Brightsite looks back on successful ‘Meet our scientists’ event, with highly relevant and scalable bio-based research as award-winning project


In May, for the third consecutive year, the Brightsite community shared its latest innovations, research and projects at the ‘Meet our scientists’ event. In recent years, it has grown from a team meeting to an event for the Brightsite community, customers and other interested parties, with this year no fewer than 30 posters on promising Brightsite projects, presented by enthusiastic project managers and researchers to the 100 visitors.

Deep-dive into new routes in areas such as plasma technology, bio-based and recycling

Programme manager Rinke Altink provided the kick-off and wished the visitors many inspiring conversations with those directly involved from Brightsite partners Sitech, TNO, Maastricht University and Brightlands Chemelot Campus, which allowed people to really get in-depth and share insights on very diverse topics. He also introduced the five-member jury, which, led by Emmo Meijer, would choose the poster with the most inspiring idea that afternoon. Besides Emmo Meijer (Advisory Board Brightsite), the jury consisted of Anna Wilbik (professor of Data Fusion and Intelligent Interaction), Richard van de Sanden (scientific director Eindhoven Institute for Renewable Energy Systems), Loek Radix (director Chemelot) and Paul Brandts (intelligence officer Brightsite).

“I see so much knowledge here today; this is the selection of competence that we need to find new routes of European top level.”
Arnold Stokking, managing director Brightsite

As we walked around, we heard from visitors that the spontaneity to connect with each other and the variety of topics provided valuable contacts, to take steps together, to make the chemical industry more sustainable.

Jury verdict: these projects help take the next step

Emmo Meijer cited that there is not much time left to make the chemical industry sustainable and a coherent picture of what this looks like is needed. These Brightsite projects are helping to take the next step. On behalf of the jury, he mentioned four topics that caught the jury’s eye. First, the new breakthrough in SCIARS (Source, Commodity, Intermediate, Application, Resource and back again to Source), the ‘road map’ that provides insight into routes to the future and shows the transition paths to climate neutral. Secondly, the research into microplastics in wastewater, a much-discussed topic that, with these concrete indications of the type and quantity of microplastics, offers starting points to work with companies at Chemelot in a targeted way to further reduce microplastics losses. The third poster that stood out was BLIC vooruit, the brand-new Safety Deal Handreiking that shows us how we should look at incidents with innovations such as artificial intelligence and how, with good recordings of small incidents, we can prevent large incidents.

“I see a lot of progress and projects to be implemented, that’s the name of the game!”
Emmo Meijer, Brightsite Advisory Board and jury chairman

As the winning poster, the jury chose the study on bio-based routes for ACN, praising the impact and scalability of this research with great relevance for making the Chemelot site sustainable. Starting from the two main options for the production of bio-based ACN, the team members looked at the different routes, with recommendations for processes, as well as trade-offs regarding the CO2 footprint. Program manager Celine Fellay accepted the cheque for 5,000 euros on behalf of the team and recalled the power of cooperation in achieving this result, both within the team and with scientists from ACN company AnQore.

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