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Education for Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA)

Our focus is on education, and we offer a 25% Educational Discount on our systems to qualified institutions for K-12 controlled environment agriculture (CEA) education, community college applied technology, and university research. Our goal is to put modular CEA systems within reach of those educational institutions, individuals, restaurants, garden supply centers, and commercial farmers.

Here’s the official product release information, and links to the web site where it is published. There are two products based primarily on the height of the plant that the farmer wants to grow: the Microgreens Maker with 14” layers in a 7’ rack, and the Tomato Maker with a single layer in a 7’ rack: Click Here for Products

Given that a farmer is able to grow microgreens in a 10”x20” tray and get a couple of pounds yield every week, we may pack 3 of those trays into one layer, stack 4 layers in one rack, and yield 24 pounds per system per week of cilantro microgreens that currently sell for $80 per pound. That’s $2,000 per week revenue from a $4,000 system that draws less than 500W. By measuring the photons from the LEDs with a quantum light meter, one may dial in the exact amount of light that a plant needs with 95% efficiency, and reduce the power bill for the farmer. Our continued research and development in LED lighting efficiency addresses the most expensive part of monthly operating costs for a farmer – the power bill. The ultimate objective is to use solar and geothermal technology to operate systems off the grid with net zero energy.

Microgreens Maker

MM432 Microgreens Maker kit for Controlled EnvironmentAgriculture (CEA) – An easily assembled modular closed-loop growth system readily adjusted and programmed to optimize growth of microgreens and clones for food production, education, research, and medical purposes. The controller is a WiFi 2.4 GHz Smart Power Strip Surge Protector that uses the Jinvoo app for Remote Control from a Mobile Device with individual timers for 4 outlets plus USB. Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatible. Includes the controller, rack, pans, lights, and pump.

  • Grow Areas  – 4 of 31″x31″x3″ pans
  • Base Pan for Sump  32″x32″x9″
  • Rack – 7′ channel 1-5/8″ legs with 24″ brackets
  • LEDs – 400 W 3500 K (100W each pan spaced 14” apart)
  • Power Efficiency 95%
  • Power – 500 W maximum NEMA 5-15P 120 VAC GFCI
  • Wiring for LEDs – 20 AWG 2-wire low voltage DC
  • Connectors for LEDs – WAGO tool-less lever nuts
  • 1 year Limited Warranty

Tomato Maker

TM432 Tomato Maker kit for Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) – An easily assembled modular closed-loop growth system readily adjusted and programmed to optimize growth of tomatoes and other tall plants for food production, education, research, and medical purposes. The controller is a WiFi 2.4 GHz Smart Power Strip Surge Protector that uses the Jinvoo app for Remote Control from a Mobile Device with individual timers for 4 outlets plus USB. Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatible. Includes the controller, rack, pans, lights, and pump.

  • Grow Area and Base Pan for Sump – 32″x32″x9″
  • Rack – 7′ channel 1-5/8″ legs with 24″ brackets
  • LED – 400 W 3500 K at 6’ height
  • Power Efficiency – 95%
  • Power – 500 W maximum NEMA 5-15P 120 VAC GFCI
  • Wiring for LEDs – 20 AWG 2-wire low voltage DC
  • Connectors for LEDs – WAGO tool-less lever nuts
  • 1 year Limited Warranty

Attention:

Customer must have 3/4″ wrench to assemble kit, and provide electricity with GFCI, uninterruptible power supply for the controller or manually turn on the controller upon power failure, hardware to mount rack to wall or other suitable structure, HVAC to control ambient temperature and humidity, mobile device with Jinvoo app, free Jinvoo account for Smart Power Strip, internet service with WiFi 2.4 GHz, water, seeds, media, filter for water,pH kit, electrical conductivity meter to measure nutrients, salts, and impurities, temperature sensor, humidity sensor, and method using 10″x20″ plastic trays, 15″x30″ floating trays, ceramic pebbles with rockwool plugs, coco mat, soil in fabric pots, or other media. The minimum depth for the hydroponic solution is 0.5″ across the entire grow pan for proper heat transfer from the LEDs if using ebb/flow method with pump cycling on and off according to your settings on the timer in the controller unless hydroponic solution is continuously flowing with the thin film nutrient method. Warning – the temperature at the LED surface is extremely hot. Do not touch the LED when it is on, or let anything touch it. Keep the LED out of the reach of children. Although the LEDs should last 10 years, the LEDs will burn out if the hydroponic solution that also serves as the coolant completely evaporates from the grow pans with LEDs. The customer is responsible for all LED replacements.

