HARTSVILLE – The South Carolina Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics held a groundbreaking ceremony on May 31 on the front lawn of the school’s campus for its new Hydroponic Research Lab.
The Hydroponic Research Lab will be an upcycled shipping container made into a lab that is a highly configurable and automatic space that gives the opportunity to grow leafy greens, herbs and vegetables in a stream of nutrient-rich water year-round, stated a GSSM release.
The lab will be used by Residential, STEM Foundations, Accelerate and Outreach programs.
The enclosed growing environment, controlled by computerized systems, will allow students to experiment with all aspects of the growing process: nutrients, water pH, fans, lights, humidity, and watering schedules.
The project was proposed by four members of the faculty and staff, President Danny Dorsel said. He said it is a partnership between the school and several generous investors—Charles W. and Elizabeth H. Coker Foundation, Byerly Foundation Integrated Systems Inc., nephron, pharmaceuticals corporation, HDR and Brighton-Best International.
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Jennifer Brown, PhD, chair of the biology department, said the idea started out as a seed planted by four at GSSM and is now becoming a reality. She said it is in the sapling stage and ready to grow.
Members of the staff and faculty, sponsors and guests were present for the groundbreaking.