About us

We are a St. Louis based grow lights company.

Engine 2 Photonics empowers individuals and local indoor farmers to sustainably grow fresh produce to improve the health of the urban supply. We provide LED horticultural lighting solutions for a variety of indoor growing environments, including in the home, vertical farming applications, and even in restaurants.

Our Team


Rafael Saer

Rafael got his PhD at the University of British Columbia in 2014 and now researches photosynthesis at Washington University in St. Louis. He is also a consultant and project manager specializing in biomedical technology assessment and transfer at the BALSA Group. Rafael handles software development at Engine 2 Photonics.

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Benjamin Wolf

Ben got his PhD in plant science at Washington University in St. Louis. His thesis focused on how plants and algae can use far-red light for photosynthesis. He has been building LED plant lighting systems throughout high school, college, and graduate school. At Engine 2 Photonics, Ben is in charge of hardware prototyping and operations.


Zuzana Kocsisova

Zuzana got her PhD in molecular genetics at Washington University in St. Louis. Her thesis was on nematode reproduction and used CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing to engineer epitope tags into germline genes. She also works with science outreach organizations, designs graphics and writes freelance. She is in charge of product testing and marketing at Engine 2 Photonics.

Why Engine 2 Photonics?

Great question! You see, when we started our company, we thought "we're innovators in St. Louis, solving technical problems. We want a name that reflects that." Well, if you look in the history books, you'll see another innovative St. Louis company: McDonnell-Douglas, now Boeing. In the 1970s, Douglas had a problem: 2-engine jets weren't allowed to fly over open ocean, but 4-engine planes are inefficient. So Douglas asked, "Why not 3 engines?" Well, that turns out to pose major technological challenges! But by using a tail-mounted engine, called Engine 2, they solved the problem and created the DC-10, a successful aircraft still in the sky today. We were inspired by that innovative spirit and problem-solving resolve, and picked a name that reflected that amazing design.