On 2-3 December 2019, the European Research Council organized its annual conference, this time entitled: Frontier Research: Creating Pathways to Sustainability.
The aim of the conference was to show the interdisciplinary work carried out by the ERC-funded researchers around the concept of “sustainability”. Among the topics that were discussed, the ERC highlighted the relevance of those research lines that help identify ways to achieve “Affordable and Clean Energy”. Demand for energy is increasing, and substantial investments are needed in innovative clean energy production and storage that can replace fossil fuels. There is a need for developing a broader portfolio of cost-effective renewable energy sources and technologies, including new solutions for energy storage, and innovative techniques for thermal insulation. At the same time, institutional and market design innovation is needed in order to create efficient carbon-free power markets.
Natalia Fabra, head of EnergyEcoLab, presented the main ongoing results of her ERC project ELECTRIC CHALLENGES. It was very inspiring to also listen to other researchers pushing in the same direction from very different angles. Prof. Giulia Grancini presented her project HY-NANO in which she aims to improve the efficiency of solar energy. Prof. Ballottari described his SOLENALGAE project on how microalgal cultures can be used as a source of renewable energy, via improving their photosynthetic solar energy conversion into chemical energy. Prof. Papakonstantinou presented his work in the project IntelGlazing which develops new technologies to reduce the level of heat-exchange through windows, thereby reducing the energy needed for regulating the temperature of buildings.
The whole video of the session can be seen here
Natalia Fabra’s lecture starts on min 9:42:40.