Lighting leader Philips has opened the GrowWise City Farming research centre – a new facility for developing tailored LED “light recipes” for indoor farming in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
The new 234m² facility will be used to study how light can maximise the quality and yield of different crops in order to help growers produce healthy and tasty food indoors all year long.
“Our aim is to develop the technology that makes it possible to grow tasty, healthy and sustainable food virtually anywhere. The research we are undertaking will enable local food production on a global scale, reducing waste, limiting food miles and using practically no land or water,” said Gus van der Feltz, Philips Global Director of City Farming, in a news release.
“This new GrowWise City Farming research centre aims to take City Farming to the next level, with Philips scientists leading research into LED light recipes for vegetable and cereal production.”
The research centre is a clean and sterile environment totally closed to natural light and air that enables fully controlled growing conditions.
The connected LED systems at the facility are fully customisable, which allows for the development of “growth recipes” tailored to each crop variety or producers’ requirements. The end result, Philips says, is better tasting products, grown in a more sustainable way and without the need for pesticides.
The company uses its Philips GreenPower LED lighting which is highly energy efficient and produces less heat than other LED lighting. These lights can be installed closer to plants for optimal positioning and uniform illumination.
The crops at the farming centre are planted in four-layered mechanised racks and there are eight rooms with set climatic conditions. Each plantation layer at the facility has Philips GreenPower LEDs that contain blue, red and far red LEDs and are designed and formulated specifically for growing crops, and allow for the fine tuning for tailor-made light treatment.
Philips said that the research at the centre will be focused on leafy vegetables, strawberries and herbs.
The new research facility, which will also have demonstration rooms for customers, is located at Eindhoven’s High Tech Campus – a technology hub that houses more than 135 companies and some 10,000 researchers, developers and entrepreneurs.
Philips has been active in horticultural lighting since 1936.