The qualifying round of the 2nd edition of the Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge was held in Bleiswijk on Thursday 12 September. The Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge is a competition is organised by Wageningen University (WUR). Over a period of six months, the teams compete with each other to produce the maximum harvest with the minimum energy consumption.
The most important requirement is that they manage the greenhouse environment remotely using sensor data, climate control models, and plant growth models.
They are not allowed to enter the greenhouse at any time during the period of six months.
Van der Hoeven was part of one of the teams that managed to win a place in the final. Of the 21 teams that started the competition, the top five will compete in December for the ultimate prize during the practical trials at the WUR in Bleiswijk. Van der Hoeven formed its team, called ‘Automatoes’, together with Hoogendoorn Growth Management and TU Delft. The team members representing Van der Hoeven are Leonard Baart de la Faille and Tim Tijsma. They are both looking forward to the final stage of the challenge.
“This challenge allows Van der Hoeven to put its vision on innovation into practice, so it's great to be part of the team! The ability to regulate greenhouse cultivation and climate using sensors, data, and models, with less need for corrective action by the grower, is definitely the way forward. And now we are making it happen. Winning the qualifying round in September has definitely got us excited about putting together a great system for the final in December,” explained Leonard.