The profitability of vegetable produce is going down, and the yields of bell peppers and tomatoes, the major crops grown in greenhouses in the Arava, cannot keep up with growing costs of cultivation. As a result of Israel’s difficult water situation the amount of water allotted to each farmer is becoming constantly smaller. In order to preserve the profitability of this type of farming it will be necessary to implement radical changes by providing conditions that will allow crops to be cultivated during most of the year, thus providing higher crop yields per farming plot. Lengthening the growing season in the Arava requires cooling in the warm months and heating in the winter, which would ensure a regular supply of high-quality agricultural produce and allow the Arava farmers to compete successfully in global markets. The system proposed for implementation in this study uses adiabatic cooling to achieve more effective and uniform cooling of greenhouses. Existing methods are problematic because they create a temperature and humidity gradient in the greenhouse and variable conditions in different sections of the structure. The new system can reduce greenhouse relative humidity at night to 70-80% compared to 90% with conventional heating systems. This prevents water condensing on leaves and reduces the risk of leaf disease. The use of thermal screens for heating reduces energy requirements by 80%, making this system extremely energy-efficient.

#JNFIsThere to ensure the success of the research & development of energy-wise farming at the Yair Experimental Station, located in the central Arava.

By supporting this state-of-the-art research project you will be contributing to the success of farming in the Arava and boosting the economy of the region. Your donation will allow the Arava farmers to continue competing successfully in the global produce market as well as encouraging the use of energy-effective greenhouse systems.

SIGNS'14-4-NATIONAL7