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Source Efficiency Promotion, LED Horticultural Market Analysis

Sep 22, 2017

The study of how specific spectral bands affect the different stages of plant growth cycles makes LEDs more suitable for this application. Broad-spectrum light sources, such as metal halide lamps, essentially waste energy in the radiation that produces some of the spectral bands, such as green light, which is now proving to have no benefit at least for plant growth. In contrast, the monochrome nature of LEDs means that solid-state lighting manufacturers can produce lamps that emit only the spectral energy needed by a plant, thereby increasing energy efficiency.

In fact, lighting-centric gardening is far from enough, but some principles have been established, and researchers have continued to study the relationship between specific spectral bands and vegetable or floral production. and led manufacturers are studying this. For example, Osram Optoelectronic Semiconductor company released the so-called "far Red led", the center wavelength of 730nm.

Osram Solid State Lighting application manager Kim Peiler said the 450nm and 660nm bands as the peaks of chlorophyll uptake for all plants were fully confirmed. However, new research has shown that the combination of 660 and 730nm light can affect photosensitive pigments in plants. Peiler adds that stimulating plant pigments can make plants bloom faster.

Researchers are also studying how to apply far red light and what they do in the plant's growth cycle. For example, Peiler says that depriving plants of red light can simulate shadows and cause plants to grow longer stems that can be used for grafting. But in another phase of the growth cycle or in different applications, red combinations may trigger flowering quickly. 

The combination of LED types will continue to develop in horticulture. Osram also offers orange, yellow and green monochrome LEDs as well as researchers are experimenting with phosphor-converted white LEDs. Why is it a white led? The blue light Pump in the white LED provides the desired blue peak, while the workers in the gardening environment need white light. Therefore, the red and white LEDs are used to prove that it is useful to provide the light that plants and humans need.

At the same time, horticultural solid-state lighting market potential is driving new lighting manufacturers into the market segment. For example, Hubbell Lighting introduced the nutriled horticultural lighting product line using $number NM red LED and $number NM blue LED. Hubbell New Product Innovation manager Tom Veltri said that Blu-ray LED is the key to vegetative growth stage, and red LED can promote flowering and result. Hubbell is using a 2:1 red-blue blend, and Veltri says it can serve the widest segment of the horticultural market.