1. Save money with LEDs
What is a good LED grow light? LED stands for light-emitting diode. A form of solid-state lighting, an LED uses a semiconductor chip, known as an LED die, that turns an electrical current into photons through a process called electroluminescence. An LED may be configured either as a single-die emitter that’s mounted on a circuit board, or an array of dies mounted directly on a circuit board, which is known as a chip-on-board (COB) module. An LED lamp is made up of an LED mounted to a heat sink, along with directional lenses and a power supply.
LED grow lights can save energy. LEDs use about half the electricity of typical HPS grow lights.
They last longer. Qualifying LEDs have a 5-year warranty and rated lifetime of at least 50,000 hours.
They are smaller than other grow lights. LED lights are only a few inches in height, so they’re easier to stack.
They run cooler than HPS lights. If you’re currently growing with HPS and your space gets hot, LEDs may be a good option to reduce your energy consumption.
Plus, they’re great for your plants. Some LED grow lights can be calibrated, dimmed, or tuned specifically for your plant type.
2. Efficiency: spectrum efficiency, equipment efficiency, and form factor
(1). Wavelength efficiency
The ability to deliver very specific wavelengths to our plants is important because plants absorb light in a specific range. By targeting that specific range, less light is wasted—we aren’t emitting wavelengths that the plants can’t use.
high efficiency LEDs -spectrum
Different plant pigments take up light at different wavelengths. Here you can see plant absorption levels of different wavelengths.
(2). Equipment efficiency
Equipment efficiency describes the amount of electricity that is converted into light, and is usually stated as a percentage. LEDs usually reach somewhere between 40 and 50% efficiency, meaning that 40–50% of electricity put in comes out in the form of light.
high efficiency LEDs – efficiency comparisonTo put that in perspective, a top-notch HID light would see about 25–30% efficiency. For example: if you switched from a typical 600-watt HID light to a 300-watt LED, it would produce about the same amount of light. Remember that since we’re emitting a very specific spectrum, we’ll see another bump in productivity on top of that.
A common misconception is that LEDs don’t produce heat. They do. For each watt being put into an LED, about 3 BTUs (British Thermal Units, an important unit for calculating heat removal) are produced.
(3). Form factor
The form factor is how light is configured and integrated into the farm. It determines how close you’re able to put the light to the crop and how it uses space in the farm. Three main form factors are panels, fixtures (box-shaped), and bars.
Each form factor has pros and cons—for instance, fixtures typically featured air-cooled LEDs with high intensity, while bars, so far, have only been able to offer low intensities.
3. Energy-efficient lighting
It is an obvious advantage for hydroponic gardening.
The impressively long lifespan that LED grow lights offer is also due to the fact that they are solid-state, rather than having vacuum or gas components that deteriorate over time. Features such as the built-in heat sink, which pulls heat away from the lamp and dissipates it into the air, also help improve brightness and longevity.
Lower running temperatures of LED grow lights are advantageous in hydroponics for a couple of reasons. The first is that lighting that gives off a lot of heat can easily create unacceptable temperatures in the confined space of a grow room, so you need a cooling system, which runs up your electricity bill. The second reason is that a lower heat output makes it possible to place lights closer to the plants. This is important for indoor growing because the farther away from a light source a plant is, the less energy is available to the plant for photosynthesis. Therefore, the closer the fixtures, the better the light efficiency.
4. Color temperature/light wavelength output/PAR
Light wavelength output refers to the colors of the spectrum that are present in the light emitted by a lamp, as measured in nanometers. While sunlight contains the full spectrum of light energy, we humans can only see part of the light energy spectrum. Likewise, the pigments and photoreceptors in plants only respond to certain wavelengths of light.
Color temperature offers a sense of the light spectrum in terms of cool colors, which are in the blue range, and warm colors, which are the reds.
PAR stands for photosynthetically active radiation, which is the range of usable light energy that most plants absorb for photosynthesis.
Hydroponics enthusiasts tend to get caught up in the minutiae of light energy and its effects on plant growth. But basically, while fluorescent bulbs are now available that put out a variety of cool, warm, and full-spectrum lighting, LED technology enables an unlimited variety of precision outputs ranging from broad-spectrum white light that’s remarkably close to sunlight to light that growers can use for intricately specific purposes, such as encouraging basil plants to develop a stronger flavor.
From all, all of growers has known What a good LED grow light is now. Happy grow!