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CYPRUS: UCy Foss centre secures funding for Balkan-Med PV project

09 October, 2017
FOSS Research Centre for Sustainable Energy of the University of Cyprus as secured funding for a photovoltaic energy project from the Balkan-Mediterranean 2014-2020 programme, a cooperation that brings together researchers from three EU member states (Bulgaria, Cyprus and Greece) and two candidate countries, Albania and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

The project, “Enhancing storage integration in buildings with Photovoltaics (PV-Estia)” is coordinated by the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and with partners the Technological Research Centre of Western Macedonia, University of Cyprus, Electricity Authority of Cyprus, Energy Agency of Plovdiv, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technologies Of Ss. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Ministry of Environment and Energy/ Directorate for Renewables and Electricity.
The total project funding is EUR 1,270,332 and the University of Cyprus has secured EUR 337,707.
The objective of the project is to enhance the penetration of PVs in the built environment, which is endangered due to their intermittent nature and the limitations they impose on the electrical distribution grids. By proposing an innovative management scheme for the hybrid PV and storage unit, the aim is to transform the buildings into a controllable energy sink/source, thus making them grid-friendly. The planned tools to be developed during the course of the project will empower stakeholders and engineers to adequately deal with this new type of system.
Also, the joint regulations and recommendations for the Balkan Med region will pave the way for new and improved policies that will facilitate the advancement of PV and storage in buildings, towards NZEB transformation. In fact, by introducing storage in buildings with PVs the self-consumption on site of PV energy increases, thus reducing the power losses associated with feeding the excess energy back to the grid. Naturally, this results in using the sustainable solar source at considerably higher efficiency. Moreover, the energy security of the region is increased, which is a major pylon of the Energy Union policy in the EU, as solar energy is in abundance in the region. An important contribution to climate change resilience in transition comes from the fact that the higher the penetration of controllable PV energy in the energy mix of a region, the lower the conventional power generation from fossil fuel can be.