Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-04-2014 | Award Amount: 6.88M | Year: 2015
Knowledge regarding the complex interplay between agricultural land use and management and soil quality and function is fragmented and incomplete, in particular with regard to underlying principles and regulating mechanisms. The main aim of iSQAPER is to develop an interactive soil quality assessment tool (SQAPP) for agricultural land users that integrates newly derived process understanding and accounts for the impact of agricultural land use and management on soil properties and functions, and related ecosystem services. For this purpose, >30 long-term experimental field trials in the EU and China will be analysed to derive regulating principles for integration in SQAPP. SQAPP will be developed using a multi-actor approach aiming at facilitating social innovation and providing options to land users for cost-effective agricultural management activities to enhance soil quality and crop productivity. SQAPP will be tested extensively in 14 dedicated Case Study Sites in the EU and China covering a wide spectrum of farming systems and pedo-climatic zones, and rolled-out across the continents thereafter. Within the Case Study sites a range of alternative agricultural practices will be selected, implemented and evaluated with regard to effects on improving soil quality and crop productivity. Proven practices will be evaluated for their potential applicability at EU and China levels, and to assess the related soil environmental footprint under current and future agricultural trends and various agricultural policy scenarios. How the soil quality tool can be utilized for different policy purposes, e.g. in cross compliance and agro-environmental measures, will also be investigated and demonstrated. A comprehensive dissemination and communication strategy, including a web-based information portal, will ensure that project results are available to a variety of stakeholders at the right time and in appropriate formats to enhance soil quality and productivity in the EU and China.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: SSH.2011.1.2-1 | Award Amount: 10.37M | Year: 2012
The objective of this 4-year project is to provide the analytical basis for a socio-ecological transition in Europe: the change to a new growth path with smart, sustainable and inclusive growth as is envisaged in the EU 2020 strategy. In order to support the transition, we analyse the need, the feasibility and best practice for change, specifying the institutional changes needed at all policy levels to implement these options. The old and new challenges Europe is facing define the starting point: globalisation, new technologies and postindustrialisation, demographic change and ecology in the context of welfare systems that have come under stress due to high public deficits. The vision is that Europe will become a role model for a high road growth path which actively incorporates social and ecological goals, employment, gender and cultural aspects in an ambitious, forward looking way while continuing to be competitive in a globalised world. To achieve these objectives, the consortium will carry out and synthesise robust research in research areas covering the challenges to the welfare system, the biophysical dimension of socio-economic development, the identification of drivers towards socio-ecological transition, the role of governance and institutions on the European as well as the regional level. The consortium will benefit from ongoing dialogue with international experts in the form of expert panels and sounding boards, taking into account their views on the direction and feasibility for this new growth path. The project will be carried out by a consortium of 34 partners from universities and research institutes with international and interdisciplinary expertise. It represents 12 member states. High level Scientific and Policy Boards will monitor the analysis and the policy conclusions to guarantee the impact and dissemination of the results.
Friedler F.,University of Pannonia
Applied Thermal Engineering | Year: 2010
Energy saving, global warming and greenhouse gas emissions have become major technological, societal, and political issues. Being closely related to energy supply, they are of a strategic importance. Various conferences are being organised for providing international venues for closer cooperation among researchers. The series of conferences "Process Integration, Modelling and Optimisation for Energy Saving and Pollution Reduction" (PRES) play a pioneering role in contributing to the solution of the related problems through presenting new methodologies and initiating cooperation among participants that often result in international projects. The PRES conferences have been dedicated both to the theoretical and to the practical aspects of energy saving and pollution reduction. The PRES series, established thirteen years ago, was originally dedicated to energy integration and improving thermal efficiency. Following the new challenges and priorities, the scope of the conferences has been extended to include all energy and pollution prevention related issues. This contribution focuses on the period covered by PRES, reviewing at least some major presentations contributing to the development of process integration and optimisation tools for energy saving and pollution reduction. The development of the mathematical models has been covered as well, since it is closely related to the area. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Bokony V.,University of Pannonia
PloS one | Year: 2012
Urbanization creates novel environments for wild animals where selection pressures may differ drastically from those in natural habitats. Adaptation to urban life involves changes in various traits, including behavior. Behavioral traits often vary consistently among individuals, and these so-called personality traits can be correlated with each other, forming behavioral syndromes. Despite their adaptive significance and potential to act as constraints, little is known about the role of animal personality and behavioral syndromes in animals' adaptation to urban habitats. In this study we tested whether differently urbanized habitats select for different personalities and behavioral syndromes by altering the population mean, inter-individual variability, and correlations of personality traits. We captured house sparrows (Passer domesticus) from four different populations along the gradient of urbanization and assessed their behavior in standardized test situations. We found individual consistency in neophobia, risk taking, and activity, constituting three personality axes. On the one hand, urbanization did not consistently affect the mean and variance of these traits, although there were significant differences between some of the populations in food neophobia and risk taking (both in means and variances). On the other hand, both urban and rural birds exhibited a behavioral syndrome including object neophobia, risk taking and activity, whereas food neophobia was part of the syndrome only in rural birds. These results indicate that there are population differences in certain aspects of personality in house sparrows, some of which may be related to habitat urbanization. Our findings suggest that urbanization and/or other population-level habitat differences may not only influence the expression of personality traits but also alter their inter-individual variability and the relationships among them, changing the structure of behavioral syndromes.