Energy Conversion Options for Energy-efficient Controlled Environment Agriculture

in HortScience
View More View Less
  • 1 Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, 14853

One of the deterrents to the commercial adoption of controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) on a broad scale is the significant energy cost for lighting and thermal environmental control. Advances in energy conversion technologies, such as internal combustion engines (ICs), microturbines and fuel cells, offer the potential for combined heat and power (CHP) systems, which can be matched with the needs of CEA to reduce fossil-based fuels consumption. A principal concept delineated is that an integrated entrepreneurial approach to create business and community partnerships can enhance the value of energy produced (both electrical and heat). Energy production data from a commercial dairy farm is contrasted with energy use data from two greenhouse operations with varying energy-input requirements. Biogass produced from a 500-cow dairy combined with a 250-kW fuel cell could meet nearly all of the energy needs of both the dairy and an energy-intensive 740-m2 CEA greenhouse lettuce facility. The data suggest CEA greenhouses and other closely compatible enterprises can be developed to significantly alter agriculture, as we have known it.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 81 22 2
PDF Downloads 76 34 4