Recently in Flakkee, Holland, the first Innovation House was officially inaugurated: solar panels, batteries for energy recovery, a shower capable of consuming solely two liters of water thanks to a recycling process, the integrated Giacomini hydrogen combustor with the Solenco power box for the storage of hydrogen, and the Giacomini radiant underfloor systems at low thickness.
At the inauguration, the following attended: Elia Filiberti – CEO of Giacomini Group –, Julien Nyst –Director of the Giacomini branch in Benelux –, and Wim Gijbels – business developer in Holland for Giacomini Benelux-, along with their staff, and Hugo Vandenborre – Manager of Solenco.
“It is the beginning of hydrogen in Holland. – Julien Nyst comments with satisfaction – Giacomini group is enthusiastic about being involved in this project, which demonstrates the real possibility of using clean energy sources in our homes in the very near future.
The first hydrogen house in the Netherlands was officially opened on 11 September. In the village of Stad aan ‘t Haringvliet you will find the Innovathuis that can cover all seasons with green energy from solar panels for a year. The entire installation, consisting of an electrolyser, fuel cell, and a special boiler, fits in a large American fridge. Energy from the solar panels is stored in two large batteries and there is a storage tank for hydrogen in the garden. An extremely innovative experiment written by Marcus Rolloos. The interest at the official opening was therefore great. Hundreds of visitors came from the Netherlands and Belgium.
The installation of the hydrogen dwelling cannot be very large. The property is a normal terraced house, although at the end and with a garage, with 30 solar panels on the roof, underfloor heating, and excellent insulation. By Dutch standards, it is not a special home, of which there are thousands or perhaps tens of thousands in the country. And that also means that washing is possible here, with green energy, can be repeated effortlessly in many other places. The central heating boiler in the home works with a catalytic burner.
Marijke de Wit and Jean-Paul Scheurleer van Wonen at Flakkee are firmly convinced that hydrogen is the solution to bridge seasonal cycles with sustainable energy. They see heat pumps, certainly air heat pumps, as an interim solution. “And in the long run, electric batteries might last two weeks without the sun, but never an entire winter.” And according to the duo, a future is off-grid that we are heading towards. This is possible with homes that convert the surplus solar energy of the summer months into hydrogen. Despite that, while converting power to hydrogen and back again about 60% of the energy is lost, De Wit and Scheurleer do not see that as a problem. ‘Solar energy is free, a matter of installing enough solar panels. We want to show that in this normal Dutch home.
It has been brewing at Scheurleer for some time. In recent years he has studied the possibilities of hydrogen intensively and gradually it became clear to him what role hydrogen should play. At the same time, his surprise increased that it is mainly talked about, but so little concrete is tried out. Gradually the idea arose to get started with it. The initiative fits in seamlessly with the goal of the island of Goeree-Overflakkee to be energy neutral.
The so-called Powerbox is unique and new within the project. No straight case, but version with an Italian design. This was developed in collaboration with Hugo Vandenborre. He is the director of the Solenco Power company from Belgium and specializes in green energy solutions for homes. The Powerbox gets a place in the garage and is connected to a hydrogen tank with a capacity of 1200 liters in the garden. A buffer of hydrogen is stored under 30 bar. There is a fuel cell in the power box. If the home requires more bent than this fuel cell can deliver, a built-in battery comes to the rescue. There is a 4 kW battery on the top floor that is charged by solar panels during the day and meets the demand for electricity in the evening and at night. If required, additional batteries can be added.
After the official opening, the house will mainly be used as a knowledge center for information purposes and demonstrations in the first half of the year. After that, it is the intention to accommodate test residents. But Scheurleer is so involved in the experiment that he cannot rule out the fact that he himself is the first to move to the Innovathuis for six months. Then he can personally experience what it is like to live in a hydrogen home.