Valoya, Microsoft collaborate on plant-friendly lighting system

Advanced plant lighting systems company Valoya and Microsoft Corp. worked together to create a new lighting system using Valoya’s advanced LED lights, Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Azure Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology.

Valoya LightDNA Dynamic Light simulates natural outdoor lighting. The lighting system is important in finding a solution to the global hunger problem through accelerating the selection and breeding of new, productive, light stress-resistant plant varieties.

“The system by Valoya now enables us to do testing on plants and algae, which has been impossible before," Professor Alexander Ruban of Queen Mary University of London’s School of Biological and Chemical Sciences, said. "Not only will we reach very high light intensities, but we can also match the spectral conditions of different locations in the world. The flexibility of the system also allows us to do simulations on sunflecks in shade situations, all downstairs in our lab and anytime of the year. This will massively speed up our research and opens up completely new avenues for the future."
The Valoya LightDNA Dynamic Light system can match the light for any location or time in the world through advanced optimization algorithms and the Microsoft Azure cloud-computing platform given to Queen Mary University of London’s research lab.

“The solution opens up completely new opportunities, not only in plant research, but in any testing or other application where solar or outdoor light conditions are critical or of high value," Valoya CEO Lars Aikala said. "We are very grateful for Microsoft’s contribution and the way they smoothly enabled linking our LED lights with the easy to use, easy to access user interface and all the software in between. We are also thankful to our first customer of the system, Queen Mary University of London, who gave us great input from the end user perspective.”

The collaboration helps Microsoft evolve in technology, Petro Soininen, Principal Software Development Engineer with Microsoft said.

“Our collaboration with Valoya and Queen Mary University of London brings together IoT, big data and cloud technologies in way that is both advanced and relevant for agricultural researchers and businesses," he said. "Through this novel project, we have been able to validate and evolve some of our latest technology and architecture, combining the power and flexibility of Azure with select open source components.”

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