Bosman Van Zaal is building a third research greenhouse for Wageningen University & Research (WUR) on the Wageningen campus. This greenhouse will be used by WUR's experimental company Unifarm for scientific insect research and education on plants.
Turnkey insect greenhouse
The (PKb-I and PKM-II) research greenhouse, where research will be carried out on insects on plants, consists of a Venlo greenhouse with a total surface area of 792 m2 and 22 cultivation sections (compartments). The insect greenhouse has been designed by Unifarm in collaboration with DLV. At the end of January 2021, Bosman Van Zaal started with the engineering of the turnkey insect greenhouse, and construction started at the end of June. All growing departments are air-conditioned with their own recirculation air treatment unit (AHU). This means that a different climate can be created in each department. This is done by heating, cooling or dehumidifying the air in the AHU.
The entire water installation and electrical systems are also being realised by Bosman Van Zaal. All the necessary heat and cold energy are supplied from Energia, which is connected to the heat and cold storage ring pipeline on the campus. No natural gas is used to heat the greenhouse in the winter; this is done by means of heat pumps. The cold that is produced during this process is stored in the heat and cold storage ring pipeline and is used in the summer to cool the greenhouse. Finally, a Hoogendoorn IIVO computer extension is installed. The expected completion of the insect greenhouse is mid-December 2021.
Unifarm's core task is to provide service in the execution of plant and crop research and education within WUR. The group of 50 employees has a lot of professional knowledge, practical experience and technical insight. Plants are grown and trials are carried out on 240 ha of trial fields with various types of soil and in 15,000 m2 of greenhouse areas, climate cells and climate cabinets. Unifarm also has cold stores and freezer rooms, storage rooms, processing rooms, drying ovens, measuring equipment and extensive machinery. Unifarm is a staff organisation of the Plant Sciences Group, which is a collaboration of Wageningen University Plant Sciences and Wageningen Plant Research.
The Wageningen University & Research Unifarm site already includes Serre Red, where plant diseases are investigated in a quarantine greenhouse, the NPEC greenhouse where phenotyping takes place, and the Energia building where the technical climate installations for the site are located. All were realised on a turnkey basis by Bosman Van Zaal.