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National Plant Phenomics Centre: an energy-efficient transition allowing over 50% savings in annual lighting costs

In September 2019, the National Plant Phenomics Centre initiated a tender process to replace the horticultural light equipment in one of their main grow rooms.

This internationally renowned center works with both academic and industrial partners in the UK and globally, namely by providing access to state-of-the-art greenhouse phenotyping platforms with unique conveyor belt systems, and fully automated high-tech image acquisition and precision watering tools. The NPPC is hosted within the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) at Aberystwyth University in Wales. 

We were keen to replace the existing 600W high-pressure sodium lights with LED lights, both for the improvement in growth conditions and from the environmental and cost benefits of lower energy consumption. We had very specific needs, as the lights needed to be 400 volts, had a high IP rating, capable of being used as top-up lighting with broad-spectrum wavelengths to suit with the large diversity of plants we grow in our facility” – Dr Fiona Corke, Smart House Manager 

 

Customized lights and field trials 

These specific requirements led Kroptek to propose bespoke versions of our Sunblast LED lights with customized power supplies and plugs to fit the specific voltage on-site, as well as our most versatile Broad Spectrum due to the wide variety of plants studied in the NPPC’s different Research Programs.   

We were very impressed with the level of detail in the lighting plan and the overall performance of the luminaire Kroptek left us to trial for a couple of months” – Jason Brook, Mechatronics Technician  

 Following successful on-site trials, the full transition roll-out was completed in January 2020 and the NPPC team appreciated Kroptek’s professionalism in dealing with the unexpected challenges of such an installation.  

The after-service care was fantastic, with prompt and friendly action to rectify the issues” – Jason Brook, Mechatronics Technician 

NPPC horticultural light Kroptek  

Energy efficiency gains thanks to an updated horticultural light equipment 

The gain in energy efficiency was calculated at 50%, not including the costs linked to the annual bulb replacement and maintenance required for about 100 HPS fixtures.  

The transition to Kroptek LED lights also drastically reduced the need for intense active cooling resulting from the heat release of the former HPS lighting equipment. The project funding was secured under an Energy saving initiative so meeting the NPPC’s expectations in terms of significant energy consumption reduction was key to this project. 

 

A few months later, the neighboring IBERS facility kicked off another transition project, replacing 400W HPS with LED for their glasshouse compartments. This time, as the need was for supplemental lights, Kroptek recommended our HiKrop model. This versatile luminaire was proposed in its 240W version to ensure an optimal 1:1 fixture replacement. The lights-only energy consumption savings reached an impressive 53%. 

 

Interested in changing your horticultural lighting system to reduce your energy consumption? Contact us for a detailed light planning study.