Are you interested in sustainable agriculture and the use of technology to enhance food production? In this startup showcase, we introduce Lambda Energy, a UK-based company working on advanced materials R&D for the AgTech sector. With its innovative approach to engineering light, Lambda Energy is on a mission to revolutionize plant growth and increase crop yields.
Who is Lambda Energy?
Lambda Energy is a materials science company with a focus on innovative solutions for agriculture and renewable energy. Based in Cambridge, UK, the company uses advanced materials to engineer light and optimize its effects on living organisms and devices. With its team of materials scientists and engineers, Lambda Energy is developing unique photo-active materials that can increase crop yields, enhance solar energy conversion efficiency, and reduce waste in various industries.
Lambda Energy’s AgTech arm
One of Lambda Energy’s most exciting projects is its AgTech arm, Lambda Agri. This department is focused on developing advanced materials that can improve plant growth and increase crop yields. Plants have evolved over millions of years, but they’re not optimized for maximum food production, especially in commercial farming environments. Lambda Agri’s solution is to create photo-active films that can be used in greenhouses or polytunnels to enhance the quality of incoming light and optimize the blue to red ratio for photosynthetic processes.
How does it work?
Lambda’s photo-active films absorb the least important frequencies of sunlight and re-emit red light, which is essential for plant growth. The film’s active material requires no electricity to function, which reduces the cost of electrical lighting in greenhouses significantly. By emitting converted light in all directions, the active film enables more light to penetrate the plant canopy and reach the leaves below. The scattered light alone can increase crop yields by 15%. The Lambda materials further convert UV light, thereby decreasing the UV damage to plastics used in polytunnels and greenhouse glazing, leading to lower plastic waste and more sustainable approaches to farming.
Using quantum cutting technology to enhance solar energy conversion efficiency
Lambda Energy’s active materials can also be applied to solar cells to enhance their efficiency by up to 16%. Silicon solar cells are efficient at converting near-infrared light into electricity but not visible light. By using Lambda’s advanced materials, the cells can perform quantum cutting, converting UV/blue light into two near-infrared photons, thereby increasing cell efficiency.
Funding and Future Plans
Lambda Energy is currently seeking £1m to match funding from its 750k Energy Entrepreneurs grant. The funds will be used to increase the number of chemists in the team, fund the pre-commercial prototype, and scale-up with industrial partners. Lambda Energy plans to disrupt the AgTech industry with its innovative approach to plant growth and crop yields. By developing advanced materials that can optimize light, increase energy efficiency, and reduce waste, Lambda is on the path to a more sustainable future.
Lambda Energy’s innovative approach to using advanced materials to revolutionize plant growth and enhance solar energy conversion is a sign of the future. If you’re interested in sustainability and AgTech, keep an eye on this exciting company in the years to come.
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