Meet the Smart Energy Delivery Lab, in short … the SEnD Lab. A full-fledged learning and experimentation environment where modern energy research and hands-on education come together. Here it’s all about balancing and aligning energy supply and demand through smart grids.
On the one hand, there are more and more different energy sources as we generate energy from sun and wind. On the other hand, energy demand from consumers and businesses continues to fluctuate. By cleverly controlling the energy flows in combination with storage, we balance supply and demand. With this lab, Avans is fully committed to becoming the regional knowledge center for energy transition.
What makes the lab so special is that students, teachers and researchers are working here together with companies, governments and other knowledge institutions to accelerate the energy transition. The facilities can be used for all kinds of current issues. These include questions such as “how can we make an electric car part of a building’s energy system?” Or “how can we regulate energy flows smarter so that the power grid doesn’t get filled up by solar panels.” In the SEnD lab, you can see exactly why and how this grid congestion occurs. And perhaps more importantly … what you can do about it.
Where it all began
The founders of the SEnD Lab are the Smart Energy research group and the Academy of Technology and Innovation (ATix). Researcher Redouane Eddeane always had the desire to make an Avans classroom energy neutral. So the original plan was to develop his own lab with components. Together with companies that wanted to do something for technical and ICt education. However, during a conference, Jack Doomernik, professor Smart Energy, came into contact with the company New Age Learning. With that, the original plan quickly changed. It was then decided to jointly transform something that already existed into a lab. Thus, with the help of knowledge and materials from companies, research projects and students, the SEnD lab has continued to grow in recent years. The SEnD Lab now consists of 2 components: an Energy Neutral Local and a Smart Grid setup by Lucas Nülle.
Working remotely through Remote Labs
The idea behind Remote Labs came later. Through Remote Labs, students and companies can now perform their tests and labs remotely. So just enjoy working on the physical setup from home or from another educational institution at your convenience. This has several advantages. For example, you can also gain knowledge remotely and find companies with each other. It provides much more flexibility for the user and installations are used more efficiently from other locations. For the realization of Remote Labs, the SenD Lab cooperates with the Control System group of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering of the TU/e.
Inspired and involved
One of the ambassadors is researcher Redouane Eddeane. He has been involved in the creation and further development of the lab from day 1. He sees the SEnD Lab as a real playground, partly designed by the students themselves, where there is plenty of daily experimentation and learning. This creates a challenging atmosphere for everyone involved in the lab. When you walk in you notice it immediately, here people work with great enthusiasm to make the energy transition a success. “It energizes me to see the students grow” says Redouane. “I have achieved my goal when a student has enough confidence to take the lead themselves to contribute to solving the climate problem.”
Redouane hopes that in the future even more people will embrace the SEnD Lab. After all, this will ensure that the lab can continue to grow and that there will be more similar labs in MBO and HBO. Because by working together we can exchange ideas and knowledge and inspire each other. These ambitions can only be realized when there is intensive cooperation with our stakeholders. For example, together we can focus on making the urban environment energy neutral and make smart use of electricity networks and sustainable energy sources. In this way can we make society a lot more energy efficient and beautiful.
Education and research, the perfect combination
The SEnD Lab is a 50/50 collaboration between the Smart Energy research group and the Academy of Technology and Innovation (ATix) The research group is fueled by society’s need for a sustainable energy supply. The focus here is on energy conservation and the incorporation and coupling of sustainable energy in the daily practice of consumers, governments and business. ATix is committed to connecting the collaboration between education, research and business. This links education to the research agenda, which provides added value for students. It puts them in direct contact with new research and techniques from research groups. The SEnD Lab is one of the few labs where hands-on engineering education and research come together so clearly.
Feel free to visit the SEnD Lab in LA121 on the 1st floor of Lovendijkstraat 61 in Breda and be surprised! Or contact professor Smart Energy Jack Doomernik or researcher Redouane Eddeane. They will gladly tell you more about all the possibilities the SEnD Lab has to offer.