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Fluence Illuminates Wageningen University & Research’s Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge

Fluence announced its sponsorship of Wageningen University & Research’s (WUR) third Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge in the Netherlands. For the first time in the challenge’s history, WUR leveraged a broad-spectrum LED-only lighting system—specifically Fluence’s VYPR 3p solution—instead of high-pressure sodium (HPS) fixtures. WUR also implemented Fluence’s innovative lighting control solution, Wireless Flex Dimming, into the facility.

Wageningen University & Research is dedicated to researching the future of agriculture by exploring autonomous greenhouse technology, climate control, crop modeling, advanced sensors, data intelligence, computer vision, and robotics. Beginning in June 2021, WUR organized its third Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge to task different international teams with sustainably growing vegetables in a fully automated greenhouse environment.

"We expect that food production in greenhouse horticulture can be further improved by adding more artificial intelligence to the agricultural industry," said Silke Hemming, who leads the scientific research team for greenhouse technology at WUR, in a statement. "We make connections with international partners through this unique challenge so that we can take major steps."

One of the challenges growers face when transitioning from HPS to LED luminaires is that a typical HPS system is limited in its dimming capabilities, unlike LED technology. By leveraging qualified Bluetooth mesh technology enabled by Technology Partner SILVAIR, Fluence’s Wireless Flex Dimming solution allows growers to have precise control of dim light levels. By connecting the VYPR top light fixtures to the climate computer through Wireless Flex Dimming, the participants were empowered to implement advanced lighting control strategies that maximized plant growth and quality.

“In any greenhouse or controlled environment, the reliability of a cultivation system is paramount,” said Theo Tekstra, Fluence’s technical director for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. “Wireless Flex Dimming enables growers to simplify installation and gain solid wireless control of their light levels, whether in an autonomous scientific experiment or a large-scale greenhouse. We are now implementing this technology for customers with more than 7,000 connected fixtures.”

For more information:
Fluence
www.fluence.science      

 


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