Hydroponic Technologies

Growing Gears designs and builds custom programs that integrate the use of advanced hydroponic technologies and specializes in designing hydroponic labs for companies, institutions, and other organizations.  Hydroponic systems can be used to grow fruits and vegetables for food production and even ornamental plants and flowers for aesthetic indoor landscapes.  A benefit of hydroponic technologies is they allow for fruits and vegetables to be grown locally and sustainably using up to 96% less water and less space than traditional agriculture.  These technologies can provide sustainable agriculture in remote locations where natural resources are scarce and in highly populated urban locations where land is limited.

Examples of Hydroponics Topics

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Hydroponics is the process of growing plants in a nutrient solution without soil.  There are a variety of Hydroponic Technologies available that can be used to grow plants in a soilless environment including Nutrient Film Technique (NFT), Deep Flow Technique (DFT), Aquaponics, and Aeroponics.  Although each of these methods differ from one another, they each rely on supplying the growing plants with a solution containing the necessary nutrients plants typically receive from soil.

 

When seeds are planted in soil, the soil keeps the seeds in place while they germinate and begin to sprout.  In a soilless environment, the seeds are planted in a Growing Medium to help keep the growing plants in place.  Growing mediums, also called growing substrates, come in many varieties of materials including coconut fiber, peat moss, gravel, expanded clay aggregate, rockwool, vermiculite, and foam sponges.

 

Plants need light, water, and nutrients for growth.  Plants use light for photosynthesis, the process by which plants generate their own food.  When plants receive light, the green pigment in their leaves, called chlorophyll, causes the plant to absorb energy.  Plants use that energy to convert carbon dioxide and water into glucose, the sugars it uses for food.  In addition to light and water, plants need nutrients for proper growth.  There are seventeen essential nutrients for plant health including nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus.

 

There are a wide variety of plants that can be grown hydroponically from leafy greens to ornamental plants.  Leafy green plants, such as lettuce, grow very well in hydroponic environments because of their extremely high water content.  In addition, herbs such as basil, mint, dill, lemon balm, oregano, and lavender and fruits such as strawberries, cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, and bell peppers can be grown in hydroponic systems.  Ornamental plants that can be grown include Boston fern, selaginella, begonia, and aloe.

 
Hydroponics

Lights for Indoor Growing

Artificial lighting is a necessary component to container farms and other indoor growing environments that do not have access to natural sunlight.  There are a variety of artificial lighting technologies that are able to provide a wide spectrum of light for growing plants.  LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, are an energy efficient source of light capable of providing the lighting needs of many plant varieties.  In addition, LED lights can be customized to provide a specific spectrum of light to give plants the optimum lighting they need for different stages of the plant growth cycle.

Hydroponics

Culinary and Research Applications

Hydroponic technologies continue to advance and transform how food is grown. We design and install research and development labs that allow for experimentation with various growing techniques, lighting applications, and seed varieties to achieve specific and even unexpected outcomes. In addition, our hydroponic labs can be integrated into culinary programs where participants can grow and experiment with specific produce, including specialty foods that are typically harder to access due to seasonality and price.

Hydroponics

Greenhouse Hydroponics

Crops grown hydroponically inside of greenhouses are able to utilize natural sunlight for plant growth.  When using natural light, greenhouse crops can be grown in single layers or in pyramid forms.  Supplemental artificial light can be used to enhance growth or allow for stacked growing configurations.  In addition, electricity needs for greenhouse hydroponics can be provided by solar energy.  Some unique thin-film solar technologies allow high infrared and red light to transmit through the solar module, making it a sustainable technology for use in greenhouse roofing structures.

Video: Greenhouse Science Lab

This video displays a Greenhouse Science Lab that we have developed as an example of an immersive environment featuring hydroponic and advanced technologies.  Powered by renewable energy and designed to engage, this Science Lab is a simulated environment that can be built as well as visited virtually through advanced camera technology and virtual and augmented reality.

Hydroponics

Advanced Hydroponics for STEM Education

By: Amber Bosket

This interactive, digital book teaches advanced hydroponics through STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) subjects such as plant biology, chemistry, and physics.  Designed for use with OPCOM Farm hydroponic systems, this STEM resource introduces readers to the science behind hydroponic technologies to provide workforce skills needed for future high-tech jobs.

Video: "Advanced Hydroponics for STEM Education"

The digital book "Advanced Hydroponics for STEM Education" is an example of STEM-based, interactive content for a touchscreen interface.  This video displays the interactive features and content within the book.  Designed for the iPad, its engaging, multi-touch features deliver a "hands-on" educational experience.

About Us


Growing Gears provides scientific and technology integration services for the development of a highly-skilled, industry-grade workforce. We design and install high-tech learning labs using advanced technologies and innovative solutions relevant to modernizations in the workplace. We also develop advanced training programs for technical institutions, colleges, universities, companies, organizations, and government agencies that are looking to reduce the skills gap that exists between workplace innovations and the workforce.

We specialize in fields such as 3D modeling and 3D printing, virtual and augmented reality, hydroponics and advanced agriculture, computer science and coding, robotics, and renewable energy. Our mission is to strengthen and support the advancement of a high-tech workforce in a globally-competitive economy.

Contact Us


Office: (877) 355-9950

Email: contact@growinggears.com

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