Greenhouse Product News Honors Andrew Myers Among 2018 40 Under 40

ProGrowTech CEO Andrew Myers was recognized among young horticulture industry leaders nationwide in Greenhouse Product News’ annual 40 Under 40 awards.

Honorees are nominated by their peers and chosen based on the exceptional contributions they have made to their companies, customers and communities to help shape the future of the horticulture industry. This year’s class of winners includes university professors, greenhouse growers, business owners, software experts, scientists and more.

Andrew is the only LED lighting expert to be recognized this year, selected for his commitment to creating sustainable growing solutions to reduce food insecurity and his commitment to advancing horticulture through politics, which includes co-authoring the 2010 Arizona Medical Marijuana Act. He has been involved in public policy related to horticulture and cannabis cultivation for almost a decade, serving as a board member and executive director of the Arizona Dispensaries Association as well as co-founder of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Association.

As CEO, Andrew is in charge of establishing and executing ProGrowTech’s vision, driving the implementation of operational, research and product development activities to help expand the company’s footprint nationwide.

View the full list of winners here.

Lumens per Watt vs. Micromoles per Joule: What These Measurements Mean, and How They Influence Your Grow Facility

When deciding what lights to purchase for your facility, it is imperative to understand the difference between efficiency and efficacy. While these two terms are often used interchangeably, they take on slightly different meanings when discussing LED lights. This distinction can make a huge impact on the growers’ choice, particularly after taking a few aspects into consideration. Some may argue the most important measurements to consider before purchasing LED lights are lumens per watt and micromoles per joule. These measurements speak to the quality of the light at hand.

Efficiency: Lumens per Watt

Understanding lumens per watt means understanding how efficient your lighting system is. Lumens, often abbreviated as lm, measure the overall light output. You have probably heard of watts before — this term describes the power consumption by a lamp. To put it simply, LPW determines how much light you’re getting from each unit of energy. The higher the LPW, the more efficient the bulb is.

Efficacy: Micromoles per Joule

Before dissecting what micromoles per joule represents, it could be helpful to understand what photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) and photosynthetic photon efficacy (PPE) mean. PAR is the type of light — not a measurement — that is absorbed by plants to be converted into growth. This type of light is represented by photons with 400 and 700 nm wavelengths. Furthermore, PPE represents the number of specifically PAR photons released by a particular light. You can read more about these terms in our recent post Invest in Uniformity: How LED Lights can Offer Superior Uniform Lighting for Your Grow.

This measurement reveals how effective the light is by determining how much useful light is absorbed, shown in micromoles per joule (μmol per joule). Essentially, this measures the efficacy of the light: how much usable light is released for the plants for photosynthesis.

Capitalizing on Efficiency, Efficacy

While LPW is very important to take into consideration, especially when determining brightness, micromoles per joule are particularly revealing when examining lights specifically designed for plant growth. Focusing on these qualities can save you money and time. According to Greenhouse Product News, “We do not recommend waiting for better technology. Many growers still operate old, dirty, 400-W HPS lamps, and upgrading to modern lighting technology can reduce electric cost by more than 50 percent. Growers who operate lamps for more than 4 months of the year (2,000 hours or more) and whose electricity prices are above average ($0.12 kWh) could realize payback in two to three years — especially if energy rebates are available.”

We agree with their final conclusion — don’t wait to take advantage of the improved efficiency and efficacy of LED lights.

ProGrowTech to Exhibit at Cannabis Learn in Philadelphia

We’re excited to announce that ProGrowTech is exhibiting at the Cannabis Learn Conference and Expo in Philadelphia April 30 – May 2.

ProGrowTech will join other cannabis industry experts, innovators and researchers to showcase the latest technology, research and operations trends in the cannabis industry. Stop by booth #211-212 to experience our Evolve Series LED fixtures in action, including our new Evolve Compact fixture for home cultivation. Learn how our solutions consistently outperform HPS fixtures, with high-tech features that help commercial operations increase crop quality and yields significantly, all while maintaining industry-leading energy efficiency.