Scale:

The lining up of our systems, placement of systems into cargo containers, and ability to create horizontal and vertical arrays of systems accessible to farmers without using a lift is non-trivial, and a key component of the design to have the highest yield in the smallest area. The design comes from the IT industry where multiple servers fit into a rack, and multiple racks fit into a data center. Multiple controlled environment agriculture systems fit into a cargo container, and multiple cargo containers fit onto a farm. Security from the steel cargo containers protects the crop from the environment and from theft. For the Microgreens Maker spaced every 32”to fit 14 systems along each wall of a cargo container, the farmer’s projected yield of 24 pounds of microgreens per system multiplied by the 28 systems for a total of 672 pounds per week. At $80 per pound for cilantro microgreens, the potential revenue is $54k per week from a gross area of 8’x40’ (320 square feet). With 52 crops per year, the farmer produces 35,000 pounds per year of microgreens with annual gross revenue of $2.8M from an area of 320 square feet with a 200A 240VAC electrical service.

I am personally interested in meeting like-minded individuals that want to promote controlled environment agriculture, and to disrupt the market with decentralized agriculture.

Who’s in?

Best regards,

Farmer Jim

Keywords:

tomatoes, hemp, strawberries, microgreens, clones, production, food production, education, research, medical, digital agriculture, urban agriculture, net zero energy, off grid, controlled environment agriculture, CEA, controlled environments, sustainability, LED, LED lighting systems, photovoltaics, geothermal, earth ship, solar energy, closed loop, closed-loop, clean rooms, semiconductors, hydroponics, cultivation, thermodynamics, modular, scalable, nutraceuticals, horticulture, scale, container, cargo, cargo container

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Sole Source

Justification for Sole Source Procurement of MM432 Microgreens Maker kit for Controlled EnvironmentAgriculture (CEA)

Our MM432 Microgreens Maker is only available from a sole source. Arent Fox in San Francisco, CA filed our provisional patent on November 10, 2017, and our non-provisional patent on November 9, 2018: U.S. Patent Application No.:16/186,447 APPARATUS AND METHODS FOR A HYDROPONICS SYSTEM WITH ENHANCED HEAT TRANSFER.

MM432 Microgreens Maker combines systems for water cooling of the LEDs and for hydroponics into a single modular and scalable system with a more efficient design for heat transfer. We reduced lighting costs by replacing a 100W LED system that cost $200 with a $27 LED array that is a monolithic semiconductor the size of a large coin, and eliminated the competitor’s extruded aluminum heat sink, fan, power supply, and large steel chassis.

That enhanced heat transfer further reduces lighting costs by keeping the case temperature below the manufacturer’s specification for safely operating the LED array at a higher current. Our LED array operates at 50V with 2.1A for 105W from a single chip. The 100W LED system we replaced operates at 36V with 1.4A for 50W from a single chip, and requires twice as many chips for the same amount of power delivered from the LED.

Given that a farmer is able to grow microgreens in a 1020 tray, and get a couple of pounds yield from each tray every week, the farmer may pack 3 of those trays into one layer, stack 4 layers in one rack, and yield 24 pounds per system per week of cilantro microgreens that currently sell for $80 per pound. That’s $2,000 per week revenue from a $4,000 system that draws less than 500W, and that fits into a 32” space.

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Customer Discovery Market Research

Any friends, family, and fools are invited to help me with I-corp customer discovery market research on microgreens and clones.

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Microgreens Maker

Microgreens Maker is coming out soon, and here is a sneak preview. Given that a farmer is able to grow microgreens in a 1020 tray and get a couple of pounds yield every week, we may pack 3 of those trays into one layer, stack 4 layers in one rack, and yield 24 pounds per system per week of cilantro microgreens that currently sell for $80 per pound. That’s $2,000 per week revenue from a $4,000 system that draws less than 500W.

We are in the process of finalizing our patent, and plan to have product available for sale in the near future.

The following drawing shows more details on the modular and scalable system along with call outs.

MM436 with Call Outs

Wayne Community College

Wayne Community College is getting 5 of our systems, and placing them in a cargo container. Although we could easily pack 10 systems in one cargo container, they are allowing room for a preparation table by each system. 
With 5 systems, that’s $10k per week market potential with 52 crops per year for an annual gross income of $500k+

Their plans revolve around applied technology as opposed to commercial potential, and will give their crops to the community while providing an opportunity to educate students in urban agriculture.

Here’s a picture of the cargo containers that will go on their campus:

Cargo Containers

We’ll add our system to our shopping cart, and open our doors for business in the very near future.

