Madrid, 23rd November 2017 – The workshop on “Innovating grid technologies for sustainable energy”, held on 22nd November in Madrid, gave an overview of the future of the European power grid. The workshop was hosted by Red Electrica de España and Iberdrola in the framework of BEST PATHS, the largest FP7 research project ever financed by the European Commission in the energy sector. Its consortium partners include transmission grid operators, energy players, research centres and academia.
While the importance of renewables is growing and more countries are increasingly relying on them, the BEST PATHS project is addressing the next steps necessary for the consequential grid evolution. The project focuses on integrating offshore wind power into the electricity grid, designing new materials and technologies for ultra high capacity cables, as well as upgrading and refurbishing existing electricity transmission lines: Alternate Current, Direct Current applications and High Voltage Direct Current transmission (HVDC).
As the project coordinator, Vicente Gonzalez Lopez, from Red Eléctrica de España stated during the workshop, “The whole European power sector is under great pressure to keep its traditional technological leadership and system competitiveness. Innovation is one of the key answers to the challenge of the energy transition and to face the competition from outside the European Union. But synergy among Member States and companies is critical. The individual demonstrations composing the Best Paths project are running in parallel, and show a great deal of cooperation among different - in some cases competing - players”.
During the workshop, the leaders of the five project demos delivered detailed presentations illustrating the developments achieved in the last year of work, while a panel discussion with major international experts animated a lively audience of nearly eighty attendees.
Many of the results presented are approaching their final stage, as the project will come to an end in September 2018. As the public debate about energy gains momentum, the project is developing tests, methodologies, technologies and prototypes to ensure a powerful and flexible grid.
The main results include in particular:
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