Funded by the European Commission, the project aims to power public buildings, condominiums, residences and businesses in 20 communities with four pilot plants located in Italy, Cyprus, Egypt and Jordan. The project falls under the ENPI CBC Med programme, which stands for the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument Cross-Border Cooperation in the Mediterranean. The project is promoted by the Arca Consortium, a business incubator and technology transfer hub for the University of Palermo, along with twelve institutional and scientific partners in Italy, Greece, France, Jordan, Egypt and Cyprus. The heart of the project is the use of solar energy to provide not only electricity but also to use in other applications, like heating, air-conditioning, and making drinking water. Solar energy will also be used to manage canteen kitchens, sterilization in hospitals or to run laundry facilities.
"Four pilot plants in Italy, Cyprus, Egypt and Jordan are planned. Thousands of professionals and technicians will be involved, 20 local communities, for a total of 20,000 final users who can try out the advantages of integrated types of concentrated solar systems," explained Umberto La Commare, president of the Arca Consortium. The four pilot units will be installed and optimized to serve as models for creating small units on public buildings.
The results of the project will be available in 36 months.
The Palermo conference continues today. Participants include the Italian renewable energy and technology agency ENEA, the Sicilian regional government, the Jordanian Energy Ministry, the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce, the University of Athens, and the French Commission for Alternative Energies. (ANSAmed).