Here’s a 3D CAD drawing of our 5 systems inside a cargo container:

MM436 in container
Multiple Systems

Best regards,

Farmer Jim

Jim Ray, President/CTO & Founder

NetZero // Urban Agriculture – Grow Love. Feed. Every. Body.

office: 855-636-9114 cell: 984-459-0458 email: jim@hq.net0ag.com

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Jinvoo and Home Smart Wifi Power Strip

The first time I used Jinvoo, it took me a minute to figure it out (well, hours, actually), and I compiled some resources that may help you.

Enjoy!

Regards,

Farmer Jim

Jim Ray, President/CTO & Founder
NetZero // Urban Agriculture – Grow Love. Feed. Every. Body.
office: 855-636-9114 cell: 984-459-0458 email: jim@hq.net0ag.com

Source

Here’s where I bought my device that uses Jinvoo:

Review

Top customer reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars

October 2, 2017 Verified Purchase This WiFi Smart Power Strip is very well designed. The options include using, or, turning on,any or all of the plug outlets all from the downloadable smartphone app (Jinvoo Smart). For example, if I have a device using outlet 1, and I want outlet 2 turned on for the ability to plug in another device, I can have just outlets 1 and 2 switched to on. Since I currently have a lamp with a simple step switch plugged into the WiFi Smart Power Strip, the lamp has to be in the “on” position 100% of the time, while I control the actual light on and off from my phone by turning the outlet on and off. Outlet 2 is independent and it can be open and available for a device to be plugged into it. The USB ports are a whole unit- “All-On”, or, “All-Off”.

After you plug the power strip into a wall outlet, scan the QR code and it brings you to the app that this Smart Wifi Power Strip uses. You do not need to have Alexa to use it. (Alexa works with Echo Dot.) Click down the power button and the app allows you to quickly add the power strip and it is as easy as that. At your fingertips, and from anywhere in the world, set your devices to turn on and/or off.

Once initial setup is created (YOU MUST HAVE THE POWER STRIP AND PHONE IN SAME WIFI ENVIRONMENT), you can use your phone from anywhere in the world to access your WiFi Smart Power Strip. Cellular networks (2G, 3G, and 4G) will allow access in to your WiFi Smart Power Strip. This would allow you to be able to turn on lamps and radios in your home to have people think you are in town. There are probably a lot of different devices you can have set up on this. You can even place a timer outlet switch into this unit, set it to “on” on the app, and have whatever you want be on a self timer (if you don’t want to control it yourself) and have other items self-controlled by you. This is a very powerful tool!This WiFi Smart Power Strip is great!

Pros:
+Built-in Wifi capability+Access from a phone app (anywhere in the world)+Ability to enable whichever outlets are needed+4 USB ports+ Price
Cons:
-Surge Protection-UL Listing (safety certification)

*Keep this power strip away from any possible water source as there is no surge protection. UL listing is an official safety certification, and it signifies that it has passed all electrical safety tests. (Just some info for you)

Photos

Jinvoo Smart on the App Store

Google Home

Google Home

Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo

Video

Video on Setting Up Jinvoo and Home Automation

Manual

The manual  is so small that you need a magnifying glass to see it. Here are some photos of the essential information for you.

WiFi Smart Devices - User Manual
Setting Up Jinvoo Smart App
Adding a New Device in Quick Connection
Adding a New Device in AP mode
FAQ
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ResearchGate and Technical Information

For those interested in the research and technical details, I opened up an account with ResearchGate, posted my profile, and started a project.

Here’s the goal for the project:

A system for controlled environment agriculture combines elements of mechanical and electrical design resulting in scalability and sustainability for agricultural production off the grid in a closed loop with network addressable components. The mechanical design includes a system of racks and stacked pans that increase the grow area without increasing the footprint, circulates the hydroponic solution that provides nutrients to the plants, maintains thermodynamic equilibrium of the water at the plant roots, transfers heat away from the light sources including Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), and oxygenates the water.

Enjoy!

Regards,

Farmer Jim

Jim Ray, President/CTO & Founder
NetZero // Urban Agriculture – Grow Love. Feed. Every. Body.
office: 855-636-9114 cell: 984-459-0458
email: jim@hq.net0ag.com web: www.net0ag.com

 
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Microgreens Instructions

 

Link to Johnny’s Seeds to Buy Microgreens Seeds, and Instructions on How to Grow Them

Please visit the following link to Johnny’s Seeds to order seeds to grow microgreens.

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/vegetables/microgreens/microgreen-mixes/

They have extensive information on seed varieties as well as instructions on how to grow microgreens. The following information from their web site may help you grow your microgreens.

