Comparison of the Efficiency of Plastic Nets for Shading Greenhouse in Different Climates
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In order to limit the internal air temperature during summer and create optimum cultivation conditions in the greenhouses, a common solution utilized by growers is the shading against excessive solar radiation using plastic nets; this is due to their photo-selective properties. With the aim to analyse the efficacy of the shading effect of plastic nets in different climates, experimental trials have been carried out on some identical small-scale tunnels installed in two different locations, one in Mediterranean area (Acerenza—Southern Italy) and one in arid conditions (Riyadh—Saudi Arabia). These tunnels have been covered with a plastic film and shaded with a white plastic net installed either in contact or at a distance of 20 cm over the cladding film. The radiometrical characteristics of the plastic film and nets have been determined through laboratory tests, while the internal microclimatic conditions have been monitored inside these experimental tunnels in both locations. The obtained results are the base for a comparative analysis to evaluate the performance of different nets, and to explore the role of shading on the temperature reduction and quality of light in different climates.
KeywordsPolyethylene nets Crop shading Radiometric characteristics Micro-climatic effect
The Authors wish to thank the net producer SACHIM-ARRIGONI for the kind supply of the plastic nets that were tested in this experimental trial.
Many thanks to Mr. Cosimo Marano—technical staff at the SAFE School of the University of Basilicata—for his support into performing the spectro-radiometrical laboratory analysis and field tests.
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