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Adding and indoor grow

Looking for some advice on LED lighting (brands, models, etc)…

I’ve been doing outdoor greenhouse grow for 2 years (using double-ended HPS for supplemental light) and am adding an indoor grow in a facility that I already own (reallocating some space). I am wanting to use LED in the entire area. Will be putting in a “mother and clone” room and veg/flower space (leaning towards going verticle with a rack system) since my warehouse has 30’ ceilings.

Any input appreciated

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Hi Nafmo,
I would love to discuss BIOS Lighting with you for both supplemental light for your greenhouse and for your indoor grow. We have our Icarus Vi fixture for vertical grow, our Icarus Gi2, and our new Ti fixture for greenhouses which will be released end of July. Our fixtures have a broad spectrum specifically engineered to maximize photosynthesis, growth and yield. The fixtures are fully assembled. industrial, wet rated with passive cooling which eliminates which eliminates inferior features such as fans, moving parts and noise.
You can check us out at BiosLighting.com as well as email me at [email protected]. I can send you the spec sheets to all of our fixtures and answer any questions that you may have. I look forward to hearing from you. Jennifer

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Just did alot of this research for my home grow and decided on Fluence Spyder Plus…

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If you are interested in using tunable lighting to reduce time to harvest and improve terpene profiles with finishing Light Formulas, check us out. We offer the industry’s most efficient tunable lighting solution capable of delivering flowering, vegetative, or finishing spectrums without loss of output power.

All made in the USA, wet location listed, and sanitizable.

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This is also a brand I can recommend through my research. But i dont have any application experience. It should also be noted that these lights can be deconstructed for custom size tables. Don’t know if that’s doable with other brands or not.

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Hey there! My colleague Eric wrote a great piece HPS/LED for cannabis here: http://pllight.com/led-or-hps-for-growing-cannabis/

And while you’re thinking of investing in LED, we have a 5 things to consider: http://pllight.com/5-things-investing-led-grow-lighting/

Hope some of this helps!

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I grow outdoors but start my seedlings indoors under LED lights. I’ve purchased three or four different brands ranging from 200 to 1000 watts. I haven’t had trouble with any of them so I haven’t torn any of them apart, but damn, they look virtually identical! Sure some are painted different colors, but the housing, mounting studs, plug receptacles, etc are all the same.
I have a sneaky feeling that they are all being produced in China by the same plant and just modified for the company marketing them. Even the instructions are the same pidgin English.
My one positive observation is to get units that employ COB (Chip on Board) technology. The light produced matches the sunlight spectrum and isn’t pinkish /blue. They also seem to come in higher outputs without increasing the unit size or the heat produced. The price difference seems nominal too.

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Hi @tsunamitropicalsltd

Please check that out: http://www.hashcropter.com/en/index.html! If you want to try just get back to me…

cheers

Christoph

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Hi @nafmo,

first question would be: What is your goal?

  1. Do you intend to save energy/money? (e.g. optimizing Total Cost of Ownership)
  2. Do you intend to get ready for future (take over controll of all relevant environmental parameters)

If you want to save energy/money Fluence, BIOs and Illumitex would probably be a good choise. At the moment VYPRx PLUS from Fluence seems to be the winner in terms of Total Cost of Ownership. Thats probably the reason why OSRAM has bought them couple of weeks ago…

The problem with those solutions is that you will get a fixed spectrum. Of course it will work but you will loose the biggest advantage of LED lighting! Because a tunable spectrum allows you to take controll of several processes inside the plants.

If you want a tunable solution Heliospectra, Lumigrow, OSRAM (Zelion), California Lightworks and GrowFlux are in the ring!

What I would do before investing money I would allways try out relevant fixtures in advance!

If you provide me more informations about your room and goals I would be glad to help you to decide.

cheers

Christoph

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Room still under construction but will definitely be sharing progress once i get up and running in the next month.

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HI @PL_Light_Leah,

thanks for the documents! But I have to mention at least two things regarding the argumentation of your colleague Eric.

  • First of all the calculation of the efficiency of HPS is frankly a bit sugarcoated :wink: If we consider the the actuall power drawn by your NXT2 (1,032W) we get not 2,1 µmol/J but 2,03 µmol/J at best. But thats not all since your reflector will absorb light too. So we have to consider a loss of approximatly 10 percent (especially because you are using a diffuse reflection material) so in the end we will end up with 1,83 µmol/J! A recently published report has analysed one of your fixtures on page 26 and they came to 1,7 µmol/J. I would be happy if you could share your toughts about that report and the results…

  • Furthermore your colleague is right with the following statement:

“In countries like Canada the government recognizes cannabis nationally and there is the ability to do more research. The University of Guelph is one organization that is leading the way in this research. As he states in this article in HortiDaily — Michael Dixon, Director of Environmental Control Research at Guelph says: “We have found that the optimal LED spectral recipe changes with every strain of cannabis.” This is a very important statement for growers to consider!”

