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National Energy Research Network

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NERN Newsletter


Welcome to the National Energy Research Network newsletter, which is published weekly and aims to provide relevant information to energy researchers. Extra content is always welcome - if you would like something added please contact the editor, Dr Mike Weston. You can view previous NERN newsletters in the archive.

Newsletter 290 - 25/07/14


UKERC Twitter feed

Interesting developments

Reports

Jobs and opportunities

Funding

Events and Conferences

NERN blog




UKERC Twitter feed

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Interesting developments

Report for Sciencewise and the Committee on Climate Change: Lessons learned from the CCC public dialogue project

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 14:52 BST - (9 Reads)

In respect to the Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) pledge to ‘involving the public in the exercise of its functions’ – a public dialogue project on the trajectories for carbon emission reductions was launched in 2013. The aim of the project was to gauge public understanding of the global climate change challenge and acceptability of the risk compared with the costs of global action.

The dialogue evaluation report ‘Evaluating the Trajectories for Carbon Emission Reductions public dialogue project’ provides not only invaluable insights into how the project met its key objectives, but also shares key lessons for policy makers on the dialogue process as a whole.

For more information please go here.

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£10 million Driverless Cars Challenge competition

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 14:02 BST - (13 Reads)

In February this year, the Department for Transport in conjunction with the Department for Business Innovation & Skills and the Transport Systems Catapult ran a workshop in London that discussed the design of a ‘driverless cars challenge’.

At this London event, over 80 stakeholders from sectors including local authorities, the insurance industry and the research community attended as well as representatives from The Treasury, Automotive Council and Technology Strategy Board. The results from the workshop were to be analysed by the Department for Transport and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, working in partnership with the Technology Strategy Board, who are now going to invest up to £10m in collaborative R&D projects to research further how driverless cars can be integrated into everyday life in the UK.

A briefing event, combining networking and consortia-building activities, is expected to be held in London on 30th July.  We expect the Technology Strategy Board to provide a live feed of this event if you can’t make it to London in person.  This event will provide potential applicants and interested parties with the background and scope of the competition, along with competition guidelines for consortia, and an opportunity to network.

For more information please go here.

 

 

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Energy Catalyst first deadlines fast approaching

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 13:56 BST - (8 Reads)

The Energy Catalyst, established by the Technology Strategy Board, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) is open for business. The Catalyst will accelerate innovation in the energy sector, from concept to pre-commercial readiness, by providing investment and support at the time, in the way and at the scale innovators need it. Funding of up to £25m is available for the first round, which opened in May 2014 to receive applications.

The Energy Catalyst is open to innovative businesses of any size and from any sector and research organisations who can address all elements of the energy ‘trilemma’ of:

  • reducing emissions
  • improving security of supply
  • reducing cost

These challenges are creating major global market opportunities, for which the UK can develop and grow innovative businesses to deliver world-leading solutions.

Three categories of grant are available (for full details see the links below for scope, grant sizes and timescales)

  • Early-stage award: Technical feasibility - key dates register by 29 October 2014, submit full application by noon, 5th November 2014
  • Mid-stage awards: Technology Development - key dates register by 27 August 2014, submit EOI application by noon, 3rd September 2014 (1st stage)
  • Late-stage awards: Pre-commercial technology validation - key dates register by 27 August 2014, submit EOI application by noon, 3rd September 2014 (1st stage)

A briefing event was held on 20th May in London which you can view online to understand more about the Catalyst, its funding, application process and scope. Brokering events have also been held around the country in Bristol, Glasgow, Birmingham and Belfast. 

For more information please go here.

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Call for Papers for Advances in Photovoltaics Meeting, 16 September 2014, London

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Tue 25 August 2015 13:49 BST - (10 Reads)

This one day meeting provides a forum to help assess the current state of the art. It brings together a list of distinguished invited speakers whose expertise covers the range of photovoltaic technologies. It is organised by the Institute of Physics Ion and Plasma Surface Interactions Group and co-sponsored by the IOP Energy, Thin Films and Surfaces, Printing and Graphics Science and Vacuum Groups and the EPSRC Supergen SuperSolar Hub.