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: INFRAIA-1-2014-2015 | Award Amount: 10.13M | Year: 2015
ACTRIS-2 addresses the scope of integrating state-of-the-art European ground-based stations for long term observations of aerosols, clouds and short lived gases capitalizing work of FP7-ACTRIS. ACTRIS-2 aims to achieve the construction of a user-oriented RI, unique in the EU-RI landscape. ACTRIS-2 provides 4-D integrated high-quality data from near-surface to high altitude (vertical profiles and total-column), relevant to climate and air-quality research. ACTRIS-2 develops and implements, in a large network of stations in Europe and beyond, observational protocols that permit harmonization of collected data and their dissemination. ACTRIS-2 offers networking expertise, upgraded calibration services, training of users, trans-national access to observatories and calibration facilities, virtual access to high-quality data products. Through joint research activities, ACTRIS-2 develops new integration tools that will produce scientific or technical progresses reusable in infrastructures, thus shaping future observation strategies. Innovation in instrumentation is one of the fundamental building blocks of ACTRIS-2. Associated partnership with SMEs stimulates development of joint-ventures addressing new technologies for use in atmospheric observations. Target user-groups in ACTRIS-2 comprise a wide range of communities worldwide. End-users are institutions involved in climate and air quality research, space agencies, industries, air quality agencies. ACTRIS-2 will improve systematic and timely collection, processing and distribution of data and results for use in modelling, in particular towards implementation of atmospheric and climate services. ACTRIS-2 invests substantial efforts to ensure long-term sustainability beyond the term of the project by positioning the project in both the GEO and the on-going ESFRI contexts, and by developing synergies with national initiatives.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IIF | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IIF | Award Amount: 190.11K | Year: 2015
The integration of process, supply chain, and network design with sustainability is the main focus of this proposal. The goal of the proposed work is to aid the cost-effective improvement of the sustainability and general environmental performance of manufacturing processes and business supply chains. This is to be done by combining concepts and methods from the P-Graph framework for network and process design, with process and supply chain concepts, and ideas and methods from sustainability and sustainable environmental management. The concrete result is expected to be a computer-aided methodology for designing manufacturing processes and sustainable supply chains in terms of cost and sustainability metrics by utilizing the P-graph framework. The methodology will be embedded in practical software suitable for incorporation into existing computer-aided processes and supply chain design. The proposed work would be an outcome of the fellow (Heriberto Cabezas) and the research group led by the creators of the P-Graph framework at the University of Pannonia. The fellow currently serves as Senior Science Advisor to the Sustainable Technology Division at the Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and he has been creator of much of the theory underlying the development and application of science-based metrics to sustainability. The p-graph framework provides a mathematically rigorous procedure for synthesizing optimal and alternative suboptimal networks subject to multiple objectives and constraints, which include profitability and sustainability in the proposed methodology. Specifically, to evaluate the sustainability of a given process under construction including its supply chain, sustainability metrics are inherently incorporated into the design procedure.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-02b-2015 | Award Amount: 7.63M | Year: 2016
European crop production is to remain competitive while reducing environmental impacts, requiring development and uptake of effective soil improving cropping systems. The overall aim of SOILCARE is to identify and evaluate promising soil-improving cropping systems and agronomic techniques increasing profitability and sustainability across scales in Europe. A trans-disciplinary approach will be used to evaluate benefits and drawbacks of a new generation of soil improving cropping systems, incorporating all relevant bio-physical, socio-economic and political aspects. Existing information from literature and long term experiments will be analysed to develop a comprehensive methodology for assessing performance of cropping systems at multiple levels. A multi-actor approach will be used to select promising soil-improving cropping systems for scientific evaluation in 16 study sites across Europe covering different pedo-climatic and socio-economic conditions. Implemented cropping systems will be monitored with stakeholder involvement, and will be assessed jointly with scientists. Specific attention will be paid to adoption of soil-improving cropping systems and agronomic techniques within and beyond the study sites. Results from study sites will be up-scaled to the European level to draw general lessons about applicability potentials of soil-improving cropping systems and related profitability and sustainability impacts, including assessing barriers for adoption at that scale. An interactive tool will be developed for end-users to identify and prioritize suitable soil-improving cropping systems anywhere in Europe. Current policies and incentives will be assessed and targeted policy recommendations will be provided. SOILCARE will take an active dissemination approach to achieve impact from local to European level, addressing multiple audiences, to enhance crop production in Europe to remain competitive and sustainable through dedicated soil care.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2013.3.2 | Award Amount: 4.63M | Year: 2013
The HILED project will advance the state of the art of Solid State Lighting (SSL) through research on innovative light engines that take advantage of full control of light. The incorporated intelligence enables responsive fine tuning of spectral properties in real time, as well as precise dimming capabilities. These smart engines with added intelligence offer natural illumination patterns that respect our biological circadian rhythms. This can be done very accurately by spectral selection or even through Correlated Colour Temperature (CCT) adaptation by using the most efficient combination of white LEDs, coloured LEDs, and OLEDs as building blocks of the light source, while satisfying different constraints on energy efficiency. Markets such as horticulture and greenhouses would also benefit from fully controllable light engines, whose spectral content can be dynamically adapted to the plant needs in real time, through the establishment of algorithmic strategies and feed-back systems that control the growth process. Besides the spectral effects on leaf photosynthesis there are more important spectral effects on morphology and development of plants. Morphological effects directly influence the ornamental value of cut flowers and pot plants and therefore their economic value. Furthermore, these morphological effects may strongly influence the growth rate of the plants. Last but not least the choice for light spectrum may affect the production of secondary metabolites. These metabolites can have human health promoting effects (e.g. anti-oxidants, vitamins, etc).Additionally, these light engines are particularly well suited for museum lighting, where careful selection of spectral content may achieve an optimal balance between energy efficiency, quality of light and art conservation. The project aims overall to foster lighting systems, which can communicate through intelligent protocols and interact with humans in real time, while proving cost-effective solutions
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-RISE | Phase: MSCA-RISE-2014 | Award Amount: 405.00K | Year: 2015
This Research and Innovation Staff Exchange project aims to develop and maintain long term collaborations between Universities in the EU with China and Australia. This collaboration will build a truly world-leading group through 140 person months of structured staff exchanges involving 38 individual researchers to innovate next generation advanced thermal processing of wastes. The research innovation unites the researchers with a common goal to advance waste pyrolysis technology by introduction of novel catalysts to produce an innovative two-stage pyrolysis-catalytic process and to exploit that technology. The technology allows flexible processing of waste plastics to selectively target and produce high value products - (i) hydrogen, (ii) carbon nanotubes, (iii) chemicals or (iv) gasoline. Our partners in China have expertise in novel advanced thermal processing of wastes developed to pilot and demonstration scale. Our Australian partner has expertise in emerging catalytic technologies coupled with green chemical processes. The staff exchanges will provide outstanding knowledge transfer and career development for the experienced and early stage researchers. The project targets 25 million tonnes of waste plastics generated in the EU each year, which can through research and innovation be turned from a waste problem into a valuable resource for high value products. The project showcases to the public a high profile example of waste as a resource. This project will provide an innovative and economic recycling technology concept for European municipalities, waste management companies and SMEs. The EU partners plan exploitation of the technology through spin-out companies and industrial partnerships. Also, the input of advanced technologies into the traditionally low technology waste processing industry will provide the opportunity to up-skill the existing workforce and showcase an attractive career path for professional engineers, scientists & technologists. We propose an Amendment to the Grant Agreement by extending the research and innovation to include biomass waste as an additional feedstock. Biomass waste is a major waste source in the EU presenting non-food crop biomass such as, urban waste wood, forestry residues, agricultural residues and the biomass portion of municipal solid waste (paper/cardboard). Extending the project to include biomass wastes further maximises the proposed flexibility of the technology. Also mixing waste plastics and biomass wastes advances the current state-of-the-art of knowledge in high value product production from waste materials since there is very little research in the area in regard to the production of (i) hydrogen (ii) carbon nanotubes (iii) chemicals or (iv) gasoline
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENERGY.2011.8.1-2 | Award Amount: 7.37M | Year: 2012
The overall objective of EFENIS is to facilitate and accelerate a move to low carbon manufacturing processes and site management by deployment and demonstration of innovative energy management systems and enabling efficiency technologies, which extend the scope of energy management outside the boundaries of a single plant to total site and then beyond the total site to district heating/cooling systems. The potential is demonstrated across a selection of the EUs most energy-intensive sectors thereby enabling integration across industries and processes while at the same time ensuring wide-spread deployment post-project. The EFENIS project will significantly advance the state-of-the-art with regards to site optimisation and Energy Management Systems. Currently, no deployed solution with a similar holistic scope exists. The major novelty of the project will be the creation of the foundation required for comprehensive, high-impact industrial deployment of energy systems based on Total Site Integration approach in the target industries and subsequent commercial exploitation. The project is focused on allowing integration of the developed technologies and solutions to both new designs and as retrofits to existing sites to ensure fast, widespread and cost-efficient industrial deployment. Until now, both technical and non-technical barriers have prevented the exploitation of this potential.