East Netherlands


Hydrogen project REACT-EU boosts Energy transition in Deventer

The GROHW collective from Deventer can get down to work with the first demonstration of its green hydrogen system. The partnership of local businesses and (knowledge) institutions has been granted a subsidy through the European REACT-EU programme. Oost NL has supported the initiative from the outset and helped GROHW with the subsidy application.


The grant funds will enable GROHW to demonstrate the insights and results from the first phase of the project in several test facilities. The demonstration serves two purposes, explains Raphaël van der Velde, PMC leader Energy Systems at Witteveen + Bos on behalf of the collective: “Firstly, to demonstrate in practice a decentralised controlled hydrogen system over the entire chain: from green electricity production to the purchase of the produced hydrogen and heat.”


The second objective is the practical application of a certified field test unit for highly energy-efficient (natural) gas-fired adsorption heat pumps. “These will also be used in part in the test set-up for the hydrogen system. A total of 20 to 30 heat pumps will be built and tested in homes in the eastern Netherlands,” explains Van der Velde. The heat pumps are produced by Cooll from Enschede.


Deventer – East Netherlands – as pilot location 

The city of Deventer, in the East Netherlands, is the pilot site for the entire hydrogen system. “We are first testing and assembling the components developed for the system in a safe environment at MTSA in Arnhem, after which they will be brought together on the site of De Gasfabriek in Deventer as a demonstration of a green hydrogen system,” says Van der Velde.


This green hydrogen system consists of solar panels linked to an electrolyser. The electrolyser converts the green electricity into green hydrogen, oxygen and heat, storing the hydrogen as an energy buffer. During the winter of 2022-2023, the gas-fired adsorption heat pumps will supply efficiently generated heat to the office building on the De Gasfabriek site in Deventer. In the summer months of 2023, hydrogen will be supplied for an initial pilot with a hydrogen burner at AsfaltNU in Deventer. An energy management system developed by Hanzenet will help to achieve the optimum settings.


Van der Velde: “We see the grant as recognition of the path we have taken. The first activities for the second phase of GROHW have already started.”


Forging a coalition

Oost NL helped to forge the coalition of East Netherlands companies and knowledge institutions in 2019. “As an independent advisor, Oost NL’s goal is to arrive at a collaboration agreement and financing structure that is acceptable to all and advised on the right strategy to successfully apply for a grant from REACT-EU Oost Nederland from our project,” said Van der Velde. Oost NL will remain involved in GROHW, by helping to determine the future operation and financing model. A special conference based on the results of the pilot study will be held on the De Gasfabriek campus in the autumn of 2023.


“Green hydrogen will be given significant opportunities in the future energy and raw materials mix. We recognise these opportunities in the East of the Netherlands. GROHW’s innovative demonstration project is important in demonstrating how we can apply hydrogen as the energy system of the future. It’s great to see what knowledge is available in the region and what cooperation can achieve,” explains Constantijn Cox, senior project manager for energy at Oost NL.



GROHW, which stands for GReen Oxygen, Hydrogen and Waste Heat, is an initiative of Witteveen+Bos, Saxion University of Applied Sciences, HanzeNet, Brandeniers, Rabobank, Asfaltcentrale Stedendriehoek (ACS), Vos Transport, Van Dorp Installaties, MTSA Technopower, HVE, Cooll and HAN University of Applied Sciences. The objective is to arrive at a scalable design in the form of a blueprint that can also be used in other industrial areas in combination with wind and solar parks.



With the REACT-EU programme, Europe is helping the provinces of Overijssel and Gelderland to invest in the rapid economic recovery of COVID-19. Activities that focus on green, digital and resilient recovery of the economy can receive funding for, among other things, testing and demonstrating innovative technologies, services or processes. Do you have questions about REACT-EU and the possibilities for submitting an application? Visit the website of OP-Oost – or contact Oost NL , leadpartner Think East Netherlands.