- Geometry: Since the radiation emitted by the plant is inversely proportional to the square of the distance between the radiation source and the plant, it is best to set the light source near the plant. LED sources allow it because they are colder compared to other light sources, which can burn the plant if they are at a short distance.
- Efficiency: The electrical efficiency of LED lights is much higher than low-cost and often used fluorescent lamps, thus saving energy.
- Duration: By definition, the LED lifetime is determined by the time period after which the flux decreases to 70% of its initial value and this period is about 50,000 h, which is far more than the usual life span of fluorescent sources.
- Spectrum Quality: The quality of the spectrum of carefully selected LED sources can have dramatic effects on the anatomy (structure) of the plant, its morphology (shape) and development. A carefully selected spectrum can achieve an optimal balance between energy efficiency and lighting quality.
- Small dimensions: It is possible to set the light source in a large space.
Some benefits with LED technology are certainly:
- Significant savings in electricity consumption of around 50%
- Less nutrient addition for plants
- It is safe to place the source at any distance from the plant
- Greater control of breeders over plant morphology
New LED technology has the potential to fully meet the requirements of plants in terms of light intensity and wavelength range, enabling specific wavelengths to be enriched, supplying plants with the amount and quality of light necessary for different stages of development. Therefore, biomass and metabolic products of such cultivated plants can be altered.
The effect of LED lighting has been sufficiently studied because it represents a huge biotechnological and economic potential - for biofuels, in the pharmaceutical industry, for food additives and in cosmetics.
Production of a sufficient amount of quality food for nine billion people, as envisaged by 2050, is a major challenge in the conditions of global climate change. Unlike outdoor agriculture, indoor seedlings are based on new light sources such as LEDs because they have the potential to stimulate plant growth, with drastic reductions in electricity consumption.