The Catalonia Institute for Energy Research (IREC) has teamed up with the Catalan Energy Institute (ICAEN) for a new funding to create PRIMA, a platform for the integration of renewable energies and storage. This will secure a new demonstration platform to promote research and innovation in the energy sector in Catalonia, identified as a key strategy in the National Pact for the Energy Transition and the Climate Change Law. A 3M€ investment from the Government of Catalonia will support IREC and the Catalan industry to expand their research and technology development programmes in areas including energy storage, renewables and electric vehicle integration, hydrogen and low carbon fuel technologies, advanced materials and energy innovation.
PRIMA will be constructed near the IREC headquarters and will support the market implementation of cutting-edge research on the integration of renewable energy and storage in buildings and energy networks. PRIMA will test and validate these technologies in real environments. The platform will have a dual orientation with applied research and technological development as well as innovation and a clear market orientation. It will foster new industries by closing the gap between scientific research and its commercial exploitation. PRIMA’s unique and growing network of leading universities and companies – from international corporations to innovative SMEs – will work together to scale-up technologies, develop supply chains and identify routes to market.
PRIMA responds to a national need to meet the strategic objectives set by public institutions by setting a new model to implement the energy transition. This transition is a necessary key player in the economic recovery to overcome the current COVID-19 crisis. Furthermore, PRIMA will support research and technological collaboration in key sectors of the Catalan economy, including life science, advanced engineering and materials, low carbon energy, ICT and the digital economy.
The collaborative ecosystem of IREC positions the institute as a key agent for hosting and managing PRIMA, and will encourage the shared use of the infrastructure while maximizing the economic, technological and social return on investment. PRIMA will act as a hub for academics, industry, technology transfer and business development professionals, creating links with allied programmes in energy, materials and network development that will benefit of the Barcelona region, Catalonia and Europe well beyond this extension.