LED lamp for seedlings do-it-yourself: features, device and circuit
At the end of winter, summer residents begin to prepare for the start of the new season. And this process begins with the planting of seedlings. To get healthy and strong plants, you need to provide them with enough light. And this is a problem for many. Not everyone can boast a large window on the south side of the house. Lamps for seedlings come to the rescue. How to choose a suitable option, not everyone knows. Currently there are a wide variety of models. They are represented by different manufacturers, work from different lamps, have different designs. Lamps for seedlings in "Leroy Merlin", for example, their diversity will make confused even experienced gardeners. But buying in the store is not the only way out. Such a device can be made independently.To do this, you will need to purchase only some details.
Why highlight seedlings?
Before proceeding to the choice, it is necessary to understand what the lamp for seedlings is for. Many believe that seedlings will grow without illumination. Yes this is true. But it will be weak, thin, elongated. And it stretches to the light, which is not enough.
Plants derive energy from photosynthesis from sunlight. Due to the absorption of sunlight in the leaves photochemical reactions occur. The results of this process is the conversion of mineral substances into organic. Thanks to this, the seedlings begin to grow stronger, its color becomes more saturated, new leaves appear.
What kind of light do plants need?
Solar energy is a stream of electromagnetic waves having different lengths. Depending on the wavelength, it is common to divide all light energy into spectra. The longest wavelength is characteristic of the red spectrum. And the shortest - for blue and purple. The development of the plant is most affected by the waves of these two colors. They only affect them in different ways.
Rays with a wavelength of 400-500 nm belong to the blue color spectrum. They are responsible for the growth of the plant, making the stalks thick and strong. For the growth of leaves is responsible for the red spectrum (with a wavelength of 600-700 nm). It is responsible for seed germination, seedling development, stimulates flowering. The light of the yellow and green spectra is reflected from the plants, thereby stimulating the development of the leaf plate.
Given all the above, we can conclude that at each stage of plant growth a seedling lamp should send rays of different spectra:
- Before the picks alternate red and blue light. After a two-day red light, the day light is followed by a blue light. Red spectrum will improve the growth and development of seedlings. Due to the presence of blue light, roots will develop better. At the same time, the stems will slow down their growth, which will allow the plant to grow in breadth, and not in height. This will lead to the fact that the stem will be thick, and the leaves will be at a great distance from each other.
- After picking, the lighting must be turned off for several days. This will allow the plants to relax and get out of stress. After 2-3 days during the month, it is necessary to alternately turn on the red and blue color (one day each).
Conventional incandescent bulbs give a red-yellow light.Therefore, they are not suitable for this purpose.
What lamps for seedlings exist?
Currently, there are several options for lamps for lighting seedlings:
- Mercury lamps that give white, close to sunlight. For plants, this is not the best option.
- Fluorescent seedlings provide only blue light. They lack the waves of the red spectrum.
- Sodium lamps, on the contrary, are characterized by a red spectrum. But they lack blue. This type of lighting is effective for adult plants.
- Phytolamps have a violet-pink spectrum. This is a good option for seedlings. But such a light is harmful to humans. It is necessary to equip the lamp with a special reflector.
- LED lamps for seedlings - the best option. It allows you to adjust the range of lighting, choosing the most suitable option.
The latter lighting option is easy to install. In addition, it has an affordable price.
Advantages of LED lighting
The backlighting of seedlings with LED lamps has several advantages:
- Efficiency. One diode consumes only 1 watt per hour.
- High efficiency.Radiation suitable for photosynthesis is consumed at 99%.
- High light return (per hour this value is about 100 lm).
- Long service life (up to 100 thousand hours).
- Ability to select the desired spectrum.
- The ability to adjust the power of lighting.
- A small degree of heating, thereby eliminating the risk of burns plants.
- Does not have a harmful effect on others.
- Resistance to changes in temperature, humidity.
You can reduce the cost of purchasing LED lighting. One of the best options - a lamp for seedlings with their own hands.
The calculation of the required number of LEDs
The lamp for seedlings working on LEDs has a specific area of highlighting. Therefore, it is necessary to correctly determine the number of tapes and their location.
