Below is our recent interview with Guy Elitzur, CEO of Vertical Field:
Q: What is the vision and concept of vertical field?
A: In the past, man lived harmoniously with nature. Nature provided most of humankind’s needs in order to live, exist and develop. But times have changed, and together with-it our environment. Nowadays, most of the population is concentrated in metropolitan areas. Buildings and urban facilities have a substantial impact on the health and wellbeing of people and the planet. Buildings use resources, generate waste and are costly to maintain and operate. Living building is the practice of designing, constructing and operating buildings to maximize occupant health and productivity, use fewer resources, reduce waste and negative environmental impacts, and decrease life cycle costs.
In Vertical Field we aim to lead the transformation of the urban ecosystem by integrating nature values to human life. We develops and markets propriety natural based solutions that improve environmental, human health conditions and provide vertical agriculture solutions for indoor and outdoor.
Q: What are ALW (Active Living Walls)?
A: Active Living Wall is a unique concept of combining nature basic benefits with our top-notch technology in a way it activates the values and benefits of plant homogeneously with the needs of an indoor and outdoor dynamic change. For example, we all know that in the cities, there are many skyscrapers where one can’t open a window to enjoy fresh air but must depend on mechanical air conditions systems. In such cases, our ALW system identifies the level of certain important parameters to keep high level of air quality (CO2 level, certain allergens and more) and activates the wall in a way it always keeps the right level of such parameters and thus keeps high level of air quality in indoor facilities.
Many people complains about headaches and physical and mental disturbances during working time as result of low quality of air which effect of course on their health, their cognitive performance and efficiency.
In that Example, ALW improves the air quality in a natural way and lower such adverse impact significantly, without capturing valuable indoor space.
Q: What’s the difference between the regular green walls you see in the market?
A: Regular green walls are predominantly installed for design purposes. The beauty of nature in the urban ecosystem add the style and strength to the organization and its image.
Whereas ALW not only brings the beauty of nature but also enables its activation as respond the change in the urban ecosystem. It is an active and dynamic wall that monitor the quality of parameters in indoor and outdoor using an advance technology of sensors, IoT, big data and AI to keep the best conditions for human health and environment.
Q: What your technology does?
A: Our technology helps to identify the indoor and outdoor conditions and to keep it in a range of the quality standard thus the living conditions are always kept in its highest though the real conditions are dynamic and changing.
Q: Why ALW is an important component in green building and smart city planning?
A: We believe that brining back nature into the urban ecosystem is a vital consideration in making the cities less polluted and harmful to environment and humankind. By adding an advanced technology to it, it maximizes the effectiveness of the plant. This the essence of smart future cities thus ALW must be an important component in the planning and designing of the cities of tomorrow.
Q: How ALW helps in extending the vital urban green lungs?
A: As much as we will integrate nature and plants into the city, we will all benefits from it. ALW helps in adding such plants in an intelligent way without capturing expensive floor space and literally enabling adding plants everywhere in the cities – covering walls of building, train stations, safety walls and more. We believe that green lungs should cover the entire cities and not just parks and public gardens. Maximizing the plants’ coverage in a city will help to humankind face the challenge of climate change.
Q: Why are the purposes of the research with BIU? why is it so important?
A: Prof. Itamar Lensky and BIU are a global leading factor in environment and remote sensing. Doing such comprehensive research with them will helps us to preciously understand the impact of ALW on environmental conditions. The research will aim to identify measurable parameters of such impact. We hope that positive results will trigger the implementation of ALW in a wider global coverage.
Q: What are your future plans?
A: We are planning to implement our know-how around vertical growing into agriculture. We believe that growing food inside a city will create an alternative to some of the traditional agriculture produce and will enrich the life in the city, create more jobs for local community, provide healthier and better food and lower the CO2 footprint as result of lower logistic movement.