IERC: collaborative research for sustainability
The MiniStor project includes 18 research centers, universities, companies, non-profit organizations and local authorities across Europe. Among them, the International Energy Research Centre (IERC) plays the role of coordinator for the project. In this article, we introduce you to its mission, goals and activities, as well as their tasks within MiniStor.
The International Energy Research Centre (IERC) conducts collaborative research in the field of integrated sustainable energy systems. It is based in Cork, Ireland, and is hosted at Tyndall National Institute, the leading research centre in Ireland.
As a collaborative research centre, the IERC delivers world leading investigation to meet global societal needs for secure, affordable and sustainable energy services. It enables partners to develop new products and services that will ensure real energy demand reductions across society. The centre provides an energy research environment that combines business innovation with research excellence for energy demand side efficiency and systems integration challenges.
The IERC has built multidisciplinary team of more than 20 researchers capable of working with industry to define business needs in terms of research outcomes, and develop fully tailored research projects designed for greatest impact.
It has implemented a new and unique Collaboration and Intellectual Property Agreement to reward deep engagement of industry in collaborative projects. The role of the IERC is one of translating the needs of both business and policymakers into solution oriented research that can deliver the required outcomes to all stakeholders.
A single energy model for thermal and electrical storage
Within MiniStor, the IERC is the coordinating partner. It participates in almost all the Work Packages either as partner or as Work Package leader (WP6: Demonstration and Evaluation).
One of the highlights of their contribution is the development of a simulation module to represent the system in whole-building energy modelling packages. The novelty of this module is the integration as a single element of separate representations of the electrical and thermal storage. This will allow planners and designers to consider, using a single channel for input, the thermal and electrical energy benefits and savings of the system before it is implemented, resulting in an increased uptake.
The responsible persons from IERC taking part in the project are Dr Carlos Ochoa and Dr Maria Lopez, who also chair the General Assembly and Steering Committee, respectively.