New high-tech greenhouse opened at HAS University of Applied Sciences

News 22 September 2015
Opening hightech kas

“Our work in the greenhouse includes research into cultivating crops efficiently and sustainably.”

HAS University of Applied Sciences in Den Bosch has a new high-tech greenhouse. It is an innovative practical learning environment with the newest cultivation techniques, which can be used for both educational and research projects. The institution had already had a greenhouse for many years, but it had become outdated. The new greenhouse officially opened today. Prior to the opening senior lecturers Herman Peppelenbos (Green Health Expertise & Research Centre) and Jasper den Besten (New Cultivation Systems Expertise & Research Centre) gave their inaugural addresses to almost 200 guests.

Cultivation and plant physiology research

“The new 1500 square metre greenhouse is divided into 4 cultivation sections and 3 research sections”, explains manager Martijn Bekkers. “In these sections, based on projects, modern greenhouse cultivation schemes are set up for greenhouse vegetables and cut flowers, with all kinds of cultivation and plant physiology research being carried out at the same time. These projects come from the curriculum for study programmes such as Horticulture & Arable Farming and Applied Biology and from research programmes we have started with regional businesses.” The greenhouse is not intended only for HAS students. It is a practical facility where students from other institutions are also welcome and to which businesses can bring their research queries.

Next Generation Cultivation

All the latest techniques are applied. “For example, the greenhouse has a hypermodern irrigation system and a total climate control system, a section with diffuse glass and an air treatment system, various root cooling systems and all sections have a high-pressure misting system.” An important development in the cultivation sector is Next Generation Cultivation. This involves the most energy efficient cultivation possible. “In the greenhouse we carry out research into the best method for saving as much energy as possible during cultivation.” In the research sections, studies can be carried out into different crops, allowing researchers to ‘play’ with varying conditions such as different lighting, fertilisation, irrigation, darkness and humidity.

Partners

Research currently being carried out by HAS includes specific cultivation research with The Greenery. It is also working together with Philips on the development of LED use in cultivation and with Priva on the use of new climate control software. Philips and Priva also made financial contributions to the construction of the greenhouse. Technokas, Stolze and Peter Dekker Installaties were involved in its construction.

About the Expertise & Research Centres

The Green Health Expertise & Research Centre develops and disseminates expertise on nutritional value and the consumption of fruit and vegetables. Its objective is to contribute to healthier eating patterns and a reduction in healthcare costs. The New Cultivation Systems Expertise & Research Centre develops and disseminates expertise on cultivation without daylight, contributing to the development of this new form of horticulture.