Groningen student team wins Electe competition

Electe23 Electrification Summit

EIES22 – A student team from the University of Groningen has won the Electe scenario competition. In a white paper, the team put themselves in the shoes of technology company Haldor Topsoe, and wrote a plan to use innovative solid oxide electrolysis cells (SOEC) to make Tata’s steel production in IJmuiden more sustainable. In 2023, the three students may travel with the Electro Trail Europe (Electe)

Last week the Electe competition had its denouement, during EIES22 at Brightlands Chemelot Campus. Three final teams presented their white paper. Intense papers they described three promising electrification routes for industry.


The assignment from the organizers shared innovation program Voltachem and journalistic media company Industrielinqs was clear. Write an investment proposal for a technology that can make an important step in the much-needed industrial transformation around 2035. Based on electrification and or electrochemistry. In doing so, the teams of young professionals should above all find answers to who, what, where, when, why and how?

Three finalists:

  • Team University of Groningen (RuG).
    The student team from Groningen chose an interesting angle. Identifying with technology company Haldor Topsoe, the team chose a current challenge: the greening of Tata Steel in IJmuiden. As a technology, the team chose the innovative solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC).

  • Team University of Maastricht/Brightsite
    In their white paper, researchers and young professionals described the possibilities of plasma technology. With this technique, hydrogen and other chemical building blocks can be produced, without a huge CO2 emission. Interesting for the sustainable ambitions of chemical clusters like Chemelot.

  • Team TNO
    Young professionals at TNO also see a lot of potential in the solid oxide electrolysis cell. That team is broadening the scope. SOECs will soon offer an excellent technological basis for the production of syngas as a feedstock for the production of synthetic fuels and chemicals.

Successor to HYTE

On Nov. 30, the RuG student team’s entry emerged as the winner. After a detailed examination of the white papers by six judges and their seconds, that team was already slight favorite. After a pitch battle during European Industry and Energy Summit 2022, the team also appeared to receive enough points from the audience present to take the win. In the summer of 2023, Alessia De Gregorio, Alexandru Trofin and Cosmina Mighiu will visit various electrification and electrochemical projects in Europe with Voltachem, Industrielinqs and various partners. Among others: BASF and Sabic. This makes Electe the successor to the Hydrogen Trail Europe, which was completed last summer.

Partners wanted

For the trail Voltachem and Industrielinqs are still looking for partners who will help shape the route, give an assignment or send a young professional along. For more information, please contact editor-in-chief Wim Raaijen,

Wim Raaijen
I am a creative publisher, editor in chief, writer, vlogger and moderator with a journalistic and philosophic based view. Trying to re-invent the concept of publishing, based on platforms and partners, instead of separated media and advertisements. I am interested in industrial subjects like transition, sustainability, safety, energy efficiency, innovation and responsibility.