Projects

Ongoing Projects


EIT Regional Innovation Scheme (EIT RIS) 2016

Climate-KIC, Europe’s largest public-private innovation partnership focused on climate change, launched a call in 2016 to recruit regions to participate in its EIT Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS). The EIT RIS is a structured outreach scheme to support the integration of the knowledge triangle (education, research, business) and increase the innovation capacity in regions in Europe not yet directly benefitting from the EIT and its KICs.

Our consortium (Cyprus University of Technology, Chrysalis LEAP and the Cyprus Energy Agency) envisions the creation of a centre of climate innovation through the clustering of joint “AZ” innovation activities of the three consortium partners as well as other collaborators from our network to create climate entrepreneurs which will influence the region and beyond, such as the neighbouring countries of Middle East and North Africa, as well as Greece and Turkey. Our RIS centre aims to facilitate and champion a transition of academic applied research into entrepreneurial innovation. Aligned with the thematic priorities of the Cyprus Smart Specialization Strategy we will focus on solar energy (including production, solar cooling and heating) and water management (including water resources, wastewater management, flooding). At a later stage when the centre is established we will also pursue actions in energy efficiency in buildings and construction as well as sustainable mobility and logistics, which also lie within the interests of the research units at CUT, Chrysalis LEAP startup training activities and CEA’s demonstration projects.

Running time: 2016-2023
Funding agency: European Commission Horizon 2020 Programme
Project website: N/A


An ENErgy Retrofit FUNDing rating tool (ENERFUND)

ENERFUND is a tool that will rate and score deep renovation opportunities – like a credit score used by banks to rate clients. The tool will be based on a methodology to be developed and on a set of parameters such as EPC data, number of certified installers, governmental schemes running, etc. By providing a rating for deep renovation opportunities – whether for private establishments or for public buildings – funding institutes can provide targeted loans, retrofit companies can identify sound opportunities, municipalities can promote targeted incentives and the public’s trust for retrofitting will be enhanced.

The objectives of the current proposal is to (a) analyse the status quo and needs of deep renovation stakeholders and the public, (b) build upon the outcomes of previous projects to create a tool for deep renovation financing, (c) promote the tool to all interested stakeholders, (d) measure and document the impact of the tool on deep renovation strategies and financing and (e) provide a powerful tool that will assist EU stakeholders meet their obligations on increasing renovation rates.
The partners, from 12 countries, include 2 universities, in charge of the project management and the development of the methodology behind the tool, 2 SMEs with extensive experience on database management, EPC mapping, development of online decision-making tools, and 11 Ministries, Energy Agencies, NGOs, etc that are connected with the relevant stakeholders throughout Europe and can promote the tool.

The expected impact is approximately 45GWh due to the use of the tool to promote deep renovation of buildings and through our training and dissemination activities. ENERFUND will account for approximately 1% of the current annual renovation rate during the project duration. The strategic, long term aim is to provide a unified global tool for the promotion, not only of deep renovation of buildings, but of all energy related activities in the building sector.

Running time: 2016-2019
Funding agency: European Commission Horizon 2020 Programme
Project website: http://www.enerfund.eu/


INvestigation of Structural Integrity and Stability of Sandwich sTructures (INSIST)

INSIST is an experimental investigation on the structural integrity and stability of novel steel foam sandwich panels (SFSPs) under monotonic and cyclic loading.  The response of single density and graded properties cores will be studied and the differences in the observed failure modes will be quantified. Furthermore the project will explore the response of welded end-plates in steel foam sandwich panels and testing the strength and tolerance of the connection under static load and fatigue. Also a pilot corrosion test will take place in order to observe the failure propagation in fatigue within a corrosive environment. These tests are essential and will pave the way for the use of SFSPs-a novel material- in structural engineering applications. Moreover, the project seeks to explore biomimetic optimized applications for steel foam sandwich panels in the offshore and marine sector that can perform more than one function, such as weight, vibration damping and even provide data for structural health monitoring purposes.

The overarching aim of this project is the training of the researcher in the field of experimental structural stability and integrity specific to novel functionally optimized components pertinent to offshore and marine engineering, at Cranfield University’s Offshore Renewable Energy Engineering Structural Integrity Lab. The purpose of this fellowship will be to equip the researcher with the necessary skills to pursue independent experimental and computational research in structural integrity of offshore structures and other safety critical structures pertinent to the Energy industry which is an emerging industry in the Eastern Mediterranean and Cyprus, where the researcher’s home institution is located (Cyprus University of Technology), as well as an industry of critical importance for Europe’s Energy Security.

