CambridgeHOK complete LED research facility at Philips Horticulture LED Solutions
The aim is simple – to develop technology that makes it possible to grow tasty, healthy and sustainable food anywhere in the world
- The global population will grow by 2.3 billion by 2050.
- Urbanisation will mean 66% of people will live in cities.
- Farmers will need to grow 70% more food.
- Currently 80% of agricultural land is already in use.
- To grow vertically and start to think about production per cubic metre and not per square meter.
- LED’s being a cool light source allow us to grow crops efficiently and with a high degree of control enabling us to grow multiple layers of crops in a ‘growing box’.
- Growing without the influence of outside day length or weather conditions allow us to increase the number of cropping cycles that can be produced in a year.
CambridgeHOK is at the forefront of this new technology which will revolutionise the way and where we grow food in the future to meet the demands of an ever increasing global population.
CambridgeHOK has recently completed a sophisticated Vertical Farming research centre for Royal Philips, the global leader in lighting. Philips state-of-the-art GrowWise City Farming Reseach Center at the High Tech Campus in Eindhoven, The Netherlands is conducting research into tailor-made LED light, growth and climate recipe combinations to find the optimum production model. This centre will make it a possibility to “grow tasty, healthy and sustainable food virtually anywhere” enabling local food production on a global scale, reducing waste, limiting food miles and using practically no land or water.
The new facility spans 234m2 of floor area and features four-layered mechanized planting racks in each of its eight climate rooms. Each layer has Philips GreenPower LEDs installed, that contain blue, red and far red light which are designed to be fully customisable for the crops and the producer’s requirements.
The facility is clean, sterile with no natural daylight ensuring full environmental control and optimum fine-tuned growing conditions. Each climate room has full temperature, humidification, dehumidification as well as CO2 and variable air exchange control. In total the facility has the ability to have 96 different lighting recipes that can all run concurrently. Each room has its own irrigation to allow the correct recipe per crop type to be applied. All data is logged and uploaded to growth databases to allow evaluation of the most optimum combination of climate, light and irrigation for each plant type.
The facility, one of the world’s largest, will work to optimize growth recipes for leafy vegetables, strawberries and herbs alongside more carbohydrate-rich crops, like wheat and potatoes.
This high tech innovative facility will insure high quality, better tasting and sustainable yield all year round, using less of the world’s natural resources and no pesticides. Locally grown, safe and fresh produce will be available to all who seek it.
Philips is developing the science of LED lighting to ensure sustainable food production for the future. CambridgeHOK are honoured to be a part of this process. This revolution could provide the innovative technology needed to solve issues of sustainability and hunger whilst benefitting the environment and people’s lifestyles.