The global cannabis industry surpassed the $20 billion revenue mark in 2020. Technological advances undoubtedly played a critical role in the industry’s growth to date and will continue to play a starring role in the success of all sectors. On the cultivation side, one company to watch is Atlanta-based Revolution Micro, a horticultural lighting manufacturer that makes the bold claim its high-performance LED fixtures can improve cannabis quality, increase yields, and lower overall production costs.
Revolution’s Avici LED lights are the company’s most durable and long-lasting horticulture LED, according to co-founder, Chief Technology Officer, and Managing Director Greg Richter. The lights are built to last, offering a lifespan three times longer than average fixtures—150,000 hours instead of the standard 55,000—and a thirty-two-year part life instead of the standard five years. Using a customizable software platform, operators can program specialized light patterns, optimizing the intensity and spectrum for every point in a plant’s life cycle.
Avici LED lights are specifically designed to adapt to any cultivation style or application and easily can be programmed to mimic light spectra for any plant, in any season, anywhere in the world. Using intuitive software controls, Avici lights can be fine-tuned to boost phytochemical development and enhance terpene and flavor profiles—the very essence of fragrant, tasty, top-shelf flower.
“Sunlight is free, but it’s not the perfect source for optimizing growth for cannabis,” Richter said. “If you take sunlight and add a little bit more blue to create big, beefy stalks, and then a little bit more red to create an ideal absorption spectrum for chlorophylls, that’s how you maximize cannabinoid and terpene production.”
With any type of electronic device, temperature kills. In lighting fixtures, not only do high temperatures degrade the performance of circuits, drivers, and other components, but they also reduce the lamp’s lifespan. Richter said Revolution devoted considerable time and effort to designing its fixtures with heavy-duty heat sinks that keep operating temperatures in check. “You can lay your face on the lamp after it’s been running for ten hours and it’s warm, but warm like a puppy, not like a cylinder head,” said Richter.
All Revolution lights are designed in-house, using NASA-grade specifications and a rigorous quality assurance process. They burn brighter and longer because they have safeguards in place that other manufacturers don’t take into account. “Our lights don’t break because we build them to run,” said Richter. “We don’t know what type of power our clients are hooked up to, but generally they are in industrial parks with ‘dirty’ power that can cause surges, flickering lights, vibrations, and other issues. We protect against those factors by designing fixtures with power conditioning and heavy-duty input filters.”
Revolution also employs open-source, upgradeable software. The TouchMi system allows growers to precisely program and monitor up to 512 lights and incorporates a built-in timer, battery backup, temperature and humidity protection, and more—all using a touchscreen controller.
For growers with specialized software requirements, Revolution publishes all the source code for its software and can assist clients in creating customized configurations. When it’s time to upgrade or customize the software, just plug a laptop into the system to download an update. Likewise, new software can be uploaded to the lights without opening the fixture.
Utilizing grow spaces efficiently is essential in cannabis cultivation, and one major advantage of LED lights is they can be stacked on shelving units to create multi-level, vertical configurations. Because Avici LED lights and fixtures are securely sealed with silicone and waterproof, they can be power-washed right alongside grow trays and shelves.
Aside from water and nutrients, the main drivers for plant growth are photon counts and wavelength. That’s where Revolution really shines. According to customers, the lights offer better performance at a lower cost than other lamps they’ve used: With a low cost per uMole, Avici lamps are 50-percent brighter than the competition at the same price point.
“After more than a year of [research and development] in running the Avici side by side against four other top-selling 1,000-watt [high-pressure sodium] lights in a controlled environment, we found the Avici’s controllability, spectrum, and output produced higher yields and a higher-quality finished product,” said Brian Hurley, a recent customer. “Avici outperformed every other light we tested.”
Revolution stands behind its performance claims, and customers can review the results of certified independent national lab-testing from organizations including the Canadian Standards Organization and the Federal Trade Commission. The complete, unedited reports are available on Revolution’s website.
All Revolution products are listed in the DesignLights Consortium Qualified Products List and qualify for rebates in states that offer such programs.
Revolution is a leader in LED horticulture lighting designs because it produces efficient, high-performance products upon which its customers rely for optimizing results. Both craft cultivators and high-volume, giga-scale producers say Revolution products provide a game-changing glow to their operations.