Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) to participate in Interreg NWE PowerVIBES project

Project: Research direct

Description

All over Europe, festivals take the lead in finding innovative ways to use resources intelligently, employ renewable systems and reduce emissions. Yet at these festivals, diesel generators are still the most employed source to provide electricity due to a large amount of power needed. Using diesel to generate electricity has big disadvantages: substantial CO2 emissions, noise annoyance of droning generators, and bad smell. The latest developments in renewable energy, for instance vertical axis wind turbines, more efficient solar panels, improved batteries, now allow an efficient and economically attractive approach to produce large amounts of power from sustainable resources only.

The Interreg NWE PowerVIBES project introduces the GEM-Tower. This tower aims to reduce festivals’ carbon footprint by 20% by making diesel generators superfluous. Instead, affordable and reliable energy is produced from renewable resources wind, biomass, and solar power. To illustrate, if the Netherlands’ summer festivals cut their diesel consumption by 10%, over 1,000,000 liters of diesel and over 3,000 tonnes of CO2 are saved annually.

This GEM-Tower combines a vertical axis wind turbine, PV panels, and a battery, all customized in a containerized unit and with a bio-fuel generator as back-up. All are connected in a smart grid. Two of such transportable GEM-towers (with smart grid) will be built and tested on in total 16 festival sites. This extensive testing regime is essential because of large differences among festivals, as they operate under significantly different legal, technical, seasonal, locational, and environmental conditions. This process of reflection and feedback (with a loop of testing-analysing-adjusting-implementing after each test) leads to a (practically) universally applicable system, to be used in all countries of the NWE region. This energy production is completely clean. Therefore, GEM-tower will be clearly visible on a festival site to reach an audience of millions that experiences this sustainable energy concept.

As lead partner, TU/e’s Department of the Built Environment is involved and responsible for project PowerVIBES. The key focus is on coordination and communication. In technical respect, TU/e brings in expertise from industrialized modules with main domains: architectural design, structural design, building & material technology, and construction technology.
Festival organisers are involved to give input, because various festival grounds have different ideas, experiences, insights into possibilities and impossibilities, opportunities and not to forget requirements of codes and economic considerations.

TU/e’s Department of the Built Environment fulfils the complex role of coordination.
Project manager Faas Moonen and PDEng trainees Patrick Lenaers, Floor van Schie, Marius Lazauskas and Sandrius Ungurys are the driving force in this multidisciplinary development team. They work full-time on project PowerVIBES and their main role is integration of all input.

Project management: Faas Moonen and Moniek Sanders
Technical engineers: Patrick Lenaers, Floor van Schie, Marius Lazauskas and Sandrius Ungurys
PostDoc: Ester Pujadas-Gispert

Time line
2017-2021

Layman's description

Sustainable solution for the festival market: delivering reliable power by a decentralized hybrid solar & wind energy system (PowerVIBES)
Short titleGEM-Tower
StatusActive
Effective start/end date20/09/1719/09/20