A strong programme of speakers has been assembled -

  • Computational identification of materials for solar energy conversion, David Ginley, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, USA
  • Perovskite solar cells, Henry Snaith, University of Oxford, UK
  • Thin film CdTe photovoltaics: past, present and future, Chris Ferekides (University of South Florida, USA)
  • Current global status of multijunction solar cells for CPV and space applications, Andy Johnson, IQE plc, UK
  • BIPV a low cost reality?, Kevin Bygate, SPECIFIC IKC, National Innovation Centre, UK

At present the organisers have further 10 minute oral contributions and a limited number of poster presentations available. If you are interested please send a title, by Friday 15 August 2014, to Sharon Henson, EPSRC SuperSolar Hub co-ordinator.

 

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NERC support for the Oil and Gas Sector

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 12:26 BST - (9 Reads)

If you are involved in the Oil and Gas Sector and would you like to know what academic skills and capabilities are available to you in the UK then the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), in collaboration with the Knowledge Transfer Network, would like to invite you to a series of events throughout 2014 to investigate solutions to the top challenges facing the sector in the UK.

To find out more and to register for these free events click on the links below

Unconventional Hydrocarbons - 24th September 2014, Manchester

Challenging Environments - 17th October, London

Extending the life of mature basins - 20th November, Aberdeen

Environmental Management - 3rd December, Cambridge

For more information please go here.

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OCEANERA-NET website now live

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 11:39 BST - (8 Reads)

OCEANERA-NET is the short name for the Ocean Energy European Research Area Network (ERA-Net). The project is funded by the European Union through Framework Programme 7.

The objective of OCEANERA-NET is to coordinate funding programmes between European countries and regions to support research and innovation in the ocean energy sector. Ocean energy includes the generation of renewable electricity from wave and tidal energy, salinity gradient and ocean thermal energy conversion.

Specifically OCEANERA-NET will work towards joint calls for collaborative research and innovation projects. The project started in December 2013 and will run for 4 years. Their target is to launch a pilot joint call by November 2014, and further calls in 2015 and 2016.

OCEANERA-NET is coordinated by Scottish Enterprise, the Regional Economic Development Agency for lowlands Scotland. The consortium comprises partners from the UK, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, France, Spain and Portugal. They are also open to opportunities for collaboration with other European countries or international partners.

Take advantage of this new funding opportunity and go to their website to find out more. Join the OCEANERA-NET mailing list to get early notice and information on the first call and future competitions.

For more information please go here.

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Open DECC Consultations

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 08:55 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 14:43 BST - (11 Reads)

Support for non-domestic electricity consumers on Shetland - Domestic and non-domestic consumers on Shetland are currently protected from the high costs of electricity supply resulting from the isolated nature of Shetland’s electricity infrastructure. DECC set out its position on domestic consumers in 2013 following a review of the Common Tariff Obligation. It concluded that domestic consumers in northern Scotland (including Shetland) should continue to be supported. DECC is now undertaking a public consultation to consider the best way of continuing support for non-domestic consumers on Shetland. DECC’s intervention would provide long-term regulatory certainty for non-domestic consumers on Shetland.

Cutting the cost of keeping warm: a new fuel poverty strategy for England - This consultation will help prepare for the first fuel poverty strategy in over a decade. The consultation seeks to explain how we will move from the broad principles the Government set out last year in the Framework for Future Action on Fuel Poverty to helping those that need it most, driving cost effective interventions and maintaining our regard for those most vulnerable to the effects of living in a cold home.

Private Rented Sector Energy Efficiency Regulations (Domestic/Non-domestic ) - The Energy Act 2011 places a duty on the Secretary of State to bring into force regulations to improve the energy efficiency of buildings in the domestic and non-domestic private rented sector in England and Wales. The domestic consultation focusses on the domestic private rented sector regulations which are as follows:

  • Tenant’s energy efficiency improvement regulations that will empower private domestic tenants to request consent for energy efficiency measures that may not unreasonably be refused by their landlord.
  • Minimum energy efficiency standard regulations that will require eligible properties in the sector to be improved to a specified minimum standard.

The non-domestic consultation focusses on the non-domestic private rented sector regulations that will require eligible properties in the sector to be improved to a specified minimum standard.

