As energy demand continues to increase in an unsustainable and non-environmental way, a worldwide need arises for advancement of renewable energy technologies. At the same time the developing world is reaching a critical pivotal point for high penetration of renewables in the national grid which is expected to result in severe operational problems unless restructuring of the current, traditional grid takes place. Thus the research field chosen to be enhanced in this project, namely PV and integration in smart grids, has a timely and significant importance of global dimensions, particularly so for regions of high solar insolation such as Cyprus and the MENA region.

The concept underpinning the project foresees the strengthening of a research field in an academic institution of a low performer country through linking effectively with internationally-leading research partners in the specific field. In particular, the PVlab of UCY will twin with AIT and DTU in order to enhance its research and innovation capabilities in PV and grid integration in smart grids. The specific topic has been selected based on the excellent track record and fully-operating state-of-the-art infrastructure in solar energy and PV technology research at UCY developed since 2005.

Partnering with AIT and DTU is of prime importance in seeing the targets of the PVlab materialize. The partners were carefully chosen based on their excellent track record in the field of smart grids and integration of renewables, their expertise in innovation intensive activities, spin-off companies, and industrial cooperation, as well as their know-how in institution management, operation, development and sustainability.

The TwinPV project started in 1/1/2016, and is scheduled to run for 36 months. It has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the agreement No. 692031.