LED system mimics HPS light, uses 40 per cent less power

August 22, 2019
Written by Greenhouse Canada
Earlier this year, Signify introduced their Philips GreenPower LED toplighting compact to the European market which has since been made available in Canada and the United States.

The compact, passively cooled LED toplighting is designed to be a 1-to-1 replacement for HPS lighting and fits into existing HPS set-ups and trellis constructions, says the lighting manufacturer, saving time and money on installation while improving crop results and reducing energy costs. The toplighting system can also be combined with the GrowWise Control System to allow growers to dim the lighting, based on the available daylight to mimic the dusk-to-dawn interval and enhance results for specific crops.

The system delivers an output of 1,800 µmol/s and an efficacy of up to 3.0 µmol/J. Compared to a 1,000 W HPS fixture, it produces the same amount of light, has a similar light distribution, while consuming 40 per cent less power and emitting considerably less radiant heat. Compared to a 600-W HPS light, it produces 80 per cent more light, using the same amount of electricity. By separating heat and light, this product gives growers independent control over their greenhouse climate.

The system also fits between sprinklers, allowing growers to easily switch from HPS lighting to LED or to create a hybrid LED and HPS lighting system. The dedicated brackets that come with the product make it an easy-to-install system. Specific brackets can also be provided to mount two toplighting modules next to each other when higher light levels are required.

“Since we showed this concept in January 2019, we’ve received many enthusiastic responses from growers who are eager to replace their HPS systems with LED solutions,” said Udo van Slooten, Business Leader Horticulture at Signify. “We are proud to announce that over 10 growers, like Arcadia Chrysanthemums, have already signed up for a project covering a variety of crops with the LED toplighting compact. Thanks to the optimized design of the wide beam optics, the LED toplighting compact provides excellent light distribution for most greenhouse configurations, including high-wire crops. Besides vegetables and flowers, it’s also an ideal option for growers of medicinal cannabis.”

Potential for more growth
Arcadia Chrysanten in the Netherlands is looking to equip its newest 4.7 ha greenhouse with a combination of Philips GreenPower LED toplighting compact and HPS lighting. The chrysanthemum grower already has five cultivation sites over 20 hectares.

Back in 2016, the Arcadia installed a large-scale trial over 2,000 m2 that resulted in “20 per cent heavier chrysanthemum stems with very consistent quality when grown under a hybrid set-up of LED and HPS lighting,” says Udo van Slooten, business leader of horticulture at Signify.

“We have once again chosen Philips LEDs because of the support we get from the plant specialists and the reliability of the products. With the Philips LEDs we can optimize the climate and light, in combination with the two screens we will use. We will be able to generate extra growth even in the summer, which would not have been possible with only an HPS installation,” said Andre van Paassen.

Seasonal flexibility for vegetable grower
Based in Morehead, Ky, U.S., the 25-acre AppHarvest greenhouse has also announced that they will be partnering with Signify on a hybrid-LED lighting system, using a combination of Signify’s Philips GreenPower LED Toplighting Compact and Agrolux’ HPS lighting.

Planned for tomato and cucumber cultivation, the AppHarvest facility will be complete in 2020. During fall and spring, LED lighting will be used to grow more produce. HPS lamps will be used during colder months, in addition to the LED system. The heat from the HPS system will help warm the greenhouse and reduce natural gas usage.

The LEDs will be installed by Dalsem Complete Greenhouse Projects, which is overseeing construction of the greenhouse.

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