But the conculsion should be that here the true advantage of LED lighting steps in. LED lighting can provide the ability of tuning the spectrum!!!

Please don’t get me wrong. I am not an opponent of HPS since that technology has also advantages like IR radiation. But efficiency and flexibility of the spectrum are truly not advantages of HPS…

cheers Christoph

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Good call going LED for indoor grows, nafmo. Major energy cost savings and better quality light.

Going vertical with the veg room is a good idea. We made our Verta grow lights short and low profile to offer more room for stacking. Vertical is the future of indoor cultivation, for sure. A few other tips we can offer having just gone through a lengthy engineering and design process to address the concerns we were hearing from the grower community in regards to LED grow lighting;

  • Be careful of how heat is dissipated from the fixture. Many brands have fans built into the housing which pull additional electricity and serve as a potential mechanical failure. (Plus they’re huge.) We did away with fans altogether in favor of our own passive thermal cooling design. The double-folded aluminum fins compress 72 square feet of material offering more surface area to dissipate the heat. No fans, same heat sink.

  • The other consideration is optics. Without finely tuned optics the LED light is just a wide flood, spilling light into the aisles and walls (wasting energy) and the light beams don’t penetrate into the canopy of the mature plants like they should. We have more info on our website about optics for indoor grow ops.

  • Then there’s the spectrum. There’s plenty of debate among growers as to the ideal color spectrum for cannabis at various stages of the grow cycle. Our engineers’ consensus was a full life cycle spectrum (mostly white) that offers the proper wavelengths for each grow stage. This can be customized, of course, to your preference.

If have other questions, hit us up! Otherwise good luck and keep us posted on the grow!

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Thanks for the thoughtful reply, Christoph! Since we manufacture both HID and LED, I don’t really have a vested interest in one over the other… In fact, a lot of growers choose a hybrid system using both technologies.

In regards to that study (thank you, by the way, great read), the conclusion does say that currently LED technology does NOT match HID technology in terms of PPF and lifetime cost - and both are pretty important factors. That said, the study also anticipates that future improvements in LED technology can possibly change that.

Leah

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Thats what I found on page 2 of the study regarding the lifecycle costs :

“The LRC found that three of the tested LED horticultural luminaire lighting systems had lower lifecycle costs and the remaining seven had higher lifecycle costs than either of the two 1000 watt HPS lighting systems that were tested.”

But you are right in terms of PPFD since you would need more LED fixtures to archive the same density…

Regarding the PPF you are also right but they authors wrote the following too (page 36):

“In fact the results suggest that with some design modifications, LED horticultural luminaires would have an energy and economic advantage over their HPS counterparts. The results suggest that LED horticultural luminaires should have increased PPF (around 1500 μmol/s) and have a luminaire efficacy of at least 2 μmol/J to compete on a one-for-one basis with 1000 W HPS luminaires.”

Conclusion: You would need a LED light like that to be competitive: HASHCROPTER :wink: Last but not least another advantage is that the spectrum as well as the intensity are tunable too.

cheers

Christoph

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Yes, according to that study (p36): “The results show that specifiers should not make overly simplistic generalizations about the energy usages and life-cycle costs of LED and HPS lighting systems used in controlled-environment horticulture, but they also show that energy use and life-cycle costs can be lower for some LED lighting systems relative to some HPS lighting systems.”

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Hi Leah,

Your are absolutly right. A lighting concept should allways be designed considering the the whole circumstances and yes many of the products/manufaturer out there use missleading

Nevertheless I very much like your products since you follow a very professional approach!

cheers

Christoph

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When you look for lights, you should consider 4 things:

  • Photons
  • Spectrum
  • Efficiency
  • Cost

Personally I’m a big fan of plasma lights. I’m sure many of the LED vendors will disagree because previous generations of plasma lights did not function well, but I’ve found a new plasma option that I believe outperforms in the above categories.

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Hi Nafmo,

when you choose LED light, you have to look their specification, true wattage, Safety standards, PPF value per watt, price and uniform distribution over the canopy with out hot-spot. as well as you have to use a light which can be easy install and full spectrum. Full spectrum white light helps you grow from seedling to flowering growth using only one light source so that you don’t need to buy two different fixtures or switching spectrum fixtures which runs different wattage for Veg growth and flower growth. you can find best quality and proven resulted LED lighting for cannabis at affordable price. Please check out www.crecerlighting.com as well as email me on [email protected] and we can help you to replace your existing one with the LED fixture and you can eligible for state reward for our fixture. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.
Happy to help you.

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