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I S S U E S E V E N

H O R I Z O N 2 0 2 0 P R O J E C T S : P O R TA L

www.horizon2020projects.com

178

S O C I E TA L C H A L L E N G E S : E N E R G Y

Materials as Key Enabling Technologies

Key Enabling Technologies (KETs), such as nanotechnology-based or

advanced materials, offer interesting opportunities in our energy

efficiency domain which have been further developed and tested

through PPP EeB projects: aerogel-based composite nanomaterials for

cost-effective building superinsulation systems, nanotech improved

coatings, nanostructured encapsulation of air for high performance

insulation, new advanced insulation phase change materials, and

biocomposite materials with low cost, lightweight, durability and high

performance sustainability properties.

Further, this includes the integration of all-waste materials. Innovations

targeting significant technological advancements are also proposed for

future innovation developments: these include optimisation for vacuum-

based systems, quadruple-glazed windows and active films. Such

opportunities provide optimised visual, thermal, acoustic, mechanic,

comfort, control, weight, and manufacturing process characteristics.

Healthy buildings

Our buildings are environments where people spend a lot of hours every

day. The quality of these environments from a health approach is therefore

imperative. Airtight buildings may affect the air quality if not sufficiently well

designed. This is why several PPP EeB projects are focused on health-related

issues. Monitoring systems capable of detecting indoor environment comfort

and health parameters, air quality sensors,

antimicrobial and anti-allergic solutions and

strategies, and innovative bio and eco-innovative

materials and components, such as forest-based

biocomposites for façade and interior partitions

or air-purifying aerogel granulates, are some

concrete examples under development and even

approaching commercialisation.

Generation and storage of energy

At the level of the energy generation systems

for buildings and districts, innovations are also

taking place to make them more energy

efficient and climate friendly. For example, new

micro-combined heat and power network

technologies have been optimised based on the

dynamic exchange between buildings,

distribution systems and the customer; multi-

energy storage systems have been integrated

into new or existing buildings; seasonal thermal

energy storage systems have been effectively

integrated into existing buildings; gas

absorption heat pump solutions are being

developed for existing residential buildings;

energy efficient heat exchangers and air

conditioning systems implement new

nanotechnology approaches; and hydrogen

technologies have been tested as an energy

supply in the case of an energy shortage from

renewables, thus compensating for their

intermittent nature.

Demonstrators and knowledge

dissemination

While some of these various energy efficient

technologies are still at the level of testing or

demonstration in laboratory conditions, many

others have been, or are today, very close to

commercial exploitation. Several PPP EeB

projects have been dedicated to developing

demonstrators in real conditions, and

dissemination of these solutions ready for the

market is now taking place, both in the new and

retrofit sectors. These projects generally include

a monitoring component under normal

operational requirements for the validation

phase. In parallel, they deploy ambitious

dissemination plans using multiple channels,

including local, national and European

stakeholders who are kept up-to-date on the

progress and outcomes of the demonstrators.

Incentives may also be implemented to

increase the involvement of inhabitants,

highlighting how they can benefit from lower

energy costs and improved environments. Live

© PublicDomainPictures

Sustainable buildings

are key to a

sustainable future