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grow-light lantern mantles

Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
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How good are lantern mantles as grow lights?

I'm asking because I've heard from several sources in the northern lattitudes who want biofuel heat and electric light in their greenhouses.

The familiar cerium/thorium lantern mantles are fairly efficient at turning biogas into light, and any waste heat they give off before dawn would not be wasted in a greenhouse. The CO[sub]2[/sub] would also be appreicated. But that efficiency is in terms of producing a spectrum that looks balanced to the human eye. Presumably plants don't need so much green light. Do you think that would be worth exploring different sorts of mantle?

Also, it would be nice to do without the thorium. A broken mantle shouldn't be a big deal, but if it's made of a radionuclide, I'd want to be careful.

I ask partly because I'll have my degree fairly soon, and while I don't know much about candoluminescence (the phenomenon that makes lantern mantles work), I have a fair amount of experience in several relevant fields.
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