Hydroponics to the max: OmegaGarden Carousel

September 21, 2009 § 3 Comments

Ferris Wheel plant growing system is pests-free, space-efficient

Ferris Wheel plant growing system is pests-free, space-efficient

We really need to put our brains together to try solving the stringent problem of world hunger. Many of us green souls deny GMOs and try as much as possible to eat organic, but let’s face it we can’t sustain all people of this world on organic foods, at least not by current way of growing crops.

We need to develop ways so we can grow large amounts of food crops nearby the place they’re going to be consumed. Thus we cut energy for transportation and we can help cities’ environment by a great clean air infusion.

There are a few ideas regarding this plan: skyscraper farms, aeroponics/hydroponics, vertical/wall crops and so on. But these methods have one big issue namely the large amount of energy needed to properly  lit the growing plants.

This is where ferris wheel-like OmegaGarden comes to bring something new: a system to force plants grow faster towards a central light. It works like this:

-plants are arranged on rows around the ferris wheel;

-plants grow towards a light source as it provides them the vital energy;

-plants are constantly modified the angle of growing by slowly rotating the wheel so they adapt numerous times to the new position and thus being forced to grow even faster to correct the deviation;

-plants are feed by use of hydroponics, which means "a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions, without soil (...) with their roots in the mineral nutrient solution only or in an inert medium, such as perlite, gravel, or mineral wool." (wikipedia)

-the system can be arranged in a vertical stack to reduce footprint and increase efficiency;

Each wheel can accomodate up to 3000 plants, water usage is advertised as 1% of usual crop growing and the amount of energy used is 115 kW for CFL lighting and only 15 kW for LED lighting. Acutally during daylight the amount of energy could be even further reduced by using hybrid CFL/LED – Light Transporting Optic Fiber

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