What is needed for vertical farming?

What is required for vertical farming?

Vertical farming equipment

Vertical farming is a way to grow and harvest crops on vertical shelves or towers instead of traditional, horizontal farming. Vertical farmers can grow significantly more food on the same land. Vertical farming techniques require temperature, light and humidity control to be successful.

How does vertical farming work?

The goal of vertical farming is to grow trees in the same space used for production. Farmers grow food in areas that provide the most efficient conditions for their crops.

The roots of vertical farming go back to Japanese Buddhist monks. These monks lived in wooden monasteries in a vertical manner to save space. In traditional Japanese temples, monks grow crops such as soybeans, barley and rice. While traditional crops require a large amount of land, vertical farming allows a small amount of space to be used. In vertical farming, crops are grown on soil towers, which can be as high as 100 feet. Earthen towers are attached to walls, floors and roofs, creating a structure to keep the soil stable and prevent it from rotting in the building structure.

Vertical farming methods

Vertical farming relies on a number of technologies that make it possible to farm on vertical shelves. Technology can be divided into three components.

Fertilizer

Fertilizer is a mixture of nutrients that help plants grow. Farmers apply less fertilizer to the soil of the bastion to promote growth. Fertilizer is a chemical compound that can come in the form of a liquid fertilizer, in which a substance like phosphorus dissolves. In vertical farming, farmers often use fish and other decomposed parts of animals to make manure for plants. Farmers use nutrients to nourish plants.

Water

Water is the life blood of plants. Farmers use both water and electricity to keep the plants hydrated. Farmers pump water into the towers or use water that comes with fertilizer. This technology is known as irrigation.

Temperature control

Many vertical farms are kept warm to help the crops grow. Some farmers use sunlight or heat to warm the soil. In most cases, the temperature is controlled by a series of water circulating tubes from the tower. Using this technique, the farmer can control the temperature through a fan that can move air through the tube. Fans can work in combination with other technologies, such as a system that uses sensors to automatically control the temperature.

 LEDs

A vertical field that relies on light-emitting diodes can be constructed using small lamps and placed on top of the crop. These lamps mimic sunlight, and they often use photovoltaic cells to produce light. They are also known as plant lamps. The light emitted by these lamps is similar to that of sunlight and its intensity is higher than that of sunlight.

Energy efficiency

Vertical farming relies heavily on electrical energy. Usually, these farms do not use much electricity, though compared to large farms that rely on other energy sources such as solar energy. Energy used in vertical farming methods is a type of energy that can be used in urban areas. Using less energy, the efficiency of vertical fields is higher, i.e. less power is required to produce the same amount of food.

Growing food

One of the most common methods of growing crops in vertical farming is using aquaponics. This process combines the benefits of traditional farming and hydroponics. Vertical fields are kept in a space with limited natural sunlight. Crop seedlings are planted on one side of the room and a fish tank on the other side of the room. As fish eat food, they convert it into waste and that waste is used to fertilize plants. Plants and fish feed on both sides. This is known as a closed loop system. In some vertical fields this method combines with LED lights and other systems to create healthy crops.

Hydroponic

Hydroponics is also used in vertical fields. Instead of a fish tank, this method uses minerals and synthetics to supply nutrients to the plants. The most common way to supply nutrients to plants is to use airtight containers. In this type of vertical farming the containers are made of steel or fiberglass.

Water is used to grow plants in the system. Minerals are added to the water so that the plants can grow. The water is also cleaned before adding vegetables or fruits to the system. The misting system is used to humidify the air around the trees. The water in the air is then converted into water that plants can use. Water from the air is also used to cool the plants, which prevents them from overheating in the hot environment of the vertical field.

Water, fertilizers and plant hormones are the main ingredients for making fruits or vegetables. Plants are also grown in a mixture of different types of fertilizers. The air in the airtight container is often rotated to provide good quality air to the plants. The air is clean because it has less impurities.

Hydroponic methods of vertical farming

Hydroponics is a widely used method in vertical farming. Some companies will combine this method with other technologies, such as LED lights and other systems. Another hydroponic vertical farm has been developed by Dab Food Research Company called Rabo Foods. This method was developed to enable plants to grow in an environmentally-friendly way without the need for artificial lighting.

This vertical field has 10 vertical towers in which different levels of hydroponic methods were used. At the top of the tower, there is an air exchange system that allows air to flow through the building. Below the air exchange, there are two vertical towers that use automatic misting systems to provide air humidity to the trees. A nutrient misting system was used to provide a constant water supply to the plants.

Greenwave developed another type of vertical farm. This farm is airtight. It was designed to grow a variety of vegetables in a greenhouse, even in bad weather. Using the greenwave vertical farming method, no soil is required and only plants and water are used to grow vegetables.

Vertical farming without air and water

Airtight vertical fields are constructed with different structures so that air can flow through them while taking crops. This method is efficient in terms of using less space and cost, which makes it very suitable for urban environment. Dubai has a vertical greenhouse built with airtight vertical farming technology.

The vertical field has three levels. The first level is the greenhouse which is used for growing leaves. The second level is the misting system which helps to reach the water and nutrients. The last level is the ventilation system which helps in controlled air circulation.

Using the airtight vertical farming method, it is possible to grow crops at a very high level. The high temperature and humidity that the system provides is enough to help rapid growth.

The principle is the same as in an airtight system in a waterless vertical field, but the system uses less water. This means that vertical fields can be planted in dry areas of the city.

Vertical farming in the future

Vertical farming is still very young and developed, as people are still trying to discover its efficiency and benefits.

However, even though it is growing in cities, vertical farming is still appropriate and can be useful. With the advancement of technology it has become much easier to grow healthy vegetables and other products and it will be beneficial for your health.

Another great feature about vertical farming is that in the future it can be used to grow crops and even for food supplements. This type of farming is used to grow micro-algae in closed space or to use micro-algae to fertilize tomatoes.

With future developments, this technology can be used to reduce the use of chemicals and pesticides in agriculture.

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