Light Emitting Diode (LED)

Last updated: June 16, 2021

What Does Light Emitting Diode (LED) Mean?

A light emitting diode (LED) is a small electroluminescent light. LEDs do not burn a filament, but instead pass light through semiconductors to create their spectrum.

LED lights have been around for more than 50 years for general use, however they have risen in popularity as grow lights within the field of horticulture and cannabis cultivation, especially for indoor farming and growrooms.

LED grow lights in a cannabis growroom


Maximum Yield Explains Light Emitting Diode (LED)

In relation to horticulture, LEDs are very popular because they offer many benefits over traditional grow lights. One major benefit over traditional lighting is that LED lights have a much longer lifespan. This is very important for greenhouses or other indoor growing spaces where constant light is needed.

LEDs uses approximately 60 to 90 per cent less energy than other grow light options like high-intensity discharge (HID) lights, which include high-pressure sodium and metal halides. Some growers who have switched to LEDs report that their plants typically produce a greater yield than plants grown using high intensity discharge (HID) grow lights.

LED grow lights can last up to 100,000 hours, which far surpasses the lifespan of other types of grow lights, therefore reducing maintenance time and cost. Another crucial benefit is that LEDs put out far less heat than traditional lighting methods, which is important because too much heat can damage plants. Since LED grow lights remain cool, they can also be placed close to the plants, which provide the grower with a greater ability to control the light’s spread.

LEDs are also beneficial when growers need a particular wavelength of light to be emitted. Most plants flourish under both red and blue light, however, different plants require different amounts of the red and blue wavelengths, which different color LEDs can provide.

Previous LED lighting systems only had the red and green light spectrums. The lights did not feature the blue light spectrum required to grow plants. In 2014, Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura were awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for creating LEDs that featured the crucial blue light diode needed to create the all-around efficient light-emitting diodes needed for vegetative growth in growrooms, greenhouses, and with hydroponic growth methods.


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