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UK: New control system and upgraded ventilation motors at University of Reading

Tomtech recently installed a new control system and upgraded existing ventilation motors at the University of Reading.

The School of Biological Sciences at the University of Reading has three teaching and research greenhouses, each with its own unique purpose.

Researchers at the University of Reading are using the plants for science and conservation while students are using the glasshouses to carry out research as part of their course work.

Due to the diverse horticultural requirements of the greenhouses, the university needed a control system and equipment that could better monitor precise factors, such as lighting, humidity and temperature.

“We’re always excited to work with universities – helping both researchers and students develop their understanding. The new control system will automatically optimise and maintain the perfect growing conditions within the greenhouse, improving plant quality” says Krzysztof Hernik, Managing Director at Tomtech.

Prior to Tomtech’s installation, the university’s control and ventilation system – which monitored and controlled the conditions within the greenhouse, including the vents, screens and other glasshouse infrastructure – were becoming unreliable.

This was having an adverse effect on the plants’ growth due to their specific environmental requirements.

Tomtech was approached by the University of Reading to carry out repairs and replace 10 vent motors, fitting new motor interfaces, and in one greenhouse, installing their T100 control system.

The new Huima gear motors are specifically designed for use in glasshouses to improve the efficiency of ventilation and air quality.

They are more reliable than the old motors and contain double limit switches to prevent overrunning. This, in combination with their T100 control system, will ensure that the environment within the greenhouse is optimised for plant growth.

“We’re very excited about the new control system and ventilation upgrades. They will allow us to better control key growing conditions within the greenhouses - helping us continue to provide unrivalled research capabilities for our researchers and students” adds the University of Reading.

For over 35 years, Tomtech have been one of the UK’s leading providers of commercial greenhouse monitoring and control systems. Their systems are used to optimise and regulate environmental conditions, such as light, heat, ventilation, fertigation and nutrient dosing.

Their adaptive systems have been used on projects throughout the UK, Europe and further afield to help grow bigger, better and faster crops.

“We’re thrilled that our complete control systems are being used in an environment which will support students’ horticultural education. Being able to grow a vast range of species which aren’t native to the UK is a fantastic use for greenhouses – and gives students and researchers a broader variety of plants to work with” concludes Krzysztof Hernik.

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