The Romanian Sustainable Energy Cluster - ROSENC

Romania: West (Romania)
Vlad Stanciu

Overview

Profile:
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About us

The common aim of the ROSENC association is to promote Romania, the West Region and Timis county as leader in the fields of renewable energy, energy efficiency and the new sustainable energy fields; to participate in international networks as partner or coordinator in projects which concern member organizations competitiveness raising through national and international cooperation.

Formalised strategy
Strategy focus on internationalisation

Cluster composition

  • 63
    Cluster Members
  • 49
    SME's
  • 3
    Large Companies
  • 8
    Research Organisations, Universities, Technology Centers
  • 3
    Other Ecosystem Actors

Achievements

  • Innovation: “The Eco-Cottage, redeveloping an ancient technology”;

Traditionally, when you want to build a house, you first buy the land, then source the materials. But what if you could build the house with the materials you find on the site you already bought?

This is one of the aims of the “Eco-Cottage” technology development project of the ROSENC Cluster. The final objective of this work-group is to obtain a turn-key house (suitable also for other uses) that has a gross cost of EUR 25k for 100 square meters carpet area and 350 euros/year in energy costs, due to the high energy efficiency.

The partners are: BAGS Architecture Office (LP), Polytechnic University Timisoara – Constructions Faculty, INCERC Institute for Building Materials, Watt Visor Installations, Newradcons Constructions, AfiBanat motors and metalworks and many more.

As difficult as it was, the innovation process itself has offered professional satisfaction to all the parties involved as the experts had to find creative solutions to unforeseen problems almost everyday. Most of these solutions will remain trade secrets, but others have already been presented at inventions salons and scientific conventions.

After the development and establishment of the new technology, with no more than 70.000 Euros public financing, the group started to build the first experimental model. The partners have created a joint venture start-up, with the sole purpose to implement the “Eco-Cottage” technology.

As the end product is very easy to finance, we have already found a buyer for the experimental model and the house was only half way built.

The new start-up is now a new and innovative cluster member and has applied for Eur 200k financing for further R&D

  • Sustainable development: “Energy Masterplan of Timis County, a participative development process”;

Timis County accounts for approximately ¼ of the total area of the West Region of Romania, where the ROSENC Cluster operates. In 2013-2014 the Energy Management Agency (AMET) has had the task of developing the Energy Masterplan of the Timis County, within an Intelligent Energy Europe project.

Since the beginning, AMET aimed for a participative development process, involving experts and stakeholders from the region. In this respect, the ROSENC Cluster has been the most important partner of AMET, as it had over 60 members (including universities and research institutes) with a considerable pool of expertize in renewables, energy efficiency and sustainability.

The most important aspect of this collaboration is the involvement of the business sector which has contributed greatly to establishing and confirming the feasibility of the Masterplan proposed actions.

The main actions refer to:

  • energy efficiency in public lighting;
  • development of biomass supply chains;
  • modernizing public transport;

Within the elaboration process, the stakeholders provided market-ready input regarding available technology, financing schemes, capacities etc, which ensured the realism an feasibility of the proposed actions.

Thus, the Masterplan became a tactical instrument, corelating public policies and regional strategy with the pragmatic approach of the market, giving the latter a sense of direction and general advisory limits and ranges for maximum sustainability of the future development.

We consider that the development of the Energy Masterplan is a sustainable development process because all the proposed actions have responsible parties among the stakeholders in respect of technology supply, financing, capacities, management etc.

  • Business development: “Energy Efficiency in street lighting”;

The ESCO system (Energy Service Companies use the energy savings to pay back the initial investment, while the client doesn’t have any costs but shares the savings) has entered the romanian energy efficiency market in the early 2000’s, but it became a buzzword in experts communities only after 2010.

The “lowest hanging fruit” of ESCO projects is in street lighting, where the idea is to change old and inefficient lighting fixtures with LEDs, obtaining in average 60% decrease in energy bill. The investment is minimal compared to the benefits, providing a 3-4 years payback period, considering only the savings in electricity. There are also savings in maintenance, but this is more variable.

The ROSENC Cluster promoted for over a year this kind of energy efficiency projects to municipalities and city halls, but they remained skeptical in respect to the process and benefits, despite the good practice examples that were presented.

Thus, ROSENC support organization changed the game by initiating the “ROSENC Programme for Energy Efficiency in Street Lighting - PREEI”, with a limited number of beneficiaries for the first year. This turned the promotion process (where the target audience can accept a proposal or not) into a competition (where the target audience races to gain an advatage). PREEI offered in fact consultancy for elaborating an opportunity study and organize a public tender in the ESCO system, which has exactly the same effects, but with the terms and conditions of the provider.

