CIDAUT has led the organization of a meeting to analyze the opportunities of the strategic project for the recovery and economic transformation (PERTE) of the aerospace sector.

On 28 june 2022 the innovation ecosystem of the aerospace sector of Castilla y Leon met place in León Technological Park (Leon, Spain) to analyze the opportunities of the strategic project for the recovery and economic transformation (PERTE) of the aerospace sector

Aerospace Economic Recovery and Transformation (PERTE), is a public-private collaboration instrument to boost science and innovation in the aerospace field with the aim of responding to the challenges of the sector, such as climate change, global security and digital transition. Thanks to this strategic project, public administrations, companies and R&D&I centers will have the opportunity to work in coordination to strengthen the capabilities of the aeronautical and space industry, promoting the development and implementation of innovative technologies, including technologies that support the development of the zero-emission aircraft. The Aerospace PERTE also aims to strengthen Spain’s position in the space sector with initiatives such as the creation of the Spanish Space Agency, which will establish new mechanisms to coordinate space activities at the national level and Spanish participation in international programs.

Within this framework, last Monday 28th of June took place in the Leon Technological Park (León, Spain) an important event which brought together a broad representation of Castilla y León´s innovation ecosystem of the aerospace sector. This event was organized by CIDAUT Foundation and CTME in cooperation with Institute for Business Competitiveness of Castilla y León (ICE) under the training and support Program for R&D Business Centr@Tec.

The official opening of this event was carried out by Mr. Carlos Javier Fernández Carriedo (Councilor for Economy and Treasury of the Regional Government of Castilla y León), Mrs. Teresa Riesgo (President of the Center for Industrial Technological Development CDTI and Secretary General of Innovation of the Ministry of Science and Innovation of the Government of Spain), Mr. Joaquín Barreiro García (Director of the Faculty of Industrial, Computer Science and Aerospace Engineering at the University of León) and Mr. José Antonio Diez (Mayor of León).

Next, Mr. Roberto Trigo Martínez (Head of the Department of Large Scientific Facilities and Dual Programs at CDTI) and Mr. Vicente Giner Herrera (Responsible for Telecommunications Programs in the Space Department of CDTI) showed the Aerospace PERTE as a strategic project for the recovery and economic transformation of the national aerospace sector, deepening both in the aeronautical pillar (Aeronautical Technological Program – PTA) as in the space pillar.

The final event proceeded with a discussion panel composed by a representation of Castilla y León´s innovation ecosystem of the aerospace sector: Mr. Ignacio Fernández Baragaño (Communication and Institutional Relations Manager of Grupo Aciturri Aeronáutica), Mrs. Pilar Rodríguez (Head of Capgemini Market Strategy and Innovation Solutions), Mr. Jesús Gonzalo (Aerospace Engineering Area of the University of León), Mr. Carlos Bernabéu (CEO of Arborea Intellbird), Mr. Víctor Montero (Business & Operations Director of B2Space), Mr. Óscar González Espadín  (Head of the Center for Special Environmental Tests of INTA), Mr. Raul de Saja (Manager of the Office for research and technology transfer of CTME) and Mr. Álvaro Villarino Rodríguez (R&D Project Manager at the innovation management departmentof CIDAUT Fundation). This discussion panel addressed issues related to Aerospace PERTE, environmental challenges facing the sector, training needs, R&D challenges, possibilities to generate synergies between the different stakeholders, etc.

Finally, the event was closed with the invitation to the attendees to participate in the next workshops and events organized under the training and support Program for R&D Business Centr@Tec.

CIDAUT participates in the most relevant Hydrogen event in Spain: EHEC 2022

Last May 18th, 19th and 20th, the most relevant European Hydrogen Conference took place in the Duques de Pastrana Complex, in Madrid: European Hydrogen Energy Conference (EHEC 2022)

The European Hydrogen Conference EHEC 2022 brought together more than 1,100 visitors from 40 countries who, for three days, shared and contributed knowledge, technological advances and presented new projects and research related to hydrogen technologies. This edition of EHEC 2022 gathered renowned professionals and major companies in four plenary sessions, 36 parallel sessions and 70 poster sessions. Institutional representatives such as the President of the European Commission, Ursula Von Der Leyen, and the Third Vice-President of the Spanish Government and Minister for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera, also took part in the Congress. Teresa Ribera stressed that the national target for 2030 is aligned with the European Union’s strategy and welcomed the approval of the Repower EU package of measures. The President of the Commission, Ursula Von Der Leyen, stressed the need to accelerate the consolidation of the hydrogen economy. She insisted on the need to make progress in the energy transition by cooperating with industry and giving it the necessary visibility. In this respect, she underlined Spain’s fundamental role in the sector, highlighting that 20% of all new green hydrogen projects announced in the world were in Spain.

On this occasion, several members of CIDAUT participated in the different events organised. Miguel Castaños presented CIDAUT’s advances on “Multizone thermodynamic model to design piston compressors for hydrogen at high pressures” and Elena Castilla presented on “Analysis of the integration of bioethanol production plants with bioethanol steam reforming processes to produce hydrogen”. CIDAUT also contributed with a poster by Marcos Sánchez where he illustrated on “Air temperature effect in steady state regime ammonia combustion by diffusion”. Finally, Jose Ignacio Dominguez and Henar Olmedo participated in the Side Event organised by the Spanish Hydrogen Technology Platform.

The organisers of EHEC 2022 say goodbye until the next edition, which is expected to be held in Bilbao in 2024, where CIDAUT will once again be presenting its advances and developments. 

CIDAUT is working on the development of a digital twin to fight against COVID-19 pandemic

In the midst of the seventh wave of COVID-19, intelligence technologies such as big data, Internet of Things (IoT) and deep learning have become more relevant. This pandemic, as the most important of our century, has shown that it is possible to fight against the spread of disease with the use of technology. By means of the preceding tools, we are now able to process massive and unstructured data and identify patterns and significant changes that are critical to attack the disease. Aware of this and at the forefront of technology, Cidaut is working on the development of a Digital Twin (DT) to fight against whatever infectious disease. The innovation of this work lies in transferring the epidemic prevention and control situation in the real space to the virtual space.

Taking the above into account, the process has started by defining a number of blueprints (strategies to mitigate the pandemic) in order to establish how the DT will control the situation.  This has been done with the help of several technological companies from different European countries. In total, 16 strategies have been defined and the work is now underway on how to integrate them into the DT.

Part of the work done to date can be seen in the image attached, which would not have been possible without European Union funding within the framework of Green Deal and the project PROBONO (GA#101037075).

CIDAUT participates in the XIV National Congress of Composite Materials – MATCOMP2021

Researchers of the area of Material, Products, Process from the CIDAUT Foundation, attended the XIV National Congress of Composite Materials – MATCOMP2021, celebrated in Seville from June 21st to 23rd. This congress, promoted by the Spanish Association of Composite Materials (AEMAC), is the most important event for the scientific, academic and business community around composite and high-performance materials in Spain. In this occasion, the congress was organized by the Elasticity and Strength of Materials Group of the University of Seville to commemorate 25 years of MATCOMPs congresses, which began in Seville in 1995.

In this edition of MATCOMP, the role of industry in the development of composite materials has been highlighted. Thus, in addition to multiple oral presentations and posters, two of the three plenary conferences were oriented to industrial problems and the Congress closed with an industrial round table in which industrial representatives from the most relevant sectors in the field of composite materials discussed the future of the sector and the technical challenges in which the university and the technology centers can be an indispensable agent as a generator of knowledge and an asset for technology transfer. This emphasis was complemented by a significant participation of companies through stands, and with a visit to the Final Assembly Line of the A400M on the closing day of the Congress.

