European research competition on Renewable Energy 2016
Cypriot Engineer among the winners
According to the Renewable Energy policy multi-stakeholder Network for the 21st century (REN21), last year exhibited the highest annual increase in global renewable power capacity to date. This is at least partly because of the efforts of associations like the Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres (EUREC), which promotes research in the renewable energy field with the aim of developing novel technologies that will enable the use of a completely sustainable energy system.
In an attempt to further stimulate research and spread awareness on renewable energy, EUREC for the last five years, awards the best undergraduate student research projects in the field. One of this year’s winners was Spyros Theocharides, a Cypriot engineer who was awarded the second best research project on Renewable energy for his study with the title: “PV Prediction and Live Monitoring Tool for PV Systems in Cyprus”.
Spyros obtains a B.Sc. in Computer Engineering from the department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of the University of Cyprus. He is currently undertaking an M.Sc. in Computer Engineering at the same department. We contacted Spyros and asked him to give us some more information about the research project that awarded him this prestigious prize:
“The need for the implementation of the system emerged with the rapid development of Photovoltaic (PV) systems in Cyprus in order to avoid power lines overload and extra costs in fuel oils for the generators of power stations.
The tool provides the predicted data of power production of the day-ahead energy production from the cumulative installed capacity of photovoltaic systems in the four districts of Cyprus (Nicosia, Limassol, Larnaca-Famagusta and Paphos). Additionally, the developed tool provides the resulting predictions in the form of plots and as raw data. The forecasted data is sent via e-mail to specific stakeholders, such as the Electricity Authority of Cyprus and Distribution and Transmission System Operators of Cyprus. Moreover, the previous predicted data (previous days) are stored in a local database right after the new predictions are made available, allowing easy access to the end user. Furthermore, the system is able to take measurements from scattered smart meters around Cyprus.
As part of my M.Sc. project, I perform further research in order to provide hourly predictions of PV power production as well as to upgrade the existing tool into an Expert System. The project is based on Mr. Ioannis Koumparou publication: “The development of a forecasting tool for predicting the energy yield from PV systems in Cyprus” (presented at the 9th Mediterranean Conference on Power Generation, Transmission, Distribution and Energy Conversion in 2014 in Athens).”
It is noteworthy that in the REN21’s 2016 report, it was also stated that amongst the renewable energy types, the Photovoltaics (PV) field exhibited record deployment and rapid expansion into new markets for the last year so we can see why PV and solar energy are a major focus in the Research Centre for Sustainable Energy (FOSS) group that Spyros is a member of. However, as Spyros tells us the group has a variety of other renewable energy-related interests as well.
“FOSS was created in order to play a key role in research and technological development activities in the field of sustainable energy within Cyprus and at international level with the aim of contributing to the achievement of the relevant energy and environment objectives set out by Europe. In particular, FOSS strives to become a centre of excellence in energy that will act as a structure where world-standard R&D work can be performed, in terms of measurable scientific production (including training) and/or technological innovation. The selected thematic priorities include amongst others: smart electricity networks, energy storage and efficiency, energy economics, education and awareness on sustainable energy matters and promotion of active involvement of consumers in local energy production using renewable energy sources.”
The use of solely renewable energy sources will enable us to live in a sustainable environment, therefore it is compelling to push towards achieving this in any way possible, through both research and policy making. Members of the FOSS group represent Cyprus in European Energy Committees such as the Energy Committee for the FP7, the Horizon 2020, the SET Plan, the Solar Energy Industrial Initiative, the European Smart Grid Technology Platform, the European Standards Committees on PV and the EU PV Mirror Group and they act as expert evaluators for Energy Proposals within the FP7 and other National initiatives.
Spyros would like to give his warm thanks to Dr. George E. Georghiou (FOSS director) for supervising him and for giving him the opportunity to join and work in his group. He also wants to express his special thanks to Mr. Ioannis Koumparou for his guidance during the development of the tool.
CySE would like to congratulate Spyros for this major recognition and thank him for having an interview with us. We would also like to wish Spyros and the FOSS group all the best for the future.
For more information on the FOSS group visit:
FOSS - University of Cyprus
The research centre is one of the constituent parts of the University of Cyprus. The main scope of the centre is to…
For more information on EUREC visit:
EUREC - The Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres
EUREC, has issued a joint statement together with other European associations on a binding renewable energy target for…
To read the REN21 2016 report visit: