In order to improve temperature control inside of a growing system, we must understand how temperature works inside of a system with plants and the variables involved in determining temperature for our crops.
There are different variables that affect the temperature in plants. Some of the most important variables are radiation, metabolic heat, latent heat, and sensible heat.
Radiation: This is the heat transfer by photons transporting energy from one object to another. There are two types of radiation that are important in growing systems: solar radiation, also called short-wave radiation, and radiation from earth objects, also called long-wave radiation.
Latent heat: This is heat released by a change in the water phase. This includes two important definitions: Condensation and evaporation. Condensation is a process where a gas changes to a liquid. This process releases heat. Condensation is something that happens inside greenhouses when humidity is not controlled and can trigger fungi and bacteria growth. Evaporation is the process when a liquid changes to a gas. This process consumes heat.
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