During this Congress, the researchers of CIDAUT Foundation presented their investigations in relation to composite materials. In the thematic area of ​​”Sustainability and Recycling”, two contributions developed in the OSIRIS Project (CER-20211009) were presented:  a lecture entitled “RECYCLING OF REINFORCED THERMOPLASTIC COMPOSITE LAMINATE WASTE INTO HIGH PERFORMANCE MATERIALS” presented by Dr. María Asensio-Valentin and a poster entitled “REVALUATION OF PLASTIC WASTES COMPOSED BY PEI REINFORCED WITH GLASS FIBERS FROM THE AERONAUTICAL SECTOR” presented by Dr. Mercedes Santiago-Calvo. Moreover, the researcher Mattia Mazzeschi presented a poster entitled “ELECTROMAGNETIC-BASED STRUCTURAL HEALTH MONITORING APPROACH FOR THERMOPLASTIC WELDED JOINTS: EXPERIMENTAL AND NUMERICAL ANALYSIS”, which was awarded the prize for the Best poster of the congress.

Besides this, CIDAUT Foundation was present at the stand of the OSIRIS Network (CER-20211009), together with GAIKER Foundation (coordinator of the Osiris Project), Research Association of Plastic Materials and Related (AIMPLAS) and Research Association of the Textile Industry (AITEX). The OSIRIS Network establishes an alliance between these four Technology Centers of Excellence “Cervera” and a national and international benchmark to strengthen the capabilities of R & D in recycling and recovery technologies to improve the circular economy of composites and complex plastic materials with high added value.  Attendees were able to visit our stand and learn about the Network’s lines of work and its latest advances in R&D.

Cidaut’s occupants monitoring solutions

It seems obvious that driving automation needs new capabilities from the vehicle, lots of sensors have to be integrated to understand what is happening around, short and long range communication systems have to be developed to understand what is happening a little bit further, but, what about the occupants and their safety?

In the frame of Integra project, Cidaut is taking care of the occupants and their safety by modifying the design of the vehicle interior in accordance to the new needs. The first step is to know what is happing inside, with a webcam the occupants are recorded and thanks to the artificial intelligence the information is immediately processed to get relevant information. The functionalities developed by now include, the recognition of the occupant, the counting of flickers and yawns along time, the inclination of the head, the direction of the glance and the position and distance of the body. By processing all this information it is possible to know the alertness level of the driver and the position of all the occupants.

The alertness level is relevant for both standard and automated driving. In the case of the standard driving, the system can detect drowsiness, distraction or illness and alert the driver and/or the rest of the users of the road of this circumstance. In the case of the automated driving, mainly at level 3, it will be possible to alternate the responsibility of the driving between the vehicle and the driver. When the vehicle needs to take over the driving responsibility to the human, it has to be sure that the driver is ready to assume the control of the vehicle, thanks to the application developed it is easy to make this transition in a safety way.

The position of the occupants is also critical for their safety. The high automated levels of driving, mainly 3, 4 and 5, will allow the occupants to take positions inside the vehicle different from standardized ones. In these positions the usual restrain systems are unable to protect the occupants in a proper way. Attending to this, it is necessary to develop new restrain systems  suitable for the driving scenarios linked to the automated position and it is also necessary to monitor the occupants position in order to activate the new restrains systems in the most suitable manner attending to the kind of collision, the biometric characteristics of the occupant, and the position.

The work driving to these results is been performed in INTEGRA project, funded by and CDTI through Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación in the frame of the funding for Excellence in Research Centers “Cervera”. CER – 2021 1031.

Cidaut presents research and development projects’ results at SAHE

In the frame of SAHE, Hybrid and Electric Automotive Show, celebrated in Valladolid from the 22nd to the 24th of April, Cidaut has presented its last innovations related to sustainable mobility and intelligent transport.

At Cidaut’s booth, it was possible to see and touch two of the prototypes development in the last research and development projects carried out by the technological center. The first one was a crash test prototype that had been tested according to Regulation 94 homologation, in the frontal part of the vehicle the consequences of the crash were still visible. The rest of the vehicle has been repaired in order to shortly make an additional lateral pole crash test. Inside the vehicle, in the driving position, a crash test dummy was seated in order to make this testing tool familiar to the visitors. Most of the youngest assistants to the show were surprised and happy to see and touch the dummy while very few were surprised or scared.

The second prototype was a functional extra-light and safe urban electric vehicle. The interior of this prototype was monitored with a simple webcam and thanks to the application of artificial vision solutions, the vehicle was able to determine the position of the occupants, the direction of their glance, the number of flickers and yawns, and the alertness level of the driver. This solution will be applied to avoid unattended driving in automated driving scenarios, but also in standard driving conditions. The vehicle was open for the visitors to come in and test the performance of the monitoring systems. Again the youngest visitors were the ones who enjoyed the most the technological advances. Great to know the interest of youngest attendants in innovative solutions.

BIONANOPOLYS Project – Accelerating the introduction of biobased nano-enabled materials into the market

The Bionanopolys project (https://www.bionanopolys.eu/) continues to progress towards the objective of creating a network of pilot plants dedicated to the production of nanocomposites for sectors such as automotive, packaging and textile.

The consortium of Bionanopolys met for the 2nd Executive board meeting, hosted by project coordinator, at 22nd/ 23rd March 2022. The aim of the meeting was to share the successful updates of the different WPs through the Tasks leaders within each WPs.

On the other hand, Bionanopolys network extends across Europe and intends to build up a strong community on the development of safe nano-enabled bio-based materials. From March to June 2022, the national Bionanopolys stakeholder events take place.

To analyse how companies can benefit from the development of these materials and the implementation of the other services of the project, Spanish workshop was organised on 29 March. In this event, it was shown the network of pilot plants that CIDAUT makes available to the project and to the further Open Innovation Test Bed.

Recycled fire-resistant materials in the CREATOR project

The high volumes of plastic waste – for example from construction and demolition, aeronautics and electronics – pose a huge economic and environmental challenge. Although the best option would be to recycle and reuse, the cost of collecting, sorting and purifying these materials is often too high, so they are disposed of by burning, landfill or by “downcycling“, i.e. reuse in low-value products.

A specific problem is that many plastic materials contain hazardous flame retardants, such as bromine. These flame retardants were used in countless products from the 1970s onwards, but have since been banned across the EU because they can remain in the environment for years, accumulating to toxic levels.

Since 2019, the partners in CREATOR are developing a new purification process for waste material, using so-called continuous extraction technologies (supercritical CO2 and eutectic solvents in twin-screw extruders). CREATOR covers the whole value chain, starting with the collecting of thermoplastic waste streams from construction and waste electrical and electronic equipment.

The project implements ways to collect secondary raw materials, identify the presence of hazardous flame retardants, remove these contaminants from the materials and finally reuse the materials in similar applications to its original markets and also in other applications. This will convert waste into valuable raw materials, generating benefits for waste collection and sorting companies and recyclers, and reducing the amount of plastic waste in the environment.

In this process CIDAUT is working on the analysis of the improvement of the fire resistance of recycled plastic material by using environmentally friendly flame retardant additives.

If you would like more information about the project, please visit https://creatorproject.eu/

After the COVID impasse, numerous hydrogen events are being organised with the participation of CIDAUT

It seems that the desire to share experiences and knowledge about hydrogen has not diminished during this time. After the break caused by the pandemic, events related to hydrogen are stronger than ever and occupy a relevant place. In this sense, CIDAUT has had the opportunity to attend several of those that have already taken place and those that are coming soon.

The Extraordinary General Assembly of the Spanish Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Platform (PTE HPC) was held on 29th April, in which CIDAUT was present. The aim of this Assembly was to ratify a series of changes in the focus and orientation of the Platform with a view to the new Call for Technology Platforms 2023-2024 and to inform the attending members, through the participation of three public bodies, about the open or upcoming calls of interest for the hydrogen sector.

