Finland: Large scale solar power test at Robbe´s Little Garden

Robbe´s Little Garden, based in Southern Finland, strives to develop and research the sustainability as well as the economic- and practical viability of vertical farming. In order to achieve our goals, we have tackled the issue from multiple points of view.

We have installed a 330 kWp -solar photovoltaic array to power our LED-lit vertical greenhouses. We are currently researching the cost-efficiency of solar PV use in Finnish greenhouses.

The solar PV is designed to optimize energy use in the summer daytime. This way, the production in the vertical farm is able to fully rely on solar power during the summer months. The fluctuating, sometimes high, summertime energy prices are in this way avoided.

In the research project, Robbe´s Little Garden will test different light periods and intensities. The project will add knowledge of the crucial energy-saving options that vertical farms need. In vertical farms, LEDs and the cooling system require a lot of energy. The large-scale R&D project will prepare Robbe´s Little Garden for future challenges with rising energy prices.

As a significant part of our local energy system, we take part in a national frequency containment reserve (FCR-D), where our task is to help balance the frequency fluctuations within the grid. In this field, we are researching the compatibility of vertical farms as well as medium-sized solar PV arrays with such reserve services.

At Robbe’s, we acknowledge that all greenhouse products require unique light programs. Therefore, we are researching the economic viability of spot market-priced electricity with both traditional- and vertical farming.

We at Robbe`s believe that doing our part to help optimize the local energy system is very important from a corporate social responsibility perspective. “As a grower, you have to have a good knowledge of all the details involved in farming. The result of the project will give us again a huge advantage compared to the competitors. Energy efficiency together with the production efficiency is crucial for any vertical farm.” - Robert Jordas, CEO of Robbe´s Little Garden. Robbe´s Little Garden is a leading CEA company in Northern Europe. The technology focuses on feasible solutions for both vertical farming and closed environment greenhouses.

For more information: 
Robert Jordas, Owner 
Robbe’s Little Garden 

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