Running time: 2015-2017
Funding agency: European Commission FP7 Programme
Project website: http://www.insist-eu.weebly.com/


Advancing knowledge on seaweed growth and development (PHYCOMORPH)

Currently, seaweed aquaculture practices rely mainly on empirical “seaweed gardening” techniques. An illustration is the preparation of production lines for the culture of Porphyra purpurea in France, for which blank lines are simply immersed in the sea, and are expected to be colonised by drifting naturally-produced Porphyra germlings. Therefore, while the requirement to improve aquaculture practices is increasing, major bottlenecks are evident, which must be solved before deploying seaweed aquaculture to a more specific and/or a wider range.

The principal objective of PHYCOMORPH is to increase fundamental knowledge about macroalgal growth, development and reproduction, and to improve sustainable seaweed aquaculture. This will be performed by combining (i) our PHYCOMORPH partners’ academic understanding of the many biological processes that control macroalgal development, with (ii) the know-how of Research & Development organisations dedicated to knowledge transfer and the creation of innovative seaweed industries. Ultimately, the Action will be a catalyst for further development and coordination of research dedicated to a better understanding of the physiological, cellular, molecular and genetic mechanisms that control macroalgal growth and development, and further identification of the critical elements of aquaculture and bloom management.

Running time: 2015-2017
Funding agency: European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST)
Project website: http://www.phycomorph.org/


ClimateLaunchpad Ideas Competition

Climate-KIC’s ClimateLaunchpad is the world’s largest cleantech business idea competition. It’s mission is to unlock Europe’s cleantech potential that addresses climate change. The competition creates a stage for those ideas. ClimateLaunchpad is part of the Entrepreneurship offerings of the Climate-KIC Accelerator, the world’s first real-life business school for promising cleantech entrepreneurs. With fast-track entrepreneurship education, top-notch tools & techniques and intensive coaching. In three stages the 18-month programme works with start-ups to get funded and launch their products worldwide. The grants that come along with each Accelerator phase are generous, but the dedicated guidance is more than money can buy. The Top-10 of ClimateLaunchpad’s European Final get accepted into Climate-KIC Accelerator.

Running time: 2014-2017
Funding agencies: Climate-KIC of EIT
Project website: http://www.chrysalisleap.com/


A European University-Business Alliance aiming to foster young SCIEntists’ ENTrepreneurial spirit (SCIENT)

The EU needs researchers who not only discover new things, but transfer knowledge to others, for maximum social and economic benefit. To this end, SCIENT, will develop an innovative entrepreneurship programme for PhD STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) students and graduates, giving them an insight out of the ivory tower of pure research, developing their transversal skills and providing them with a new professional path.

By identifying the strengths, weaknesses, gaps and best practices of existing entrepreneurship programmes, a unique and top quality programme will emerge. Currently there is no such programme in the EU. This will be pilot tested in 7 countries (CY, PT, ES, IT, LT, UK, MT) and offered to interested stakeholders once finalized.

Running time: 2014-2017
Funding agency: European Commision ERASMUS + Programme
Project website: http://www.euscient.eu/


Completed Projects


Effect of Clouds on Solar Irradiance (PROGNOSIS)

Through PROGNOSIS, an advanced novel algorithm was developed to compute the components of solar irradiance using as exogenous input only the state of the sky using low cost equipment. The components of solar irradiance computed were: Global irradiance, Diffuse irradiance, Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI) and Ultraviolet (UV) irradiance. The developed models were applied in the two participating countries using on-site measurements at both countries, thus addressing the different climate conditions of central Europe and Mediterranean Sea. The only exogenous inputs to the final model consisted of pictures of the state sky from the all-sky camera. All-sky cameras are special cameras, equipped with a fish eye lens that provides an 180o view of the sky.

Through the project, significant progress was made in the understanding of the influence of clouds on solar irradiance, which will apply to a variety of application such as solar energy applications (Photovoltaics, solar thermal applications), Building Management Systems (BMS), biology, agriculture and in medical research. Additionally, the model developed may become part of an integrated model for the prediction of incident solar irradiance based on Cloud Motion Vectors (CMV).