Cannabis Learn provides a forum for cannabis industry insiders to access the latest business tips, regulatory timelines, market trends and best practices for the cannabis industry in the U.S. and key international markets.

Learn more about the event here.

ProGrowTech Taking Pre-orders for Much-Anticipated LED Fixture for Home Cultivators

 

We’re excited to announce the Evolve Compact will hit the market this summer –  ProGrowTech’s first LED lighting fixture for home cultivators. It offers the same commercial-grade technology, features and design as our other Evolve Series fixtures, yet in a smaller frame for a smaller space, priced accordingly.

Unlike many competitive solutions, the Evolve Compact can be hung close to the plant canopy while still providing flawless uniformity, helping home cultivators maximize their spaces, increase energy efficiency and improve the quality and quantity of their harvests.

Pre-orders are available now. Simply visit our store to order your fixtures today. A 20% down payment is required upon checkout, and the remaining balance will be due prior to shipment. You will receive an email confirmation when your fixtures are ready to ship. Shipments will begin in July, first come first serve.

Features include:

  • 360-watt power usage, a savings of 200 watts or more over traditional high pressure sodium (HPS) lighting systems
  • 2-foot by 4-foot dimensions, ideal for tight spaces
  • 5 LED light bars
  • Can be double-stacked in 2-foot by 4-foot racks
  • Industry-leading uniformity ensuring a healthy plant canopy, even at the edges
  • On-board dimming and spectral tuning capabilities, providing plants with the exact light they need during each stage of development
  • Energy-efficient and durable design
  • 100% waterproof

Learn more and pre-order the Evolve Compact here.

ProGrowTech to Feature Evolve Series LED Fixtures at MJBizConNEXT

We’re excited to announce that ProGrowTech is exhibiting at MJBizConNEXT in New Orleans May 9-11.

If you’re attending the event, stop by booth #1323 to meet our team and learn how our innovative LED solutions for commercial horticulture operations are bucking old stereotypes and outperforming HPS systems across the board. We are also thrilled to debut our new Evolve Compact fixture, which brings the same industrial design and high-tech features to home cultivators. See live demos and get a firsthand look at the lights that are poised to take over the industry.

MJBizConNEXT brings together innovators, just like ProGrowTech, that are disrupting the cannabis industry, with a variety of networking and educational opportunities that keep the industry moving forward.

Learn more about the event here.

ProGrowTech Needs Your Vote for California Cannabis Awards

We’re proud to announce that ProGrowTech has been nominated for a California Cannabis Award in the Innovative Product of the Year category.

If you know and love our LED lighting fixtures, we ask for your support! Please vote here by May 4.

Among the many options you have these days, we confidently stand out when it comes to technology, design and service. Here’s how we’re helping you maximize the quality and quantity of your harvests:

  • Flawless uniformity
  • On-board dimming and spectral tuning
  • 100% waterproof – IP66 certified
  • Vertical racking capabilities
  • Durable, industrial design

The California Cannabis Awards recognize top companies, entrepreneurs and advocates in the cannabis industry. Nominees include leaders in cannabis technology, cultivation, law, distribution and more. Winners are chosen through online voting and will be honored at an event on May 18 in Los Angeles.

Invest in Uniformity: How LED Lights Can Offer Superior Uniform Lighting for Your Grow

While sustainability and adjustability are often the driving reasons for switching to LED lights, there is another benefit that deserves some attention: uniformity.

Uniformity, in this particular context, refers to an even amount of light distributed across a plant canopy. With effective lighting systems, the required amount of light for photosynthesis is delivered evenly to each plant. Light uniformity allows crops to flourish—this benefit does not only encourage faster growth, but also a healthier, high-quality harvest. Today, uniformity simply cannot be sacrificed.

