Designing an HVAC System for Growth

Updated: Dec 4, 2019

Source: Trane

Green plants, such as lettuce, cannabis, kale, basil, and other crops, are being grown by indoor agriculture producers around the world. The industry is growing rapidly for a variety of reasons. The ability to grow fresh foods, year-round, in areas where harsh winters or scorching desert heat prohibit planting outside, is one of the compelling reasons to bring crops indoors.

Ever try farming in a desert or during the winter? Why not? Here's how:

With indoor agriculture, foods can also be grown locally, which shortens transport time, helping to increase freshness and reduce spoilage. And while it might sound like a simple solution to solve some of the world’s food production issues, indoor agriculture isn’t without its challenges. Maintaining an optimal environment is just as important when plants are grown indoors as when they are outside.

Zoning In On Specific Needs and Functions

All plants have basic needs including nutrients, minerals, vitamins, water, oxygen, and carbon dioxide (CO2). With these needs satisfied and the right temperature, optimal humidity, and correct lighting conditions, plants can thrive. But some plants need even more stringent control of artificial light to enable them to mature, fruit and seed properly. Others specify a tight temperature tolerance in order to flourish.

While optimal conditions can vary from plant to plant, just as they do for human occupants, the indoor agriculture building might require multiple zones to accommodate the growing of different crops, and conducting varied functions such as drying, curing, trimming, and processing.