Showa Denko (SDK) (TOKYO: 4004) announces that its LED-based plant factory (indoor farming) unit named “SHIGYO® Unit” has been adopted in a large-scale plant factory in Tendo City, Yamagata Prefecture. The plant factory is operated by ENDO CORPORATION which is led by President Yasuhiko Endo and headquartered in Yamagata City, Yamagata Prefecture.
SHIGYO® Unit, which is adopted this time, is an all-in-one indoor plant factory system which provides optimum environment for plant growth, packaging all necessary technology and equipment for plant cultivation including our original high-speed plant growth technology ;SHIGYO® Method, our proprietary LED lighting equipment designed to emit optimum light for SHIGYO® Method, and aluminum racks for plant cultivation.
SHIGYO® Unit also includes after-sale technical support such as plant cultivation manuals, and is an ideal system for users to start plant factory as a new business.
ENDO CORPORATION had been investigating feasibility of its entry into the plant factory business since 2012, and conducted a field test of plant cultivation with SHIGYO® Method in 2013. As the results of the test, the company successfully harvested a variety of quality vegetables, and confirmed profitability of the plant factory with SHIGYO® Method.
Consequently, the company decided to construct a plant factory which has the area of about 2,000 m2 for plant cultivation, and a daily harvest of about 4,000 plants. The new factory will be completed in September 2014, and start operation in the following October.
Aiming to promote plant factories which realize stable supply of safe food, SDK provides business enterprises considering new entry into plant factory business with various support programs.
Moreover, to respond to needs for demonstration experiment of plant factory, SDK markets small scale “SHIGYO® Unit” and “SHIGYO® Container” which is a containerized plant factory system for outdoor installation. SDK will demonstrate small scale “SHIGYO® Unit” and “SHIGYO® Container” for demonstration experiment at “the Agricultural Business Solution Exhibition in Smart Community Japan 2014,” which is to be held at Tokyo Big Sight from June 18 to June 20.
[General outline of SHIGYO® Unit]
1) SHIGYO® Method: a high-speed plant growth technology
SHIGYO® Method, which is a plant growth technology developed jointly by SDK and Yamaguchi University, accelerates the growth of plant at LED-based facilities by irradiating light with optimum wavelengths and intensity in consideration of the kind of plant and growing stages.
2) LED lighting equipment for plant growth
This LED lighting equipment contains SDK’s proprietary LED chips that emit deep-red light with the wavelengths of 660 nm (optimum light for plant’s photosynthesis) at the world’s highest level of efficiency* and LED chips that emit blue light.
The equipment generates less heat than a fluorescent light with equivalent brightness, saves electricity consumption for lighting and air-conditioning. It can easily change the intensity of deep-red and blue light in accordance with the lighting program of SHIGYO® Method.
3) Aluminum racks for plant cultivation
The racks are specialized for plant cultivation in plant factories, composed of light-weight anodized aluminum frames which are rust-resistant. They feature attachments with built-in reflectors that realize optimum layout of LED lighting equipment to generate uniform irradiation.
They are equipped with cassette type LED lights and water tanks (pools) for hydroponics, and both of them are removable for easy maintenance.
4) Heat-insulating panels
These panels have heat-insulating properties necessary for completely closed plant factory, and airtightness to prevent intrusion of bacteria, fungi and insect pests. SHIGYO® Unit features covering of ceilings and walls of plant factories with these heat-insulating panels, and realizes optimum heat-insulation and airtightness.
5) Culture fluid circulator (option)
This is a circulator that automatically delivers culture fluid (liquid fertilizer) to plants.
6) Air conditioners (option)
Air conditioners maintain optimum temperature, humidity and CO2 density.
7) Air shower (option)
This is a dust remover to prevent carrying in of sand and dust.