Microgreens Instructions from Johnny’s Seeds

CULTURE:

Grow in a greenhouse or protected area. Follow the germination guidelines for the specific variety being grown. However, you can generally be successful by following the guidelines for Brassica family members: grow on potting mix or soilless medium of your choice in shallow trays or 20-row flats. Broadcast seed thickly on the media surface with seeds 1/8- 1/4″ apart, press seeds firmly into media for maximum soil contact, and cover lightly with sowing mix, vermiculite, or humidity dome. Micro greens can be germinated on heat mats, in germination chambers, or on greenhouse benches or floors.

WATERING:

Bottom water or mist to prevent sowing mix from splashing on the seedlings. Maintain even moisture and do not allow sowing medium to dry out.

TEMPERATURE:

Ideal soil temperature is 75°F (24°C) until germination, then reduced to 60°F (16°C). Optimal ambient temperatures are variety-specific, but 65–75°F/18–24C° is generally a favorable range. Temperatures above 75° can increase disease pressure and inhibit germination.

LIGHTING:

Consider supplemental lighting in any environment where natural light is insufficient, such as in a greenhouse during the short days of winter.

FERTILIZER:

For media that hold some fertility, such as potting mix, plain water is usually best. Watering with a dilute fertilizer solution is appropriate for media with no inherent nutrient value, or for slow-growing species that might exhaust fertility before reaching harvest stage. If fertilizing, incorporate fertilizer into the sowing mix before sowing, or use a bottom watering system for liquid applications to avoid residue on the leaves.

DAYS TO MATURITY:

Varies depending on the variety, growing conditions, and desired size at harvest. Fast-growing varieties are typically ready for harvest in 10-15 days while slow-growing varieties are ready in 16-25 days.

DISEASES:

Because they are planted so densely, micro greens can be prone to disorders, such as damping off, associated with poor air circulation and saturated media. Ensure air movement with horizontal airflow fans, use clean media and water sources, and use appropriate seeding density.

HARVEST:

Once cotyledons have fully developed, or once the first true leaves begin to emerge, depending upon your market. Typically, micro greens are harvested at 1/2-2″ in height. Cut with scissors or a sharp knife and minimize handling to reduce damage.

STORAGE:
Shelf life ranges from 5-10 days under proper storage conditions. Micro greens must be washed before serving.

Let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Regards,

Farmer Jim

Jim Ray, President/CTO & Founder
NetZero // Urban Agriculture – Grow Love. Feed. Every. Body.
office: 855-636-9114 cell: 984-459-0458
email: jim@hq.net0ag.com web: www.net0ag.com

 
Jim Ray
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Growing Microgreens

I buy my seeds for microgreens from Johnny’s Selected Seeds, and they have a great article on their web site called the “Guide to Year-Round Microgreens Production” that I wanted to share:
 

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/growers-library/vegetables/year-round-micro-greens-production.html

The article includes planning, sowing, growing, harvesting, and marketing. The method they use may be different from the method I use; however, many of the steps are the same. Here are some tips in their article that may help others have the most success with microgreens.

Seed Density and Germination

For the floating tray technology I use to grow microgreens with the Speedling tray, I recommend that you follow the rule of thumb for seeds from the place where I buy my seeds:

“As a rule of thumb, sow small seeds at a density of approximately 10–12 seeds per square inch of tray surface, and larger or medium-sized seeds at a density of 6–8 seeds per square inch.”

I use the Speedling soil-less media, cover the seeds with a light layer, and then water gently. It is necessary to cover the trays to keep the media from drying out for 2-3 days while the seeds germinate. Those trays that sit in our pans may be covered with a sheet of plastic across the top of the pan. Keep the lights off during germination.

Growing

Our system requires that the building heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system regulate the temperature, air flow, and humidity. Our system may be installed inside a grow tent or clean room with a separate HVAC system. Here is the recommendation regarding temperature for both germination and for growth:

“Optimal ambient temperatures are also variety-specific, but 65–75°F/18–24C° is generally a favorable range. Temperatures above 75° can increase disease pressure and inhibit germination in some varieties.”

Harvesting

Since microgreens lose much of their taste and nutritional value in 1 or 2 days after harvesting, I recommend that you do not harvest what you do not eat that day. You can cut with scissors what you want to eat whenever you want to eat, and keep the remainder growing for the next meal. As for when the microgreens are ready to harvest, here is a tip from the article:

“Microgreens are typically harvested at the first-true-leaf stage of growth, with the cotyledons still attached, or at the seed-leaf stage, at heights varying between 1–2 inches.”

That’s all for now. Happy urban agriculture!!!

Regards,

Farmer Jim

Jim Ray, President/CTO & Founder
NetZero // Urban Agriculture – Grow Love. Feed. Every. Body.
office: 855-636-9114 cell: 984-459-0458
email: jim@hq.net0ag.com web: www.net0ag.com

microgreens