Experts from more than 40 companies analysed the levers of renewable hydrogen on 30 March in Gasnam. José Ignacio Domínguez attended this session representing CIDAUT and all of attendees agreed that hydrogen can contribute to Spain reaching its climate objectives, although it will be necessary to break down some barriers. They talked about increasing the intensity of the funding included in the national calls for proposals and removing some obstacles, such as, for example, receiving funding against final certification. The need to categorise the project as R&D&I by a certifier, to extend the object of the subsidy to network injection projects and to blending in combustion engines was also mentioned. The need to develop a regulatory framework that allows renewable hydrogen to be treated as a fuel of general interest and not just as a mere chemical product was discussed. Another of the barriers discussed was that the injection of hydrogen into the grid is a necessary lever, and therefore the implementation of real experiences to validate the technology should be promoted. Among other barriers, the urgency of the implementation of the Guarantees of Origin mechanism for renewable gases was also mentioned.

Last 4th of May a Practical Workshop on the PERTE on Energy, Renewable Hydrogen and Storage (PERTE ERHA) took place in CIDAUT. In this workshop, representatives of the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO) through IDAE (Santiago González Herráiz) and CIUDEN (Miguel Angel Delgado) informed about the recent PERTE ERHA call. On behalf of CIDAUT, Jose Ignacio Dominguez made a presentation about the Future of H2 technologies and CIDAUT’s developments and Alvaro Villarino presented the Centratec3 Programme. The event was held both in person and online and was followed by more than 30 regional entities, which indicates the interest in this topic. 

Last but not least, the European Hydrogen Energy Conference (EHEC 2022) will be held in Madrid on 18, 19 and 20 May. This conference is the European conference of reference in the field of hydrogen energy. EHEC was identified in Spain’s 2020 Hydrogen Roadmap as one of the measures to position Spain as a benchmark for these technologies in Europe. EHEC provides an excellent framework for upgrading hydrogen energy technologies. It will bring together the latest advances in research and business related to hydrogen.

On this edition, CIDAUT will participate with two oral presentations and a poster. Additionally, CIDAUT will be part of the Side Event organised by the Spanish Hydrogen Technology Platform, which will be attended by Jose Ignacio Dominguez. Miguel Castaños will speak on “Multi-zone thermodynamic model for the design of piston compressors for hydrogen at high pressures” and Elena Castilla will present on “Analysis of the integration of bioethanol production plants with bioethanol steam reforming processes to produce hydrogen”. The poster by Marcos Sánchez will deal with “Effect of air temperature on steady-state ammonia combustion by diffusion”.

CIDAUT participates in the Zeppelin green hydrogen project

CIDAUT is one of the research entities participating in the Zeppelin industrial research project, which aims to develop efficient and circular technological solutions for the production and storage of green hydrogen. The project aims to use innovation to reduce the current costs of renewable fuel production.

Led by the company Aqualia, Zeppelin has the participation of other actors in the hydrogen sector such as Redexis, Naturgy, Norvento, Perseo, Reganosa, Técnicas Reunidas and Repsol.

The general objectives of the project are to research new green hydrogen production technologies that are alternatives to electrolysis and that promote the circular economy through the recovery of waste and by-products from different sectors (agri-food, textiles, WWTPs, refineries, etc.).

Currently, 96% of the hydrogen produced in the world comes from fossil fuels and only 1% from renewable sources. Spain’s Hydrogen Roadmap calls for 25% of the hydrogen consumed by industry to be renewable by 2030, which will begin to power our trains, planes and vehicles. The Zeppelin project will contribute to achieving these Roadmap targets.

New materials and carriers for storing green hydrogen and modelling tools for the different technologies developed will also be evaluated. All of this, aligned with the objective of reducing the energy, economic and environmental costs associated with current hydrogen production and promoting safe, efficient and clean energy.

Within Activity 4: Research into H2 storage processes, led by Redexis, CIDAUT will collaborate in the research into alternative storage processes for green hydrogen in the form of ammonia. A comparative study with other forms of H2 storage will be carried out and a process for H2 storage in form of ammonia adapted to production and use needs will be dimensioned.

Zeppelin is funded by the Centre for Technological and Industrial Development (CDTI), through the CDTI Missions programme, aimed at financing large strategic business R&D initiatives that propose solutions to cross-cutting and strategic challenges for Spanish society and with the support of the Ministry of Science and Innovation. It has a budget of more than 7 million euros and the research will last until the end of 2024.The budget granted is financed by the European Union through the Next Generation Fund.