East Midlands Renewable Energy (EMRE) has received a £3,000 innovation support grant from the Sustainable Construction innovation Network (iNet) to help develop its renewable-energy and heating demonstration projects.
The Derby-based company, which specialises in the integrated control of renewable-energy systems, will use the funding to finance its Sustainable Housing Innovation Network of Excellence (SHINE) and the SHINE-Zero Carbon (SHINE-ZC) demonstration programmes.
Vincent Smedley, technical director of EMRE, said: ‘Our business is currently focused on solar thermal, solar PV [photovoltaic], air sourced heat pumps and season thermal storage technologies. SHINE-ZC will be the East Midlands’ first zero-carbon social housing demonstrator and illustrates how an integrated “whole-system” approach can lead to truly sustainable dwellings at a realistic cost.’
The iNet grant will allow EMRE to exploit two of the technologies that the company has been developing with Loughborough University for SHINE-ZC.
The first is a thermal store system that stores heat energy generated during the summer to be released during the winter. The second is the whole building environmental control system that controls heating, domestic hot water and electrical demand systems.
Nawal Arshad, business adviser for the Sustainable Construction iNet, said: ‘The project builds upon the Sustainable Construction iNet’s portfolio and the iNet grant helped the company to formulate a business and marketing strategy plan for the continuous development of its renewable-energy products.
‘This facilitated EMRE in collaborating with the SHINE consortium to become part of the SHINE-ZC demonstration project. iNet is encouraging all companies based in Derbyshire that supply products and services for the construction sector to develop ideas – not just renewable energies – to contact the Sustainable Construction iNet. We will help them access funding, advice and information so that they can bring the product to market.’
The grant is jointly funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the East Midlands Development Agency. It is part of the Sustainable Construction initiative, which offers grants of between £3,000 and £10,000 to companies in the construction sector.