SunLab

Artificial solar ripening 

SunLab is a device that artificially ripens fruits and vegetables through the use of differentiated continuous solar light treatment. This will revolutionise the way artificial ripening is done leaving fruit and vegetables sweet and nutritious just as they would have been if they had been ripened by the sun on their bush or tree. This will allow farmers to continue intensive farming while giving consumers high-quality fruit and vegetables with greater nutritional value and natural sugar content. 

We see this device being part of a larger direct to the consumer supply chain.

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June 2020

X- Y (ScienceDesign Visioning)

Future Studies

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The farmer picks fruits in the pre ripened phase, allowing more fruit to be grown increasing farmers yields 

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The fruit is then taken to a centralised depot.

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Once the order has been made online by consumers, the fruits are then sourced from the depot. 

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The fruits are distributed into different modules inside of the solar ripening machine based on their different ripening properties.

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The modules use continuous solar light to speed up the ripening process in a natural way.

Once the customer’s fruit is ripened, it will be put into the locker.

The customer then receives a phone notification telling them that their order is ready for collection.

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UV lamp used in low light conditions

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Sunlight help ripening
Continuous light treated (24 μmol m−2 s−1) postharvest handling bananas reached a respiratory climacteric peak 8 days earlier than bananas stored in the dark. Also, significantly higher amounts of soluble sugars were accumulated in light-treated bananas than in bananas stored in the dark. 

Sunlight help increase nutrients
It has been reported that light exposure could beneficially affect the nutritional quality of fresh produce such as spinach, fresh-cut romaine lettuce, tomato, broccoli florets, fresh-cut celery and cauliflower. 
Example: Post harvest tomatoes are treated daily with short bursts of UV-C, red light. Control untreated tomatoes were kept in the dark for the same period. Results indicated that the concentration of lycopene in tomato exocarp was significantly increased after 4 days and dramatically enhanced by UV-C or red light treatments.

Sunlight help increase  flavour

A new University of Florida study underlines how specific light wavelengths can manipulate volatile compounds that control aroma and taste in several high-value crops, including petunia, tomato, strawberry and blueberry. And their findings open the door to more studies into ways light may someday be used to improve the flavour and nutritional content of fruits, vegetables and herbs.

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Optical light filter  

device that selectively transmits light of different wavelengths, usually implemented as a glass plane or plastic device in the optical path.

Solar window panel 

solar windows use quantum dots (nanotechnology) to absorb non-visible sunlight (like ultraviolet rays) and then shoot them back out at solar cells on the sides of the window pane. The solar cells absorb this light and turn it into electricity.

Continuous light treatment in conditions of light deficiency

variable wavelength light source system can provide a beam of light in a specific wavelength range, and can be quickly switched to the selected wavelength band and FWHM by computer program control.

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