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Reports

This week's reports

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 14:35 BST - (9 Reads)
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Jobs and opportunities

Industry Network Manager, UK Energy Research Centre

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:05 BST - Expires At: Mon 25 August 2014 11:45 BST - (15 Reads)

Applications are invited for the position of Industry Network Manager in the London headquarters of the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC), hosted at Imperial College.  The person appointed will be responsible for delivering UKERC’s networking and engagement activities with industry stakeholder groups.

UKERC carries out world-class inter-disciplinary research into sustainable future energy systems. It is the focal point of UK energy research and the gateway between the UK and the international energy research communities. Our highly regarded research programme, now in its tenth year, reflects and informs UK policy development and research strategy.

To maximise the impact of this research UKERC has recently established stakeholder networks to provide a robust framework for communication and interaction between those actively involved in performing, utilising, or funding energy research. The Networks Managers are responsible for ensuring proactive engagement with key sectorial representatives and being the primary conduit between UKERC and its various stakeholder communities, both within the UK and Globally.

The successful applicants will be an excellent communicator with a first degree (or equivalent) and either a PhD (or equivalent) in a field directly relevant to energy or equivalent training giving a strong appreciation of science and technology issues.  Candidates with equivalent work experience will also be considered.

For more information please go here. The closing date for applications is the 25th August 2014.

 

 

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Academic Network Manager, UK Energy Research Centre

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:05 BST - Expires At: Tue 25 August 2015 11:26 BST - (19 Reads)

Applications are invited for the position of Academic Network Manager in the London headquarters of the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC), hosted at Imperial College.  The person appointed will be responsible for delivering UKERC’s networking and engagement activities with academic stakeholder groups.

UKERC carries out world-class inter-disciplinary research into sustainable future energy systems. It is the focal point of UK energy research and the gateway between the UK and the international energy research communities. Our highly regarded research programme, now in its tenth year, reflects and informs UK policy development and research strategy.

To maximise the impact of this research UKERC has recently established stakeholder networks to provide a robust framework for communication and interaction between those actively involved in performing, utilising, or funding energy research. The Networks Managers are responsible for ensuring proactive engagement with key sectorial representatives and being the primary conduit between UKERC and its various stakeholder communities, both within the UK and Globally.

The successful applicants will be an excellent communicator with a first degree (or equivalent) and either a PhD (or equivalent) in a field directly relevant to energy or equivalent training giving a strong appreciation of science and technology issues.  Candidates with equivalent work experience will also be considered.

For more information please go here. The closing date for applications is the 25th August 2014.

 

 

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Research Associate: Theoretical studies of energy related materials, University of Cambridge - Department of Chemistry

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 18 August 2014 11:55 BST - (12 Reads)

A post-doctoral research position in theory as applied to energy applications (for example, carbon capture, oxygen looping and batteries) is available to start work as soon possible in Prof. Clare Grey's research group in the Chemistry Department at Cambridge University.

The main responsibilities of the position involve the use of DFT-based theory to study advanced materials for chemical looping and oxygen production. The project is funded by the EPSRC and will involve a collaboration with the Engineering Departments at Cambridge (Drs. S. Scott and J. S. Dennis) and the School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials at Newcastle University (Prof. I Metcalfe). The aim of the project is to develop and evaluate materials theoretically that can be used to donate oxygen in various chemical looping processes (e.g. air separation).  The work will attempt to link the fundamental chemistry of the materials (working in collaboration with engineering groups) to their performance.

Candidates should be experienced in a range of theoretical methods including, but not limited to, DFT based calculations and MD simulations. Candidates may be expected to be involved in the supervision of undergraduate students and post-graduates and to liaise with different research-based consortia within Cambridge, Britain and Europe.  

A PhD in chemistry, physics, engineering or materials science is required.  Experience applying computational methodology to problems in either solid state chemistry, surfaces or energy related systems is required.  Some experience with running small unix-based clusters is desirable but not required.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 18th August 2014.

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Assistant Professorship in the Economics of Energy Markets, Technische Universität München, Germany

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Sun 31 August 2014 11:52 BST - (14 Reads)

The TUM School of Management invites applications for a Tenure Track Assistant Professorship in the Economics of Energy Markets. They are looking for an excellent junior scientist with a high potential for developing an internationally recognized research agenda in the field of Economics of Energy Markets. The successful candidate pursues research projects that contribute to the understanding and the further development of energy markets. An emphasis on the future of regulation in these markets will be appreciated.

Experience in interdisciplinary research is expected, as the successful candidate will collaborate closely with colleagues from the TUM School of Management as well as with researchers from TUM’s engineering and natural sciences.

Special assignments connected to the position encompass the integration of management and technology, the associated bridge-building activities within the university, the development of international collaboration in research and teaching, and the transfer of academic knowledge into practice. A proven ability to attract competitive national and international funding is welcome, though not required.

For more information please go here. The closing date for applications is 31st August 2014.

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Research Associate, Hydrogen Supply Chain Systems and Optimisation, University College London

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Sat 09 August 2014 11:16 BST - (11 Reads)

Professor Lazaros Papageorgiou (UCL Chemical Engineering) and Dr Paolo Agnolucci (UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources) are looking for a skilled postdoctoral researcher with ample experience in supply chain systems and optimisation methods, to work on a project to assess the potential value of hydrogen supply infrastructure as well as identify the optimum deployment of infrastructure across the UK, as part of a grant funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). The post is available for 21 months in the first instance from 1 November 2014 or as soon as possible thereafter.

The candidate should have a PhD degree in Engineering, with experience in process modelling and demonstrated skills in using hydrogen supply chain systems and/or optimisation methods.

If you have any queries regarding the application process, please contact Miss Agata Blaszczyk. If you have any queries about the vacancy, please contact Prof Lazaros Papageorgiou or Dr Paolo Agnolucci.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 9th August 2014.

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Research Associate (Java Web Application Developer - EnAlgae project), 2 Posts, Birmingham City University

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 04 August 2014 09:41 BST - (15 Reads)

Applications are sought for two Research Associates (Java Web Application Developers) to work on web-based semantic decision support systems in the bio-energy domain. Research Associates will work on the EnAlgae project , which brings together 19 partners and 14 observers across seven EU Member States, and aims to reduce CO2 emissions and dependency on unsustainable energy sources in North West Europe.

The Research Associates (Java Web Application Developers) will assist with the development of decision support tools in accordance with the project objectives. It is anticipated that the successful applicant will have good programming skills (including web applications) and be familiar with knowledge engineering tools and technologies. Knowledge of web application development (including Javascript, Java frameworks (e.g. Spring)) and experience of using semantic web technologies (e.g. SPARQL, Jena, Protégé, RDF) will be advantageous, as will practical experience of knowledge capture and modelling. GIS experience would also be advantageous. The positions are based in the Centre for Knowledge Based Engineering within the School of Engineering, Design and Manufacturing Systems.

A secondment from another University/research organisation may be possible subject to satisfactory negotiation with the relevant organisation.

The posts are co-financed by the EU through the INTERREG IVB North West Europe programme.

For an informal discussion about the position please contact Professor Craig Chapman, Associate Head for Research in the School of Engineering, Design and Manufacturing Systems.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 4th August 2014.

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Visit the jobs webpage for more opportunities and as ever if you know of any jobs, please let me know.

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Funding

ETI project to deliver an assessment on the impact of biomass pre-processing activities

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Fri 29 August 2014 13:12 BST - (11 Reads)

The Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) is launching a new project in its Bioenergy programme – Techno-economic assessment of Biomass pre-processing – and is seeking partners to deliver it.

ETI modelling suggests that any future UK energy system capable of delivering on its climate change targets, that is built without the use of bioenergy, would cost more than £50billion per year more by 2050. ETI’s own analysis and work by the Committee on Climate Change (2011), and work funded by the UK Research Councils (e.g. TSec-Biosys, Supergen  and the Rural Economy Land Use Programmes) have shown the UK could potentially utilise reasonable volumes of domestically grown biomass to help fuel the UK’s energy future. To achieve this and in order for bio-dedicated conversion technologies to be confidently designed and deployed, there is a need for greater knowledge of the variability in feedstock characteristics, and understanding of how these affect, on a system level, the overall costs and performance of  biomass value chains. A significant part of this, is the need to assess the system level value of biomass pre-processing activities.

