AREA Science Park (Trieste – Italy)
Who we are
AREA Science Park is the leading science and technology park in Italy with multidisciplinary features and facilities located in Trieste and Gorizia, providing world-class infrastructures and equipment for research.
It draws together facilities and skills to work on behalf of the competitiveness of the private sector, the promotion of research results, local innovation as well as on business development and internationalization. With 88 resident organizations – R&D centres and knowledge intensive companies – and a staff of 2,400 people, AREA Science Park is a resource for small, medium, and large enterprises, research centres, startups, public administrations, and the region as a whole.
AREA plays the role of a regional hub for innovation, where top training, research and enterprises meet and become a key resource for the growth of the territorial economy and employment opportunities. Over the years, it has actively contributed to the enhancement of the territory attractiveness and competitiveness through technology transfer, innovation management and energy efficiency related projects. So far, AREA has managed and taken part in several national and international projects targeting innovation and energy sector (ENERPLAN, IUSES, PATRES, PINE, EMILIE, TESSI, MARIE), that have further increased and widened AREA’s specific competences in those fields.
How will the partner contribute to the success of AdriaWealth?
Focusing on thematics such as renewable energies, sustainable development, feasibility studies for energy saving in buildings, AREA will promote the use of renewable energy as a tool to achieve tourism sustainability.
The Friuli Venezia Giulia region is a land of great cultural and historic heritage, still alive in the many cities and towns, together with a developed rural tourism on the Karst plateau, with the Carnic Alps nearby and access to the Adriatic Sea. For this reason, one of the main assets of this region is tourism in all these various forms.
Learning from experience and know-how gained through previous and ongoing projects and counting on a network of sector experts, the aim of AREA participating in the Adriawealth project and its important contribution is to provide technical support to public stakeholders and private players seeking to invest in the sectors of sustainable tourism or innovative renewable energies, such as biomass, photovoltaic solar and geothermal energy, pursuing the intent to minimize the use of scarce and non-renewable resources in the development and operation of tourism facilities and services.
The Adriacold Project
AREA Science Park has been the leading partner of “Adriacold – Diffusion of Cooling and Refreshing Technologies using the Solar Energy Resource in the Adriatic Regions”, a project aimed at promoting and spreading the use of alternative energy systems for buildings conditioning, in the territory of the Adriatic Sea basin, in order to gain and increase independence from fossil fuels.
Air conditioning demand is seeking a steady increase during the last decade, mainly due to reasons related to global warming and for guaranteeing higher comfort in both public buildings and private homes.
To a growing use of air conditioning systems corresponds a higher need of electric power and a burden on costs to be allocated for electric expenditures, with consequences on the exploitation of non-renewable resources, not to mention the negative impact on the environment (traditional cooling liquids and gases release in the atmosphere polluting emissions).
Adriacold has contributed to support sustainable energy policies by promoting the adoption of solar cooling energy solution for air conditioning, based on ten pre-feasibility studies and a network of six new pilot plants.
The solar cooling plants have been installed in already existing buildings to serve schools, hotels, greenhouses, and public offices (1 in Slovenia, 2 in Croatia and 3 in Italy). These plants have demonstrated the possibility to use high-efficiency collectors capturing solar energy (to heat a flow of water) that, coupled with a solar-driven chiller which uses the properties of certain salts to change phase (such as zeolite salts or lithium bromide), can cool down water at a temperature in the range of 7-12 Celsius degrees.
This type of system, for the way it operates, consumes almost exclusively solar energy: it exploits an absorption cycle, fed directly by solar energy, which covers up to 98% of energy needs of the equipment, while traditional air conditioning machines commonly use a mechanical compressor activated by an electric motor. Moreover, solar cooling technologies provide a proven advantage: the period of maximum solar energy use for air conditioning of buildings corresponds to the period in which there is the maximum solar energy availability.
Therefore, Adriacold concentrates on analysing all practical applications of Solar Cooling technologies in order to promote their use, disseminating technical know-how while proving both economic and environmental benefits.
Adriacold project partners, after having performed a preliminary analysis, have recognized the absolute lack of transnational models and tools for the diffusion and application of solar cooling systems. This recognition shaped the Adriacold project team’s decision to design, implement, test and monitor the 6 demonstration pilot plants target to specific application and geographical positions.