Research news

What has happened in terms of research?

Minister Bruins Slot sails with autonomous boat Home Secretary Hanke Bruins Slot visited Vlissingen in February. It was her first working visit. Bruins Slot came to Zeeland as part of the compensation package for the cancelled Marine Barracks. She visited the location in Ritthem where the Extra Secure Prison will be built. At the end of her visit, she was updated on smart mobility by Commissioner Harry van der Maas. In that context, she also sailed a short distance on the ferry, which will be converted in two years' time into a self-propelled boat that will transport passengers between the station and city centre.

The HZ University of Applied Sciences is involved in the project Fieldlab Autonomous Sailing Technology (FAST) via the lectureships Supply Chain Innovation, Data Science, the Research Centre for Coastal Tourism, the Research Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the study programmes Engineering, Marof and ICT, together with project leader Damen Naval, companies and governments.

Thierry Verduin in BNR Eyeopeners

Lector Thierry Verduijn of the lectureship Supply Chain Innovation chair was a guest in BNR Nieuwsradio's Eyeopeners programme. He was interviewed about autonomous transport, one of the topics his lectureship deals with. The podcast of the programme can be listened to here.

Publicatie in Journal of Food Science

Een paper van HZ-student Johan Diepeveen, onderzoeker Tanja Moerdijk van het HZ-lectoraat Marine Biobased Specialties en lector Health and Food Feike van der Leij van InHolland is geaccepteerd door het het Journal of Food Science. Titel van het artikel is 'Molecular Insights in Human Taste Perception and Umami Tastants: A Review’.

De paper beschrijft hoe vanuit chemisch perspectief de smaak van umami wordt beleefd en hoe deze kennis toegepast kan worden om de eetlust te verbeteren van oudere mensen, die door bijvoorbeeld corona of chemotherapie last hebben van smaakverlies. De opdracht is voortgekomen uit het Aahminozuren!-project.

Interview with Olaf Timmermans

'The only continuous thing is change'. This is what lecturer Olaf Timmermans of the Healthy Region lectureship says in a major interview in the Journal of Obstetrics. In the interview, he discusses the balancing act between production and innovation in which many healthcare providers find themselves, both in the hospital and in teams of nurses.

He also explains how political decisions have an impact on daily practice. Of course, he pays a lot of attention to the role of midwives. "In healthcare, protocols and tightly formulated procedures are of elementary importance. At the same time, they impede the innovative behaviour that is so essential for innovations in healthcare."

Maritime Research Platform

The HZ, together with the Hogeschool van Amsterdam, Hogeschool Rotterdam and NHL Stenden, has set up a platform for maritime practice-based research. Is is an important step for applied research in the maritime field.

The four universities of applied sciences want to make better use of each other's knowledge and to develop joint research proposals. The cooperation creates mass and synergy. It also gives the research groups the opportunity to specialise in certain areas of maritime research.

This research is not only about innovations for and on ships, but also about issues such as the energy transition, safety and autonomous sailing. "The maritime domain, which is so important for the Netherlands, faces major social challenges. That is why it is good for universities of applied sciences to work together, so that we can make a relevant contribution", says leading lector Robert Trouwborst of the HZ.

Within the maritime professor platform, the professors inform each other about current and future research, projects and programmes.

How should the Netherlands deal with rising sea levels?

Will we choose to protect ourselves against the water at all costs and continue to raise our dykes, make barriers in the sea or will we move with the sea? Will 'Je retirerai' (I will withdraw) instead of 'Je maintiendrai' (I will maintain) soon be our motto?

The latter is a serious question raised by a number of students from the River Delta Development (RDD) master's programme during their Coastal Systems Track module at the HZ. Four groups of students examined the strategies of Deltares on how the Netherlands should deal with rising sea levels: protecting, moving with the sea and seaward. "We asked the students what these strategies mean for various aspects of the coastal system and Dutch society," says researcher Wietse van de Lageweg of Building with Nature. "In doing so, they combined their knowledge of coastal systems with change processes for sustainable solutions."

The students had to work out all the strategies, such as the idea that is least popular in many people's eyes: moving with the flow. In this strategy, the Netherlands retreats to the east and gives the sea some space. A group of students used a timeline to show how this idea could take shape. Until 2120, when the Dutch motto will be 'Je retirerai', more and more parts of the Netherlands will be flooded. There will be 'wisselpolders', new forms of agriculture, floating houses, 'Almere by the sea' will be created and Utrecht will become the capital of the Netherlands. "Controversial as it may be, the students have thought hard about how this could happen. They showed that dealing with sea level rise is a long-term task, but that decisions affecting this strategy are close at hand."

Less controversial is the seaward strategy. This was also worked out by a group of students. New forms of coastal defence will be introduced at sea, such as artificial islands. It sounds simple, but there is a lot involved.

The other groups worked out the strategy for continuing to protect the Netherlands. There is both an open and a closed variant. In the open variant, the Netherlands continues as before; in the closed option, the Netherlands is cut off from the sea. Students showed that both variants have a great impact on the economy, ecology and society.

Zorghuis van de Toekomst

HZ University of Applied Sciences is a partner in the project 'Zorghuis van de Toekomst'. The initiative aims to jointly ensure that good care will remain accessible in Zeeuws-Vlaanderen in the future and that (future) care workers can be trained, retrained or educated in the region.

In this project, the partners (HZ University of Applied Sciences, ZorgSaam Zorggroep Zeeuws-Vlaanderen. Tragel, VO Zeeuws-Vlaanderen and Scalda) are jointly investigating what is needed and how this can be organised.

Spelen met Strooming

The final conference of the project 'Spelen met Strooming' in February 2022 was a success.

One hundred interested parties had registered for the conference. They were updated by several speakers on the theme 'Tidal Energy in the Netherlands!'

HZ lecturer Jacob van Berkel of the Delta Power chair shared the results of the SIA RAAK project which investigated whether you can use pumps in a dam not only for water safety, but also as turbines to generate energy. The relationship with nature in the waters behind the dam was also monitored. For all presentations and videos, please visit this site.