Vertical Farming Factories Delivering Eco-Produce

By: | November 30th, 2014

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IndustryTap has reported on recycled shipping container farms, urban farming technology, and Do It Yourself (DIY) farming machines and equipment.

All these and more are simply waypoints to a sustainable future for humanity. In order to provide 10 or 12 billion humans with a steady source of food and water, the world will need to move away from lucrative yet risky monoculture farming while urban centers find innovative ways to grow and harvest healthy fruits and vegetables while minimizing energy use and pollution.

Vertical Farming Technology

A company called AeroFarms is pioneering the use of light emitting diode (LED) lighting and wavelength targeting to improve the efficiency of photosynthesis while grow plants in vertical systems. AeroFarms is currently running pilot projects in Ithaca, New York, Newark, New Jersey, Seattle, Washington, Chicago, Illinois and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

The following video is an overview of AeroFarms technology:

Similar systems, such as recycled shipping container farms, are closed loop systems, meaning recirculation of nutrients and plant feed reduces costs and decreases water consumption by 95%. Vertical farms allow over 250 different types of green vegetables, herbs, and fruits to be grown in skyscrapers or vertically in areas that are devoid of arable land.

While AeroFarms use less space and water with no pesticides the pilot projects currently underway are assessing whether or not the technology can be scaled up economically. One critical challenge is the use of high pressure systems used to distribute a nutrient mist, a process that currently uses a significant amount of energy.

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David Russell Schilling

David enjoys writing about high technology and its potential to make life better for all who inhabit planet earth.

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