels to a traditional Linear Horticulture Luminaires using the same light spectrum with 6% blue and approximately 80% red light.

Our light panels were shown to have outstanding uniformity across the plant area. While traditional lighting varied +/- 50% from the average light intensity, LED grow lights from LED iBond varied only +/- 10%. These are highly satisfying results, and they prove that our grow light system is one of the most efficient on the market.

Durable and flexible in installation

Our light panels are made from recycled aluminium, inside which we imbed our LEDs. This quality makes them the lightest and slimmest panels available on the market without compromising the weight they can bear.

Due to the panels’ slim size, each one can be arranged in various ways and even be installed vertically, and the farmer can handpick each LED.

Compatible with third party device integration

One of the key benefits of our grow light system is that it can be integrated with third-party devices such as sensors, control systems, USB ports, cameras, and more.

For vertical farmers wishing to keep an eye on multiple vertical farms or large vertical farms, remote monitoring of lights has never been easier. With Internet of Things integration, they can also set lights on and off and dim them upon triggers such as time of day and temperature.

Our grow light system can also be integrated into an even larger control system with other vertical farming technology, such as ventilators and humidifiers.

On top of that, all lights can be controlled from one centralized location, such as a mobile device. Vertical farmers can then be away from their farms to take care of their family, go to a second job, or kick back and relax.

 

How our sustainable farming technology helps farmers and the planet

At LED iBond, we wish to merge our passion for light and data to create intelligent and sustainable vertical farming lighting for high-quality crop harvests.

LED grow lights are often the largest single capital investment for vertical farms, using approximately 100 Watts per shelf in a meter square. Using our dedicated vertical farming technology, farmers can improve their profit margin by 10-15% during operation.

As a company, we also pay close attention and contribute to the United Nations Global Goals. Some goals are to reduce CO2 emissions and food and water wastage and sustainably produce crops independent of farmland.

Using sustainable farming technology, vertical farms can be built in urban areas, and crops grown there can be harvested to feed local communities. The shortened supply chain decreases transportation costs and emissions and preserves harvest freshness.

 

Equip your vertical farm today

Choosing the right type of vertical farming technology is essential to the efficiency and success of your farm. High-quality LEDs can help plants thrive and produce bountiful and flavorful harvests, and they can minimize each farm’s ecological footprint.

For more information about our LED grow light system or other sustainable farming technology, please contact Henrik Fabricius, VP Sales, Vertical Farming, by calling (+45) 8161 7910 or email hfa@ledibond.com.

 

 

 

Vertical farming technology: our LED grow light system