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C2I 2021: Energy & Environment Shortlist

Our Energy & Environment finalists included a groundbreaking light rail project and a supercool, F1-inspired supermarket innovation.  This category is sponsored by BAE Systems

C2I 2021

Category: Energy & Environment

Project: Aerofoil

Partners: Williams Advanced Engineering, Aerofoil Energy

Inspired and based on the design of a Formula One wing, this new aerodynamic device channels the cold air that falls from the top of an open fridge down the front of the fridge unit, preventing it from spilling out into the aisle in a supermarket.

Aerofoil can help supermarkets save up to 30 per cent on energy costs and has the potential to cut annually the equivalent of a month’s worth of the domestic CO2 emissions from a city the size of Manchester. The technology also has the added benefit of making the shopping experience more pleasant for consumers, redirecting cold air away from the aisles.

C2I 2021

Category: Energy & Environment

Project: Biohydrogen from Waste

Partners: University College London, Advanced Biofuel Solutions, Progressive Energy

A fully UK-based consortium has developed innovative processes to convert biomass and municipal solid waste into hydrogen or a drop-in replacement of natural gas that can be used to heat homes and power transport.

The design, which has been demonstrated at pilot scale, includes a two-stage gasification process and an intensified catalytic system, which helps maximise yield and minimises residues and effluents. The project has led lead to the construction of the world’s first commercial demonstration plant to produce renewable gas while removing 7,000 tons of CO2 from the atmosphere.

C2I 2021

Category: Energy & Environment

Project: Coventry Very Light Rail (VLR)

Partners: The University of Warwick, Coventry City Council, Ingerop-Rendel

As part of Coventry Very Light Rail (VLR), Country City Council’s flagship transport project, a novel affordable low-carbon track form with significantly reduced costs targeting £10 million per kilometre has been designed and manufactured by researchers from The University of Warwick, together with design partners Ingerop-Rendel. The track form has been developed in parallel to a zero-emission, battery-powered lightweight shuttle vehicle, which is autonomous-ready.

This novel low thickness track form is designed to sit atop conventional highway support structures. This not only reduces the depth to which contractors are required to dig, it should also enable many utilities to remain in place. The project provides an affordable alternative to traditional track forms, significantly increasing the potential market for light rail schemes in the UK.

Category Sponsor


We are committed to using our world-class technologies to reduce the environmental impact of its activities. In 2021 we announced an ambitious target of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions across all our operations by 2030, and we are working towards a net zero value chain by 2050. We have has also joined the United Nation’s “Race to Zero” campaign, an initiative that seeks to build participation in the move to a decarbonised economy. We’re delighted to be recognising the best innovations in this field by sponsoring the Energy and Environment category in The Engineer’s ‘Collaborate to Innovate’ Awards.