Running time: 2014-2015
Funding agency: Research Promotion Foundation (Cyprus)
Project website: http://www.unitbv.ro/ecsol-prognosis/en-us/project.aspx


European Energy Efficient Buildings Map (ENERMAP)

Currently there is no easy way for the public, energy product suppliers, utility companies and municipalities to utilize the energy information given in Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) of buildings. This is due to the fact that the information available is stored in such a way that it is not accessible by everyone in an efficient way. Through ENERMAP, an online platform that displays the EPCs, along with other energy data in an easy way and with the user in mind, was developed. It displays this information in the form of a map, but other websites will also be able to pull this information and display it on their website through the use of an API. ENERMAP is now a start-up company, currently focusing on expanding its database in order to increase consumer awareness on building energy performance, as well as providing tools for both consumers and businesses to make educated decisions for where they choose to live, shop, and work.

Running time: 2012-2014
Funding agency: Climate KIC
Project website: http://www.enermap.eu/


Cogeneration of clean water and renewable energy from waste water using macroalgae

Sewage disposal is a major environmental issue and the removal of pollutants is necessary to protect the environment. Cyprus, in the last few decades, has showed great improvement in the area of sewage treatment, by harmonization with the EU regulations. Nevertheless, regulations for controlling domestic commercial and industrial wastes for many years did not include agricultural wastes. Nowadays, agricultural waste is subject to new rules. The farmers have an obligation to ensure that agricultural wastes will not cause pollution of the environment or harm to human health. Therefore, waste legislation is intended to protect the environment and human health for the benefit of farmers and consumers.

However the conventional treatment methods are costly in terms of both construction and maintenance. Undoubtedly, there is need for effective, less demanding and environmentally friendly alternative pollution control technologies. In current decades, work has been conducted worldwide on phytoremediation of sewage, i.e. biofilters have been developed as alternative systems for treating different types of waste streams. Many countries have tried to use microalgae and macroalgae as biofilters for the removing of nutrients and metals from some waste streams. However, more research is needed in designing suitable macroalgae biofiltration systems, focusing on different algae species and technologies that will treat various waste streams. Thus, a worldwide investigation might lead to an economically feasible commercial technology and an evaluation of a value–added use of the biomass produced.

Through this project, a suitable methodology for the swine’s waste water treatment using the most favourable species of macroalgae at a laboratory plant based on real conditions was designed and developed. Furthermore, the quality of the treated water based on conventional quality techniques and ensure harmonisation to the EU legislations was examined and biofuels were produced from the excess macroalgae biomass.

Running time: 2012-2014
Funding agency: Cyprus Research Promotion Foundation


Development of a Geo-spatial Environmental and Decision Support System for Incident Management and Impact Analysis (EKTIMISIS)

The overall aim of this project was to develop a GIS, tool and methodology (named EKTIMISIS, Greek for “assessment”) for rapid deployment of geo-spatial decision support systems (DSS) to assess incidents and the extent of each incident relative to environmental impacts, determining locations for sources of energy including development, commercialization, and deployment of renewable and alternative energy technologies and solutions, addressing issues on EU regulatory compliance and sustainable development, evaluating disaster preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation projects, and to generate maps and reports relative to those incidents.

Running time: 2012-2014
Funding agency: Cyprus Research Promotion Foundation
Project website: http://www.ektimisis.com/

Wood Biomass Utilization in Cyprus and Assessment of Social, Economic and Environmental Impacts

Wood biomass is considered as a very important energy source for heating and cooking, especially for the mountainous and rural island communities of Europe. The aim of this paper is to determine comprehensively the wood biomass quantities consumed in the mountain areas of Cyprus; additionally the origin of biomass, the implications of the uncontrolled use and overexploitation of wood biomass as well as the evaluation of the social and economic impacts.

This project involved the identification of the quantities and the origin of wood biomass consumed in the mountainous communities of Cyprus along with the analysis of data collected through a structured questionnaire and a dedicated field door-to-door research. In addition measurements of the variation of air quality (CO2, CO, NOX, PM2.5, PM10, TPM) were carried out, during winter and summer for both indoor and outdoor air quality for the households identified that utilize wood biomass either for space heating and/or cooking purposes. Comparable measurements were performed in houses that use energy efficient fireplaces in order to record any changes/improvement in air quality.

Running time: 2010-2012
Funding agency: Cyprus Research Promotion Foundation
Project website: http://www.cea.org.cy/biomass/