This winter the College of New Caledonia will test new LED light systems in greenhouses to stimulate growth in environments with poor natural light.
The college said the goal of the project is to develop a system that allows plant producers to customize light intensity in their greenhouses "to optimize lighting throughout the plant crop cycle."
Together with project partners Baldy Hughes Therapeutic Community, QuantoTech Solutions and the Alacrity Foundation, the CNC project will "fund, design and produce the lights as a cost-effective solution for plant producers."
"In our experience every grower has different lighting needs," Alycia van der Gracht of QuantoTech said in a news release. "Partnering with CNC allows us to evaluate a local grower's facilities and crops so that we can make the best lighting recommendation."
Several LED lighting systems have been developed and tested over the past year, but come winter the research teams will install the new systems and monitor the growth of a range of vegetables and herbs.
Oro Barton is the CNC electronics instructor leading the project, which aims to work with growers throughout the region.
"As more businesses are exploring technologies that allow them to extend their growing season, we invite them to connect with the expertise and facilities at the college to research and develop innovative cold-climate growing technologies," Barton said.