7

I am an avid grower and like most I have spent much time and money on various lights and techniques. Take a look at this http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/1519924202/High_lumen_phospher_100w_380_840nm.html

Now even if it was crap, it is cheap and makes bold statements on its performance. So why aren't growers testing it and sharing their results? Why are there no journals online? Why is nobody even attempting to test this technology even though it is a very advanced white led technology? It has everything a led grower want from a light, full spectrum with UV+ IR. Could someone please give me a full detailed opinion on this as it has been available for over a year and still not a single journal.

  • 1
    This site is not focused on commercial growing applications. People prefer to buy from a retail store rather than sending Mr. Tang in China money via Western Union. Hopefully a distributor would verify the manufacturer's claim with an independent laboratory before putting them up for sale. – kevinsky Jan 23 '14 at 13:31
  • I saw Woot selling these the other day and wondered how true those marketing claims were. – Evil Elf Jan 23 '14 at 13:50
  • Yes but what would the performance of these chips be?, I've grown under cheap 50-100w warm whites, which even with too much green and yellow still grow plants very well. – Lewis Jan 25 '14 at 13:33
6

If you look on the spectrum further down, you will see it is nothing like "full spectrum" but two peaks that probably look to the human eye like decent white light. I would want more information before trying to use them for growing plants. Note also that this is a manufacturer selling them wholesale.

After all that, this week's New Scientist (Jan 18-24, 2014) has an item on pg17-18 about vertical farms. Even though the operational costs of LEDs (~28% efficiency) are far better than incandescent and even fluorescent lamps, they are still one of the largest costs for the latest generation of vertical farms. So much so that vertical farms still try to use natural sunlight when they can. Hence most are still found in high population tropical cities.

A Kyoto, Japan company (Nuvege) is quoted as using a windowless vertical farm with "LED lighting tuned to two types of chlorophyll, one preferring red light and the other blue". This could well match the spectrum for the LEDs you link to. As I said, I would want to find more, but yes LEDs are being used in specialized commercial settings where sunlight is not practical.

5

Truly detailed and accurate tests on various plant lights are sorely needed and currently lacking for many setups.

I'm sure you could get some plants to grow under those lights but they are far from optimal.

If you're looking for optimal growth then I would target an led system that is tuned specifically to service the wavelengths used by plants. The measurement that you should be looking for here is Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photosynthetically_active_radiation. That measures specifically how much light is being produced that plants can use for photosynthesis.

The best location for reviews that include PAR reading that I've found is http://www.growershouse.com. While they are a commercial shop, I've found their grow light reviews to be more fact based than the marketing brochures of the manufacturers.

Btw, if you're looking for a decent led light for a small area I reccommend this one http://growershouse.com/kessil-h150-led-grow-light-purple. I'm using it myself to grow high light plants and they're doing very well under it.

Hope that helps.

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