Our team has developed a self-powered greenhouse for rooftops or balconies that generates solar energy to optimize good growing conditions in an effort to face the problem of food shortages. Our transparent wedge-shaped structure, called << Power Plant>>, uses solar panels to maintain an indoor climate and power an integrated watering system and special plant growth LEDs as well. As the world’s population continues to grow, so does the demand for food production, and while new technologies make controlled agriculture more efficient, they require lots of energy.
According to experts, every hour we receive enough sunlight to provide the world with enough electricity for an entire year. Our self-powered greenhouse aims to harness the sun’s free energy by combining it with high-tech agriculture to efficiently grow food, in an effort to tackle both the world’s energy and food shortage issues. “We need to rethink the future of agriculture. Through solar design, solar technology could be much better integrated into our environment,” “We believe in a positive future and the power of design.” The power plant harvests energy through solar technology embedded in the glass used to form its structure, meaning every surface is productive.
The energy obtained from the solar cells is used to power and maintain the greenhouse’s internal climate, including an irrigation system that pumps around water. This reduces water usage by up to 90 percent compared to traditional soil cultivation. In addition to the sunlight collected by the solar panels, pink and blue LED lights are used to enhance and control plant growth. For example, blue light encourages leaf growth and red light encourages plants to flower. By properly using the different colored lights, you can increase the efficiency up to four times.
It is estimated that by 2050, 2.5 billion more people will live in cities. As such,we envision greenhouses being located primarily on rooftops of homes or restaurants in cities to reduce food miles, reducing the transportation required to get production from the place of growth to the place of consumption. However, greenhouses could also be installed in places without easy or any access to electricity, so that people could grow food in places where this was not possible before.
We also envision them being used in shared community spaces, such as rooftop gardens. As the system takes care of the plants, little maintenance is required.