Last month, we announced the filing of our provisional patent, defining novel capabilities of Coretec’s CHS-derived silicon within next generation high-intensity, high-efficiency LED lighting. These high-powered LEDs are the driving force to double digit CAGR growth in several markets, and a very important one is vertical agriculture.
Vertical agriculture farms have several advantages over traditional farming. There is no need to worry about seasonal weather patterns, properly farmable soil, negative effects of climate change, or simply having enough space to produce food. All of the food is grown indoors in vertical closed-in structures without the need of pesticides, uses 90-95% less water, and more food can be grown in less space, unencumbered by external issues.
Vertical agriculture will play a major role in our future society. As the worldwide population continues to rise, and shows no signs of stopping, the planet is expected to be home to ten billion people by the year 2050, with approximately 70% of the population living in cities. It has become clear that traditional farming will not be sufficient to feed that many people given the earth’s fixed resources of traditional farmland and water, and while some of the largest vertical farms are currently able to grow over 2 million pounds of produce each year, we need technology advancements to meet the growing demand for increased food supply.
Vertical farming requires high-power, highly efficient LEDs. Coretec’s patent pending CHS-enabled silicon quantum dot (Si-QDs) LEDs satisfy this need. The Si-QDs are able to fine-tune the light frequency into a many specific wavelengths, including the color spectrum, to create optimum growing conditions. Managing specific light frequencies enables vertical agriculture to grow crops with increased attributes, such as faster growing times and higher vitamin and mineral content fruits and vegetables. Improving growth and nutritional properties are two key objectives in global food security efforts and making this small change to lighting can have a substantial impact.
Another aspect to keep in mind is that crops need to be transported before being purchased and consumed. With the ever-growing demand for food in the world, some crops travel very far, so it is critical that a crop lasts long enough to grow, be transported, be purchased and then sit for a few days in someone’s kitchen and still be fresh enough to consume. Coretec’s CHS LED technology, with an ability to fine tune light frequencies, can deliver specific light that extends the shelf life of fruits and vegetables, allowing the food to remain fresh for a longer period of time.
While there are several key applications that Coretec’s provisional patent can benefit, vertical agriculture LED lighting is an immediate need and CHS-enabled silicon quantum dot (Si-QDs) LEDs will drive the market growth which the market forecasts predict.