One of the best aspects of LED lights is their ability to run cool with sustained high performance. Distance from the plant itself is the biggest detriment to uniformity; with LED lights, the bulb can be much closer to the plant than older HPS lights, without risking burn. The difference between a ProGrowTech light mounted at 6” compared to 18” can be as much as 20 percent!

It is also imperative to mention the increased efficiency of cooler lights. This aspect of LED can save time and energy: you can focus on the quality of the plants, not just the quality of your air conditioning. Cooler temps also mean less water evaporation and your plants will better retain moisture. Furthermore, it’s important to understand some of the language behind uniformity. Deciphering acronyms such as PAR, PPF and PPFD will help horticulturalists better understand the interaction between lighting technology, plants, and how this affects uniformity. This knowledge may empower them in determining which lights are most suitable for their grow.

  • PAR: Photosynthetic Active Radiation – PAR is sometimes misunderstood as a measurement, such as kilos or ounces. Rather, it is the type of light that is possible for plants to absorb for photosynthesis. This light is actualized in wavelengths seen between 400 to 700 nanometers.
  • PPF: Photosynthetic Photon Flux – This term refers to the amount of PAR released by a light source each second, measured in moles per second (μmol/s). In other words, this is the amount of useful light given off by the lighting system at hand. This measurement truly speaks to the efficiency of a lighting system. 
  • PPFD: Photosynthetic Flux Density  PPFD is also measured in moles, but reveals the amount of useful light (PAR) that falls on the individual plant at any given second. It is important to clarify what area of space is taken into consideration. For example, the Evolve EV360 ProGrowTech lights deliver up to 450 µmol/m2 PPFD delivered in a 4’x4’ lighting pattern, translating to superior uniformity.

Given these points, the quality of the lighting technology and the amount of light absorbed by the plant contribute to uniformity. LED lights have a true advantage because of their ability to support consistent PAR and with efficient design, maintain high PPFD. In the end, uniformity can play an integral role to a successful grow facility and should absolutely be taken into consideration when investing in LED lights.

Andrew Myers Discusses the Future of LED Horticulture Lighting on Top Industry Podcast

ProGrowTech Co-founder and CEO Andrew Myers shared insights on the future of the horticultural lighting industry on the Get a Grip on Lighting podcast.

Andrew discussed how LED is revolutionizing indoor horticultural, noting that the industry is growing exponentially, especially in the cannabis space. He predicted that this growth will soon expand to the food production market as well, due to energy efficiency and LED rebates in certain states.

Get a Grip on Lighting provides a platform for lighting experts to discuss pressing issues and trends affecting the industry.

Listen to the full interview here.

The Future of LED: A Look at the Potential Effects of LED Lighting on the World of Horticulture

Many have realized that LEDs are today’s best option when it comes to lighting. But what might LED tech look like 5 years down the road? Or in 10 years? Here are just few reasons why you should invest in LED now and thank yourself later.

Increasing Popularity and Lower Costs

LEDs are now more affordable than ever. A few years ago, the price difference between CFL and LED bulbs was painfully noticeable. Today, that gap has gotten much smaller, and it will continue to shrink as demand for LEDs grow. At ProGrowTech, we are willing to discuss potential routes to pay for your LEDs.

There are multiple reasons behind LEDs exponential popularity among horticulturists. Just to give you an idea as to how popular this revolutionary lighting technology has become: LED lights only contributed to 3 percent of installations in 2014. In 2016, this percentage jumped to just over 12 percent. In 2018, we’re betting these numbers will be even higher. Additionally, LEDs were adopted into mainstream use quickly and with more success when compared to other eco-friendly technology, such as hybrid cars and solar energy. Today, LEDs offer the horticulturalist — whether you’re an individual or a full-fledged grow facility — unmatched efficiency and cutting-edge technology.