The Techno-economic Assessment of Biomass Pre-processing project will provide an assessment of the economic and performance trade-offs associated with pre-processing options, and the value they may provide compared with more conventional technology improvement approaches.  The project will assess and compare two different bioenergy system approaches – one without any significant pre-processing steps between feedstock production and energy conversion process and one incorporating intermediate pre-processing activities.  These steps may include processes to densify biomass to aid transportation and storage; processes to improve biomass handling; and/or processes to modify the chemical composition of the raw biomass feedstocks.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 29th August 2014.

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ETI Bioenergy project examining characterising UK grown feedstocks

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Fri 15 August 2014 13:29 BST - (13 Reads)

The Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) is launching a new project in its Bioenergy programme – Characterisation of Feedstocks –  and is seeking partners to deliver it .The project aims to provide an understanding of UK produced biomass properties, how they vary and identifying what causes this variability. It will sample several types of UK produced biomass under varying planting, growing, harvesting and storage conditions with the results analysed to understand what impacts different production and storage methods have on biomass properties.

ETI modelling suggests that any future UK energy system capable of delivering on its climate change targets, that is built without the use of bioenergy, would cost more than £50billion per year more by 2050. ETI’s own analysis and work by the Committee on Climate Change (2011), and work funded by the UK Research Councils (e.g. TSec-Biosys, Supergen  and the Rural Economy Land Use Programmes) has shown the UK could potentially utilise reasonable volumes of domestically grown biomass to help fuel the UK’s energy future. To achieve this and in order for bio-dedicated conversion technologies to be confidently designed and deployed, there is a need for greater knowledge of the variability in feedstock characteristics, and understanding of how these affect, on a system level, the overall costs and performance of biomass value chains. A significant part of this, is the need to assess the system level value of biomass pre-processing activities.

The Characterisation of Feedstocks project aims to provide an understanding of UK produced biomass properties, how they vary and identifying what causes this variability. It will sample several types of UK produced biomass under varying planting, growing, harvesting and storage conditions with the results analysed to understand what impacts different production and storage methods have on biomass properties.  The outputs from this project will feed into a soon to be launched parallel project – a techno-economic assessment of biomass pre-processing activities.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 15th August 2014.

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The Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy invites tenders for an ex post evaluation of cohesion policy programmes between 2007 and 2013 on energy efficiency in public and residential buildings. The tenderer will assess the rationale for types of interventions and early evidence of effectiveness of investments in energy efficiency in public and residential buildings.

Legal and natural persons based in EU member states and authorised countries under the WTO procurement agreement may submit bids.

The estimated value of the contract is €400,000 over nine months.

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 25th August 2014.

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Strategic Environmental Science Capital Call

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Fri 22 August 2014 13:36 BST - (12 Reads)

NERC will invest in strategic capital priorities to provide a well-found research and innovation environment that will support existing and future world-class environmental science.

Eligible Research Organisations are invited to submit proposals for capital assets (for science, innovation, estates, I.T, facilities), with a minimum value of £100,000 per proposal, but not exceeding a combined total value of £500,000.

Proposals should demonstrate how the capital asset would support world class environmental science, aligned with NERC's remit and strategic priorities, and have potential to stimulate innovation and economic impact. Proposals that cannot demonstrate strategic benefit to NERC science or do not significantly enhance scientific capability are not likely to be supported.

Joint proposals between Research Organisations are welcome, subject to the same funding limits per proposal. In the case of joint proposals, one Research Organisation should be named as the lead. Research Organisations may submit/be named on a maximum of three proposals, including joint proposals (either as lead or collaborator), as long as the funds requested do not exceed the limits outlined (for an individual proposal or for the organisation).

For more information please go here. The closing date is the 22nd August 2014.

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Sciencewise programme evaluation

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Mon 18 August 2014 13:40 BST - (15 Reads)

The Sciencewise Expert Resource Centre for Public Dialogue in Science and Innovation (Sciencewise) is funded by the Science and Society team of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). Sciencewise aims to improve policy making involving science and technology across Government by increasing the effectiveness with which public dialogue is used, and encouraging its wider use where appropriate. It helps policy-makers commission and use
public dialogue to inform policy decisions in emerging areas of science and technology.

