Pan European Networks - Horizon 2020 - page 141

partners from both the public and private sectors. Our
participation in the following projects is especially
worth highlighting:
n
The development of sustainable systems of biogas production
and use in Spain (PROBIOGAS), a singular strategic project
funded by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science
involving 13 R&D and innovation bodies and 16 SMEs. This
research studied the potential of the biodegradable waste
produced in Spain, its geographical distribution, the feasibility
of developing biogas plants employing co-digestion of waste,
and the potential uses of biogas;
n
Energy recovery and utilisation of methane in cattle slurry co-
digestion systems to reduce greenhouse gases, led by the GIA
with the participation of a private company from the energy
sector (Abengoa Group) and a publicly owned enterprise from
the waste management sector (COGERSA). This project was
funded by the Spanish Ministry of the Environment and
Maritime and Rural Affairs. The project’s main goal was to
reduce the greenhouse effect of gases produced by bovine
cattle slurry via co-digestion with food waste, sewage sludge
and glycerin from biodiesel plants in order to enhance waste
biodegradability and energy efficiency. The application of
ultrasound as a pre-treatment to digestion was also studied;
n
Marketable sludge derivatives from sustainable processing of
wastewater in a highly integrated treatment plant (END-O-
SLUDG), funded by the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme,
with the participation of 14 partners from industry, academia
and government bodies from five European countries. This
project aimed to develop energy efficient techniques for
reducing sludge production and novel treatment processes to
increase biogas yield and to obtain marketable, high-quality
sludge products; and
n
Recovery of CO
2
from the gaseous emissions of waste
incinerators and their use in the production of microalgae
(ReCO2very), with the participation of six partners from
industry and public institutions, funded by the Spanish Ministry
of Economy and Competitiveness (Society’s Challenges-
Collaborative Projects). This is a strategic R&D and innovation
project conceived to find an innovative and integrated solution
to reduce the emissions of CO
2
from waste incineration by
recovering CO
2
via the cultivation of microalgae to produce
biofuels and other forms of energy. It also aims to address the
challenge that European waste treatment plants will face in the
coming years in the transition towards a greener and more
circular economy.
Recent research
A more recent line of research is related to air particulate matter
levels and their relationship to emission sources. Certain chemical
species are generally accepted as tracers for road traffic,
combustion and different industries. The GIA is currently studying
the content in heavy metals, total carbon (organic and elemental
carbon), soluble ions, particle size distribution and morphology of
particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5). Air mass origins can be
classified by applying back trajectory analysis. This will allow us to
identify pollutant sources and propose actions to optimise
environmental management plans.
The GIA’s research facilities are located at the Polytechnic
Engineering School on Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo. This
campus forms part of what is known as Gijón’s ‘Mile of
Knowledge’, which is also home to the Laboral City of Culture
complex and Gijón Science and Technology Park, which is owned
and managed by Gijón City Council. The majority of the region’s
leading R&D and innovation companies have their headquarters
or facilities in this park, thus facilitating collaboration between
researchers, companies and institutions.
Professor Elena Marañón Maison
Chair in EnvironmentalTechnology
University of Oviedo
33203 Gijón, Spain
tel :
+34 985 182 027
H O R I Z O N 2 0 2 0 P R O J E C T S : P O R TA L
I S S U E S I X
141
P R O F I L E
S O C I E TA L C H A L L E N G E S : E N E R G Y
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