Sustainability

We are facing a more crowded world with less resources. There are serious concerns regarding providing enough water and food to support projected populations. That’s where LED lights play an extremely important role—providing enough light to sustain high-quality crops in indoor facilities. LED lights are able to adjust how quickly a plant grows, how it produces fruit or flower, and even encourage the development of nutrients. This adaptability makes LEDs one of the most valuable investments for anyone involved in agriculture. In addition, LED lights require less energy and run cooler than their counterparts—you’ll be saving money on both electricity and water.

It’s also important to highlight the ability to vertically rack LED lights. This means you can fit more plants into fewer square feet by taking advantage of the vertical space — perfect for the agriculturalist looking to produce a larger harvest, but has concerns about time and room. ProGrowTech lights are able to be vertically stacked to ensure your high-density crops get the lights they need.

Controlled Environment

One of the central aspects of climate change—the biggest challenge facing the next generation of agriculturalists—is unpredictable weather. This means harvests may be difficult to predict. A surprise frost and intense heat can ruin months of labor. That’s why many growers are turning to indoor facilities. Of course, one of the first things missing in an indoor grow is sunlight. LEDs are the closest replica to natural sunlight: They are able to be adjusted to mimic minute shifts in outdoor light, and replicate the full light spectrum. LEDs put the power back into the hands of the horticulturalist.

Consistent Improvement with Research

LEDs hold a ton of potential. As we mentioned above, they have steadily increased in popularity and will likely continue along that trend in the coming years. Researchers continue to diligently study the benefits of LED how and they can improve their structure to better fit crop needs.

One of the buzziest finds of the last year is the incorporation of perovskites—self-assembling nanoparticles to build the LED. It sounds like something straight out of a science fiction novel, but it’s true. These nanoparticles are increasingly being used across all industries, and have also received some attention in regard to solar cells. Using perovskites for LEDs may result in increased efficiency, durability and lower prices.

According to Physics.org, “[Researchers at Princeton] are exploring perovskites as a potential lower-cost alternative to gallium nitride (GaN) and other materials used in LED manufacturing. Lower-cost LEDs would speed up the acceptance rate of the technology, reducing energy use and environmental impacts.”

Lighting the Way

LED is the lighting technology of the future. As we grapple with some of the greatest concerns facing our society, it is imperative to invest in efficient and time-saving technology. LED technology can have an enormous impact on agriculture and has already revolutionized the way we understand and grow our plants.

HollyWeed™ North Cannabis, Inc. & TerraCube™ International, Inc. Select ProGrowTech as Approved Lighting Supplier for Self-contained Grow Systems, Available for Commercial and Consumer Markets

We’re proud to announce that ProGrowTech is the approved lighting supplier of Canada-based HollyWeed™ North Cannabis, Inc. and TerraCube™ International, Inc., a manufacturer of commercial, stackable cleanroom technology designed for cultivators who need maximum control of the grow environment.

TerraCube™ units allow growers to precisely regulate the internal environment. The modular units are fully automated, self-cleaning, remotely controlled and are easily scalable for large cultivation operations. ProGrowTech LED lighting takes that control one step further, with industry leading uniformity and controls that help growers maximize the quality and quantity of their harvests.

“TerraCube™ and ProGrowTech are committed to innovating in the indoor horticulture space, so this relationship was a no-brainer,” said ProGrowTech CEO Andrew Myers. “We’re proud to include our LED technology in a solution that allows growers to maximize product consistency and comply with even the most stringent industry regulations.”

TerraCube™ offers a 40-foot unit for commercial growers and an 8’X8’ MiniCube™ unit designed for home cultivation. ProGrowTech manufactures a custom lighting solution for TerraCube™ units that is based on the Evolve Series fixtures. The 40-foot unit houses the equivalent of 12 EV700 fixtures.

TerraCube™ units are available on a monthly lease basis, which reduces the startup capital needed for smaller operations and allows larger, commercial operations to scale effectively.

Learn more about TerraCube here.