Grow lighting technology has developed quickly over the past twenty years with the majority of innovation occurring in LED lighting – older technology like High Intensity Discharge systems have lagged behind for a few different reasons. Primarily, they are not digital so older lighting technologies do not benefit from the constant evolution and refinement that goes into improving digital tech, which has made an important home in our lives. Second, HID systems simply are not designed for vast improvements – because they are analogue systems that use chemical gas reactions to create light they cannot easily be improved upon.
Indeed, we are able to add features like new ceramic plating and computer-controlled timers and sensors, but the fact that we are using a specific kind of gas for a specific result means we are limited by the technology itself. LEDs, on the other hand, use digitizable “magnetic” lattice structures as a way to contain and pass photons to create light. This is why we see vast changes in LED lighting technology but not in HID technology, and it is also the reason we see a lot of hype around these revolutions – they indicate major shifts not only in capability but also in possibilities. This can best be seen by the major developments marked by VIVOSUN’s AeroLight and AeroLight SE series LED lighting. While small, these lights have shown major improvements in lighting capabilities that we would like to share with you here. But first, let’s start off with some definitions.
What Are Light Emitting Diode (LED) Grow Lights?
LED lights are becoming increasingly popular among indoor growers because of their efficiency and longevity. LEDs are extremely durable and can last anywhere from 10 years to 30+ years. One downside of LED lights is that they produce less light than HPS and metal halides. However, they are still considered to be a good choice for indoor cannabis cultivation. This is because LED grow lights can cover the entire growth cycle – from providing blue light for vegetative growth to red light for flowering growth, and LED grow light does not produce much heat so it is versatile and it is efficient.
How do LEDs work?
The LEDs inside the grow light provide a specific wavelength of light while emitting a full range of wavelengths. This produces a wider range of colors and helps increase the amount of usable light reaching the plant.
Why choose LEDs over HID bulbs?
HID grow lamps have been around for decades, but they are relatively inefficient at producing light compared to their LED counterparts. LEDs allow growers to create custom spectrums of light using different combinations of red, blue, and green light. This increases the yield of cannabis and reduces the chance of photo-toxicity.
What Is a Smart Growing System for LED Lights?
Smart growing systems are digital, programmable devices that can control electronic growing equipment in a grow tent. This includes ventilation fans, oscillation fans, and LED grow lights. Unfortunately, other light types cannot be controlled by these smart systems because they are not digital devices. LED grow lights, however, can be adjusted and controlled by smart growing systems.
These smart systems are extremely powerful. They usually include temperature and humidity probes that measure changes in the environment – these changes are tracked by the smart system, which then sends signals to equipment to turn off or on or adjust operation according to the space’s needs. These smart systems are usually contained within a small control panel and that is made with a computer motherboard that helps measure and react to these changes. Smart systems can control temperature, humidity, timing (or in the growing world called “photoperiod”), spectrum, and can even program specific powerful, unique operations that fit individual needs. These systems are also able to control multiple devices at the same time, improving efficiency and depth of operation.
What Improvements Do the AeroLight and AeroLight SE Make in Grow Lighting?
VIVOSUN AeroLight and AeroLight SE are based on this same smart technology: integrating computing power into lighting to enable a wider depth of control over the equipment in a grow tent. The AeroLight utilizes this computing power to give control over spectrum, light intensity, timing, interaction with other digital systems like ventilation and other LED lights. Yet, the AeroLight and AeroLight SE go much further than this: they integrate a circulation fan into the body of the light, positioning a fan directly above the canopy of plants in a place that helps encourage the production of auxins through stimulating the plant by bending it while simultaneously helping to balance CO2 and humidity levels within the canopy. In addition, this system also hands control of lighting over to the end user by connecting the light to an app on your phone, allowing for scheduling, spectrum, and intensity to be adjusted according to the needs of the plant.
The AeroLight is designed for a 2-foot by 2-foot space, so in a way it is a bit limited but it is designed to connect, or daisy-chain, to other AeroLights in such a way that makes expanding coverage by 2-foot increments easy. VIVOSUN has patented what they call an “H-Bracket,” a connecting support bracket that stabilizes multiple AeroLight systems together (which needs to be used in addition to cables). Multiple AeroLight systems can be daisy-chained together and controlled by the GrowHub Controller, giving growers complete control over a grow space without having to monitor individual units. This allows large grow spaces to be automated, cutting down on time monitoring and adjusting equipment. The AeroLight even has specialized functions that allow it to react to changes in the environment that are outside of the preset parameters.
In all, the AeroLight presents a new face to the growing equipment industry, one that has vast adjustability, personalization, and automation capabilities. It marks a revolution in grow lighting equipment that growers have been waiting for for decades. The AeroLight is no longer the only smart lighting system on the market, but it is the most remarkable, winning the Red Dot design award in 2023 for its performance and innovation, leading the industry towards a new type of equipment that defines what is possible for the smart technology era. This new era will include equipment that reacts automatically, “speaks” to other equipment seamlessly, and operates by itself as the technology improves. The AeroLight is the perfect example of the progress the industry has made and it shows the dedication the industry has for improving this type of equipment.