Sciencewise provides co-funding to Government departments and agencies to develop and commission public dialogue activities.

During 2013, it was agreed that it would be appropriate for a full independent evaluation to be undertaken of the current Sciencewise programme (2012 - 2015). The aim of that evaluation is to examine the programme's activities, achievments and impacts, and to draw out lessons and opportunities for the future. The results of the evaluation will feed into decisions by BIS about the future of the programme.

For more information please go here. The closing date is 18th August 2014.

 

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Visit the funding webpage for more opportunities and if you hear of any funding opportunities, please let me know.

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Events and Conferences

BEHAVE Energy Conference 2014

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:05 BST - Expires At: Thu 04 September 2014 12:05 BST - (7 Reads)

3-4 September 2014, Oxford

Website

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Electricity Future Forum

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Thu 06 November 2014 12:07 GMT - (11 Reads)

5-6 November 2014, Mexico

Website

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Utilising academic research in policymaking: Horizon Scanning, trend analysis and policy effectiveness

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Tue 25 November 2014 12:07 GMT - (11 Reads)

25 November 2014, Central London

Website

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Energy Storage India

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Fri 05 December 2014 12:08 GMT - (14 Reads)

4-5 December 2014, New Delhi, India

Website

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5th International Conference on Energy and Sustainability

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Thu 18 December 2014 12:09 GMT - (9 Reads)

16 -18 December 2014, Putrajaya, Malaysia

Website

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International Conference on Hydrogen Production-2015 (ICH2P-2015)

Published At: Fri 25 July 2014 09:00 BST - Expires At: Wed 06 May 2015 12:10 BST - (10 Reads)

3-6 May 2015, Oshawa, Canada

Website

Deadline for abstract submission: 15 October 2014

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Visit the events webpage for more opportunities and if you would like to advertise an event please let me know.

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NERN Blog

I’m very pleased to announce that we are recruiting for two positions at UKERC HQ. On one hand I’m pleased because it’ll provide us with more resources so that we might get the newsletter back to something resembling a reliable publication schedule (apologies that this one has run well into the afternoon). On the other I’m positively ecstatic that we can offer the successful candidates a somewhat unique opportunity to get involved in a wide range of activities at the heart of the energy agenda. You just have to look through the previous 289 newsletters to see that working at UKERC offers a varied and interesting way to establish a career in the energy field or to further develop any sectorial skills and experience.

The two positions are for our new Academic and Industry Network Managers who’ll both play a prominent role in building and developing UKERC’s relationships with key stakeholder communities. If you are looking for a fresh challenge or know someone who’d relish the opportunity then please give these some thought.

On a related note I found myself this week visiting the site where my own career took its first faltering steps. I was visiting the QinetiQ facility at Haslar in Gosport (a delightful short and sunny ferry ride from Portsmouth station) to see their Internet of Energy demonstrator produced under the auspices of the ARTEMIS Joint Undertaking. The Internet of Energy for Electric Mobility project is a Europe wide initiative to develop embedded infrastructure for seamless interconnection of energy systems at different scales. The Haslar demonstrator is one of four and specifically focusses on residential systems.

I’ve been to copious presentations over the years outlining grand visions for interconnected homes (including transport options) and discussing how the power of smart systems can be practically utilised to provide real consumer benefit. This was my first opportunity to see how close the vision is to reality and I’m glad, particularly on behalf of my old colleagues, that there wasn’t a great distance between the two. This isn’t to say that it didn’t occasionally require a certain stretch of the imagination to make the transition from a collection of circuit boards, wires and models to something resembling a consumer product. However what was more important was that the underlying infrastructure looked robust and on the surface clear, sensible and fundamentally implementable.

As well as the practical demonstrator there were a number of research projects which appeared to breaking new ground with respect to bi-directional charging of electric vehicles (utilising the latest silicon carbide semiconductors) and network security (which was by turns baffling and terrifying). It was great to see my old colleagues continuing to be engaged in some cutting edges developments and if I’ve in any way done their efforts justice and it sounds interesting to you then I’d suggest contacting Kevin Green (although please don’t ask him for any stories about me).

Have a great weekend,

Mike

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