CIDAUT, together with the partners of Salient Project, is tackling the new challenges of the forthcoming connected and automated vehicles’ crashworthiness. The new skills of the connected and automated vehicles will allow to significantly reduce the number of accidents and fatalities in our roads, but the zero crashes scenario is still far away. In the meanwhile, the communication among vehicles, V2V technology, will be a useful tool to have some pieces of important information some milliseconds in advance of the crash event.
This information will allow the absorption elements of the vehicle to give an active response to the impact they are about to suffer. But to obtain this active response, a deep research and development work is needed in order to select the right material and the optimum geometry for each of the components that shape the structure of the vehicle.
At the same time, the project aims to find a sustainable solution, and attending to this is looking for recyclable light materials, as composite, aluminum or the combination of both, taking into account the whole life cycle analysis of the components and looking for circular economy compliant solutions. In order to select the most suitable material a detailed characterization campaign of different grades of composite and aluminum is being performed to know their static, dynamic, cyclic, fatigue, thermal and impact properties, which will conduct to obtaining accurate material cards to be implemented in advances software tools that will allow to optimize the geometry of the different components involved in the passive safety behavior of the automated vehicles and also to use the right material in the right position.
The research leading to this results has received funding from Horizon Europe under Grant Agreement nº 101069600
One of the most important challenges that the building sector faces is the reduction of energy consumption throughout the entire life cycle, i.e. from the manufacture of building elements, through their useful life, to their demolition. So much so that the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) estimates that buildings consume approximately 40% of the world’s energy, 25% of the world’s water and 40% of the world’s resources; moreover, buildings are responsible for approximately 1/3 of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. In Europe alone, more than 220 million existing buildings – approximately 75 per cent of the building stock – are energy inefficient indeed, many of them rely on fossil fuels for heating and cooling.
In view of the construction sector is responsible for more than 35% of the EU’s total waste generation, one of the main promising measures to tackle the high CO2 emissions of this sector and move towards a more circular economy is to encourage the use of secondary materials.
Faced with this situation, the CIDAUT Foundation takes part in PROBONO project, a European project in which the implementation of the circular economy in this sector is essential. In this line, the CIDAUT Foundation is going to use recycled materials in insulation and structural applications to achieve more sustainable and efficient buildings. This will avoid the use of materials of fossil origin as well as introduce recyclable and lightweight materials.
One of the strategies for reducing the heating and cooling demands is to focus on improving the insulation properties of building envelopes, in addition to enhancing the efficiency of appliances or modifying citizen life styles. The first action plays a decisive role, as it can lead to significant improvements with a short payback period. This action is aligned with the European strategy of introducing more efficient and environmentally friendly materials. This is why the PROBONO project is working on the implementation of insulating as well as sustainable materials and processes.
A new General Assembly for the Bionanopolys (https://www.bionanopolys.eu/) was hosted by the project coordinator at 18th – 19th April 2023, in Valencia (Spain).
During this meeting, important milestones achieved so far within Bionanopolys project, were highlighted:
The official establishment of the Single Entry Point (SEP), as a new legal entity, was achieved on February ’23. SEP of the BIONANOPOLYS project has been formally constituted as international association. CIDAUT is part of this entity as founded partner together other four firms
On February ’23, the Bionanopolys Open Call was officially launched. Until 15th May, companies, universities or specialised research centre have submitted their applications via web (https://www.bionanopolys.eu/open-call/). Afterwards, an evaluation committee will score all the proposals received. From all the proposals received, a maximum of five projects will be selected, which will have free access to the BIONANOPOLYS pilot plants.
The relevance of the end user cases that are currently under development was also underlined. As a result of the upgrading and different bionanomaterials developed in BIONANOPOLYS pilot plants, eight industrial partners are currently able to bring to market 21 improved products.
Once the 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””.
The ESTELLA consortium held its First General Assembly on the 7th and 8th of February in León (Spain). The aim of this meeting was to review the current status of all the tasks carried out during the project and to present the next steps.
The main objective of the ESTELLA project is to increase the sustainability of thermosetting epoxy composites by acting on the whole value chain of the materials, starting from the design stage through the introduction of CAN bonds in both fossil- and bio-based matrices and fibres. Ultimately this will enable their recycling, while redefining all manufacturing and recycling processes involved, ensuring the maximal recovery rate of its components, and strengthening the environmental and economical dimensions of thermosetting composites value chain.
In this first phase of the project, two main tasks are being carried out: the development of raw materials and the investigation of microorganisms capable of degrading the developed composite. On the one hand, raw material developers are engaged in polymer design and functionalisation and fibres in order to be able to start manufacturing the tailor-made biocomposites in the coming year. On the other hand, microorganism researchers are evaluating the different species that appear in cultures made from commercial epoxy resins.
CIDAUT continues to advance in the development of thermoset composite materials with improved recyclability properties that can be used in applications that require high performance materials (construction, aeronautics and automotive) in the framework of the European project r-LightBioCom, which has just been launched.
r-LightBioCom’s main objective is to reduce environmental impact of the new lightweight HPC, not only during their production but also during their operational life and after achieving their final lifetime (inherent recyclability properties), while providing improved mechanical properties, weight reduction and new functionalities.
This project, funded by the European Commission, is part of the Horizon Europe programme, one of the most competitive and prestigious calls for proposals at European level, which exclusively promotes projects with great excellence. It has a budget of 4.2 million euros and is made up of 15 multidisciplinary partners.
The consortium is coordinated by the Textile and Cosmetics Research and Innovation Centre (Aitex) and Cidaut leads and coordinates two important tasks. The first is dedicated to the processing of the new materials developed to obtain composites using novel and environmentally friendly technologies. The second is the analysis of the life cycle of the materials and processes that will allow validation of their environmental viability.
The project has already held its kick-off meeting in Alicante (Spain) on 30th and 31st January.
For CIDAUT it is great news that a new European R&D project has been awarded in one of the most competitive and highest level calls for proposals, Horizon Europe. This consolidates us as an international benchmark in the field of recycling complex plastic materials, such as fibre-reinforced composites, as well as in the development of more sustainable solutions. This is a very important line of work at a time when administrations, companies and society are demanding plastic materials with a lower environmental impact.
Last 17th February 2023 Bionanopolys project consortium performed a Virtual Open Day, where partners explained how to develop, test or upscale bionanomaterials in this open innovation test bed environment.
Our Open innovation test-bed has a lot of services to offer! With our 14 technical services (pilot plants) you will get the unique opportunity to accelerate your development of biobased bionanomaterials (https://www.bionanopolys.eu/pilot-plants/). And with our additional transversal and non-technical business services, our team will help you to pave your way to the market.
Let’s join forces and develop innovative bionanomaterials! and we would like to explain how to develop, test or upscale bionanomaterials in this open innovation test bed environment.