First you need to determine the place of installation of the lamps. They are indicated in the diagram. Moreover, you must specify which lamps (depending on color) will be located in a particular place. Usually use LEDs in white, red and blue. They are connected in such a way that they can be included separately.
To determine the required number of tapes, you should double the number of lamp installation sites. This is done with the intention that the lamps are arranged in 2 rows.
The easiest way to make a seedling lamp with your own hands, involves the use of LED strip. In addition to it, other materials will also be required:
- Thermal grease (can be replaced with hot melt glue, but it costs more).
- Material for the base (it can be a metal corner, a furniture profile, a wooden bar, and so on).
- Power supply (you can replace the driver).
- Cable with plug.
In addition, you may need tape, bolts with nuts and some other little things that are in every home.
The basis for mounting the diodes should be the same area with the ground on which the seedlings are standing. It is convenient to take an old fluorescent lamp for its basis.
The power supply will help to get the voltage of the desired value. It transforms 220 volts into 12 or 24 volts required for a lamp. In addition, it stabilizes the voltage. The driver is different in that it is suitable only for LEDs with a certain voltage.
Preparation for work
Before you start assembling the lighting device, it is necessary to carry out preparatory activities. These include the following actions:
- Prepare a place where plants and a seedling lamp will be placed.
- Make fasteners that will hold the design of the lamp.
- Connect the electric cable to which the lamp will be connected in the future.
Only having executed preparatory actions, it is possible to start assembly of a design.
Lamps for home seedlings are made in the following sequence:
- The panel is cleaned and degreased.
- An aluminum profile is attached to the panel (it removes heat, thereby making the useful life longer).
- The LED strip is cut into individual pieces, the length of which corresponds to the length of the panel. And to cut the tape is necessary only in those places where there is a soldering.
- Separate panels are connected using a soldering iron.
- The next step is to attach the tape to the base. To do this, on the back of the tape, you must remove the protective film. Glue the tape with a slight touch. If this does not happen, you can use glue.
- The legs are fastened, due to which the lamp will stand over the seedlings.
- We connect the power supply, while respecting the polarity.
This completes the build process. Lamp for highlighting seedlings ready.
Second method: preparation of materials
LED lamps for seedlings can be made in one more way. To implement it, you must have the following materials:
- Waste fluorescent light bulb.
- Glass fiber (or foil).
- LEDs in three colors (blue, red, white).
- A set of radio components.
- Capacitor resistance.
When all the parts are assembled, you can get to work.
The first step is to prepare a scheme. A circle with a diameter of 2 cm is cut out of glass fiber cloth. Then draw tracks on it. For this you can use nail polish.
In a container with a solvent for copper, the board is lowered. This will clear it from the tracks. After that, holes are prepared in the board to which other parts are attached. The connection diagram of parts and LEDs is shown in the figure below.
The old lamp will serve as the base. To do this, it must be cleared of the contents. Internal parts get completely.All that remains is a wire from the current source (base).
Further, the circuit is soldered to the wires remaining in the lamp. Thus the lamp for seedlings is connected to the source of electricity.
The lamp to illuminate the seedlings should be located as close as possible to the soil, until the plants have grown. After germination, the lamp rises to a height of approximately 40-60 cm. It is possible to determine the desired height in a simple way. The hand must be brought to the lamp. If the hand is comfortable, then the seedlings will feel great. If the hand is slightly burned by the heat generated by the lamp, then the entire structure must be raised higher. Otherwise, the plants may die.
In the event that plants are in the living room, the lamp must be equipped with a reflector. Due to this, the light will be reflected, falling on the plants from the other side. In addition, additional lighting will not interfere when in the room.
After reading the above information, it becomes clear how to make lamps for seedlings on your own, how to choose the right number of diodes and how high they should be.In a hand-made device, it is recommended to alternate red and blue diodes in a 2: 1 ratio, respectively (that is, 2 lines of red diodes, 1 - blue). Lamps purchased in the store for seedlings (in Leroy Merlin, for example) are no better than those that are made independently. And they will cost more. Therefore, it makes sense to do a little bit and do it yourself.