To secure our energy needs for the future it is essential that we consume locally generated, renewable energy. Vandebron is the first online marketplace where consumers can buy their renewable energy (wind, bio and solar) straight from the source. They offer full transparency with regard to the source of the renewable energy and insight in what the consumer is actually paying for. Most energy companies have a double business model, they earn a fixed amount per month and they have a margin on the electricity they sell. Vandebron only does the first, therefore having no interest in a higher energy consumption of their clients.
As the port of Rotterdam expands and the already massive volumes of container transportation keep on growing, the newly built container terminal Rotterdam World Gateway (RWG) on Maasvlakte II introduces a highly automated environment for handling this traffic. The terminal uses the newest technologies in automation to handle containers on location. Advanced IT systems connected to various types of cranes and other equipment guide the entire process. RWG's terminal is the most technologically advanced and the most safe and environmentally friendly terminal in the world.
The agricultural sector's many waste streams resulting from harvesting and processing crops, contain valuable chemicals. Phytonext is a novel technology that is particularly suited for selective extraction of phytochemicals from natural material, such as vegetables. Many of these phytochemicals have functional properties that can substitute synthetic chemicals currently in use. These phytochemicals can thus provide natural solutions for the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. It not only extracts selectively, it is capable of 'engineering' particles in a controlled manner. Advantages are: enhanced selectivity of the extraction, no acidification of extract, low pressure and low energy consumption.
To provide sustainable energy to countries' most rural areas, the company Alfen developed SOPRA. The Sustainable Off-grid Power Station for Rural Applications provides autonomous energy grids at locations where this was not previously feasible. The basic solution comprises a power conversion system, a battery pack and an advanced regulating system for the batteries, which is very mobile. The solution can therefore be used anywhere in the world. The system pays for itself within only a few years, as it replaces the expenditure on conventional energy sources such as oil and candles. Thanks to these savings in fuel costs, a SOPRA system is the ideal solution for even the poorest of countries.
Looking for alternatives for the global fossil fuel dependency, The Netherlands introduces an intelligent energy solution: a smart electricity network that enables residents to use their electric cars' batteries to store locally produced energy, for instance from solar panels. These public posts can charge and discharge batteries in electric vehicles, making the them an energy storage platform. This approach makes it possible for households, via an open data platform, to organize their own energy supply cost-effectively and sustainably. This contributes to the challenge of the storage of renewable energy.
The new e-commerce distribution center of Wehkamp in Zwolle is the largest automated distribution center in the world. It enables same-day delivery for customers, as parcels are ready to be sent within 30 minutes. Previously this process took approximately two hours. The center is equipped with new automation techniques that reduces the risk of mistakes to nearly zero. Furthermore, the building is BREEAM certified "Excellent" for sustainability: this is the highest possible score. Solar panels deliver a total of 40 percent of the necessary energy and there is thermal energy is being stored in the building.
RoadDNA by TomTom is a database using a 3D point cloud of roadside patterns compressed into a 2D view of the roadway. This creates a system requiring little storage space and limited processing requirements, without losing detail. It can be used to deliver highly accurate location information to the on-board system of a vehicle. By matching RoadDNA data with vehicle sensor data in real-time a vehicle knows its location on the road, even while traveling at high speeds or when changes occur to the roadside. RoadDNA is expected to support driverless vehicles.
Online transactions are becoming more and more frequent. These transactions need to be fast, universal, and secure. Adyen is a payments technology company that provides businesses a single solution to accept payments anywhere in the world. As the only payments company that has built modern end-to-end infrastructure connecting merchants directly to Visa, MasterCard, and 250 other payment methods globally, Adyen provides merchants with frictionless payments across geographies and channels. Adyen serves more than 4,500 businesses, including 7 of the 10 largest U.S. Internet companies, and 3 of the top 5 global apparel brands.
If we are to address energy and sustainability challenges, domestic buildings need to become more energy-efficient. EnerTwin is a micro Combined Heat and Power (CHP) system where a boiler and a small power plant are combined in a durable device for domestic heating that also produces electricity. It is the first cogeneration system based on a micro turbine. Environmental standards are met with low noise and exhaust emissions. It can be fueled by natural gas, propane, heating oil and biogas. EnerTwin offers great advantages in reliability, life and maintenance costs and it reduces the energy bill by 20-25percent.
