Vertical Farming

This week Reactions is checking out the chemistry that makes vertical farms possible. There’s a lot of science that goes on behind this agricultural trend. As humans learned to farm, we arranged plants outside in horizontal fields, and invented irrigation and fertilizer to grow bumper crops. But with modern technology and farmers’ cleverness, we can now stack those fields vertically, just as we stacked housing to make apartment buildings. Moving plants indoors has many benefits: Plants are not at the mercy of weather, less wilderness is cleared for farmland, and it’s easier to control the runoff of fertilizer and pesticides. But the choice of lighting can make or break the cost of a vertical farm and affect how long it might take for urban agriculture to blossom.

For more on vertical farming, check out this article from ChemMatters:

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Sam Lemonick

Narrator/Scientific Consultant:
Darcy Gentleman, Ph.D.

Executive Producer:
Adam Dylewski

Video Producer:
Sean Parsons

Scientific consultants:
Kyle Nackers
Dickson Despommier, Ph.D.
Alison Le

Ever wonder why dogs sniff each others’ butts? Or how Adderall works? Or whether it’s OK to pee in the pool? We’ve got you covered: Reactions a web series about the chemistry that surrounds you every day.

Reactions is produced by the American Chemical Society.

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