If, like me, you have a back garden covered in grass, the last gadget you’d want to buy is one that makes it grow 6x faster. But that’s a gadget Sony has gone ahead and made, and there is a legitimate reason for it not only existing but being an extremely popular purchase.
Sony’s LED light system for growing grass really quickly is called Brighturf . It’s aimed squarely at the business side of grass growing, which covers most grass-based sports e.g. golf, soccer, baseball, cricket, rugby, athletics, horse racing, etc. Typically this grass needs to be as perfect as can be before a game starts, but by the end has been torn up and looks a little worse for wear. It then needs to be made perfect again in time for the next sporting event.
Brighturf works by mounting LED-based lights on a frame 1.5 meters above the grass that needs to be grown and can be setup to cover an area measuring 90 square meters. The LED lights used are red and blue, using 660m and 450m wavelengths respectively. This combination is optimal for photosynthesis and removes the reliance on the sun doing its job during the day. Brightturf allows uninterrupted photosynthesis for as long as desired.
This isn’t the first lighting system developed to help grow grass, but it is the first to use LED lighting. Older systems relied on halogen, which ran hot and could make the newly grown grass wither.
As well as finding a market at professional sports fields, I can see turf growers showing an interest in Brighturf. If they can grow grass faster, they can sell more grass, potentially making an investment in the LED kit worth it for the extra sales and profit made possible.
Sony demonstrated Brighturf at the Stadia & Arena Asia Pacific 2016 convention held last week in Japan. It has also been working with the Kashima Antlers football club, Shinshu University, and chemicals company Showa Denko KK.