The energy transition comes with challenges. Renewable energy still fluctuates in availability and power grids are not yet able to manage new supplies of energy. To overcome these hurdles, the Dutch research institution TNO developed 'PowerMatcher'. This smart energy system solution is a proven way to match energy supply and demand, get the most effective use out of green energy, and prevent overload. PowerMatcher turns ordinary power grids into Smart Grids that efficiently integrate green energy resources, and manage the load with more precision and efficiency. The TNO offers this technology on an open-source platform to accelerate innovation.
Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography simplifies the manufacturing process for the most advanced chips with significant benefits in terms of yield and cycle time. It will help the semiconductor industry to continue Moore's Law well into the next decade by packing more transistors on a chip, reducing cost-per-function and improving energy efficiency. It uses light of a shorter wavelength than the current standard in volume production of the most advanced chips, immersion lithography. EUV can image smaller features without the need for multiple exposures, allowing manufacturers to simplify the manufacturing process, exposing a critical layer of chips in a single step.
Currently consumers need to commit to one or a few content publishers through subscription packages, but looking at the television and music industry this business model is becoming outdated. Blendle is an online platform that changes the way news content is distributed and monetized on. Users have a choice of individual articles from a large variety of news sources. In Blendle's pay-per-view system, articles are priced at an average of 20 cents. Users can ask for a refund if the content did not meet their demand. Blende is a game changer, offering new opportunities for new distributors to reach target audiences.
Hydrogen - also called energy of the future - is a clean and flexible energy carrier that can be converted in electricity by using fuel cells. Currently, hydrogen is produced centrally and transported to the customer by road transportation. Another conventional method to produce hydrogen is by an energy intensive process called electrolysis. HyGear has developed energy efficient hydrogen generators (Hy.GEN) based on steam reforming. The highly energy efficient and small-scale Hy.GEN system can be installed at the customer's site, and offers a safer, more reliable and cost attractive alternative to conventional hydrogen supply. The Hy.GEN also lowers the environmental impact.
Internet use has grown spectacularly in the past decades, reaching a penetration rate of almost 50percent worldwide, and even higher rates in the developed world. Correspondingly, the demand for faster connections has also increased. In collaboration with Alcatel-Lucent, KPN has been improving fixed network internet speeds on copper. This new technique, dubbed VPlus increases VDSL speed to 235 Mbit per second, competitive with fiberglass. In the future, KPN aims to increases speeds even further to 500 Mbit per second, or even one Gb per second by combined VPlus technology with pair-bonding, creating 'Bonded VPlus'.
Often, certain files cannot be sent regularly via email due to file size restrictions. WeTransfer addresses this problem. WeTransfer is a web-based service provider that allows users to send large files up to 2GB via email for free. Without account registration, users can upload files, and end users are notified by email when the files are ready for download. WeTransfer monetizes on this concept by showing users high quality photo advertisements during uploading and downloading. The firm also offers a subscription-based service for larger files and cloud space where these files can be saved.
Catawiki is an online auction house for collectibles that was founded in Assen in 2008. It works on the basis of voluntary contribution to the online catalogue of unique items. The catalogue allows users to track items and their prices and to offer objects up for sale. This functionality distinguishes Catawiki from other operators such as eBay. Objects are not inspected by Catawiki, but the organization included an elaborate system for feedback and evaluation of pieces and auction to maintain authenticity and service quality.
Turning big data into a valuable resource is a challenge that many online platforms face. Since its beginnings as a Dutch start-up, Booking.com has grown exponentially to become one of the world's leading e-commerce companies by successfully leveraging consumer behavior data to continuously optimise its website and mobile apps. With a singular mandate to focus on the customer experience and complete freedom to test new ideas, Booking.com employees are in the driver's seat for all of the company's innovations. This data-driven, democratic approach to product development yields up to 1,000 small-step experiments on a daily basis that drive industry-leading breakthroughs.