Welcome to Project LAMP!
LAMP stands for lighting approaches to maximize profits. We are a research and outreach project funded by the USDA NIFA SCRI (award 2018-51181-28365) with the goal of maximizing profits by improving lighting systems used in controlled environment agriculture (CEA).
Helping Controlled Environment Agriculture to Maximize Profits
CEA (greenhouses and plant factories) can help meet the challenge of more intensive, profitable, and sustainable specialty crop production. The greenhouse industry is a well-established and important component of US agriculture, with a 2015 farm-gate value of ~$6.5 billion. For efficient year-round production in greenhouses, supplemental light is often beneficial, but the expenses can be high. The electricity required for supplemental lighting in greenhouses can account for up to 20-30% of variable costs.
Plant factories, an emerging technology where plants are grown indoors, provide total control over environmental conditions, but production relies entirely on electric lighting. Electric lighting and air-conditioning combined can account for 50-60% of the variable costs in plant factories.
A recent Department of Energy report estimated the total annual costs of providing supplemental lighting in controlled environment agriculture to be ~$600,000,000/year in the US. More cost-effective lighting approaches will have a major impact on the sustainability and profitability of controlled environment agriculture (greenhouses and plant factories), reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, and thus provide benefits for the controlled environment agriculture industry, society, and the environment.
We will help growers get more value out of their lighting systems by providing horticultural and economical information and tools to manage the lights for optimal crop growth and quality and to maximize the return on investment.