The technology students who came to the HTCC morning program were still present at Resato when the first visitors to the open day arrived for their guided tour.
In his easy-to-recognize Resato polo shirt, director and co-owner Ton Driessen guided the first batch of interested visitors through his factory. The spectacular water-jet cutter drew a lot of attention. Driessen explained: “With a pressure of as much as 4,000 bar, the water jet cuts virtually any material, such as aluminum, steel, copper and titanium.” Water-jet cutting can also be used to process glass, plastics and composites because it generates no heat and emits no harmful gases. “What the strongest diamond cutters can’t achieve, we manage to cut with our water-jet cutter.’’ Resato’s water-jet cutters are sold to companies all over the world and you find them, for instance, in the car industry and in factories where they cut metal and plastic plates to assemble machines.
Children could play with Dash, a little floor robot that is operated with special apps on an iPad. FME, the Dutch employer’s association for the technology industry, had laid out a robot playground where kids had to guide their robot along a prescribed course. This proved more difficult than it initially looked, but was fun all the same. The children were enthusiastic and so were their parents. This toy may have been designed for kids from 5 to 13, but anyone older than the intended age group could also have fun with it. Teens and adults could write their own app to control the robot.
The high-tech companies of the Innovation Cluster Drachten presented themselves at the techno playground. Here visitors could acquaint themselves with all kinds of practical applications of technology. PerkinElmer showed a machine that checks the milk quality immediately after milking. values measured help farmers establish how healthy each cow is. Neopost, known for its fully automatic packing machines for web shops, allowed children to build their own metal mini plane with machine components. Besides its high-end shaver, Philips also showed mini models of vacuum cleaners and a human hand, printed with the brand-new industry-grade plastic printer. Employees of Ventura could come to business right away when a visitor was interested in one of their vacancies.
The solar boat of the WhisperPower Solar Team got a lot of attention as well. The boat the team uses for this year’s solar boat races is a highly improved version. “We reduced the weight of last year’s boat by as much as 120 kilograms, which means that it lost almost half of its weight,” explained team manager Jeroen Antonisse. His team of six worked hard on this, together with, amongst others, engineers of high-tech company WhisperPower. “This year we want to end in the top three,” said Antonisse. The first race the team will take part in is on Friday 31 May and Saturday 1 June during the National Championship Solar Boat Racing in Akkrum.