As a result of publishing the applicants guide for PREEI on the most common and specialized media, the municipalities raced incredibly to send one of the 10 winning applications of the first year. This experience created a multiple win-win situation:

  • the municipalities became aware of the ESCO system via ATL channels, while 10 of them would receive extensive support in implementing the system for their public lighting infrastructure;
  • the companies in the fields of production and installation of lighting fixtures and energy efficiency financing (ESCOa) found more business opportunities;
  • the ROSENC Cluster gained unprecedented national and international visibility, thus creating an advantage for all the members, regardless of their field of activity.

Management team

Vlad Stanciu
Cluster Manager

Sectorial and industrial focus

Sectoral Industries
Technology fields
S3 EU priority areas
Cross-sectoral industries
Environmental Industries

Services

Support services provided

Other (please specify)

Further information

Activities and services of the cluster management:

1. INNOCATALYST

Innocatalyst program is a platform of activities meant to facilitate collaboration between business and academic fields through workshops, contest of innovating ideas by facilitating access to risk capital and international markets, exchange of experience and good practice transfer, training sessions on innovation and much more.

2. THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROGRAM FOR APARTMENT BUILDINGS (ESCO)

This project in a feasibility study aimed at attracting funds for implementation of energy efficiency measures in apartment buildigs in Timisoara, in the ESCO system.

3. PREEI

The ROSENC Program for Energy Efficiency in Public Lighting (PREEI) is a national program regarding the energy efficiency of the street lighting systems that will be available to all of the public authorities of Romania.

 4. WATT PREDICT

Watt Predict is a system that is able to estimate electrical energy production for the next day. Our goal is to  reduce costs and thus significantly decrease  invoices issued by institutions responsible for imbalances of photovoltaic systems by providing a forecast service with high accuracy and financial accessibility.

Facilitation of collaboration between members:

Degree of cooperation within the cluster

 5. AQUASOLAR

 Aquasolar is a fully automated drip irrigation system designed for surfaces up to 0.5 ha, with an expected lifespan of at least 15 years. It is best used for shrubs and vegetables in hard to reach places.The advantage of this kit is its easy transportation, due to the low weight of the entire system (no more than 20 kg per component) and its foldable structure. Once installed at the desired location, the product can irrigate up to 8 different crops according to their specific needs and the amount of rainfall at the location.

6. ECO-COTTAGE

The Eco-Cottage is a modern house that uses the earth’s insulating characteristics and its constant temperature below the ground to achieve great energy efficiency at a low price. The project is environmentally friendly and uncompromising at the same time, both in terms of price of construction and utilities costs. The ground floor of the building is at 1.2 meters below the ground, and its wall are built using the dug up earth. The house is covered with vegetation. By incorporating mostly local, traditional materials, it promotes good environmental practice, while also being advantageous for the local community and economy.

7. Compressed Air Energy Storage Using Renewables (CAESUR)

The product is an add-on to a company’s existing compressed air system. It uses clean energy sources such as the sun or wind to produce compressed air for a company that requires this resource. The product solves two old industrial problems: the high costs of producing compressed air, and the intermittent supply of clean energy sources. The product does not contain any completely new technology, minimizing any risks associated with unproven concepts. The novelty aspect and the added value of the product come from the way the modules are integrated, and the fact that the energy is stored in a more efficient form than batteries.

8. The Energy Efficiency Program for Residential Apartment Buildings, in the ESCO system is the first ESCO program that aims to implement energy efficiency measures in residential apartment buildings, in Romania.

Technical measures to be implemented, without costs from the apartment owners:

- Building envelope rehabilitation, using fire-retardant and non-toxic rock wool insulation;

- Switching the heating distribution to a horizontal arrangement and installing individual metering for the owners;

- Connecting buildings to hot water recirculation network to cut waiting times for hot water by up to 100 times

Support programmes

EU Programmes

Name & description

1. Beneficiary: National Operational Programme for Economic Competitiveness - 2014-2015, POSCCE 133 SMIS 49767, 1CLT/800011/14.05.2014

2. Project partner: National Operational Programme for Economic Competitiveness - 2014-2015, POSCCE 131 SMIS 54019,  P0102429/5119/22.05.2014 

3. Project partner: National Operational Programme for Economic Competitiveness - 2014-2015, POSCCE 131 SMIS  50328, PO102418/5124/22.05.2014

4. PN-II-PT-PCCA-2013-4-1708, 2014-2017, " Instalaţie pilot mobilă pentru tratarea apelor reziduale cu ajutorul energiei solare ", UEFISCDI 50/2014

Project name

Cooperation activities

International cooperation

Targeted countries

Brazil
Fiji
Kazakhstan
Nepal
Uzbekistan

Transnational cooperation

Targeted countries

Bulgaria
Hungary
Italy
Netherlands
Slovakia

Transnational support activites

Other

Further information

Preparation of Erasmus+ project proposals with organizations from:

-Brazil: GoBrazil

-Nepal: Campaign for Change-Nepal (CCN)

-Fiji: Pacific Youth Council

-Kazakhstan: SEIFULLIN KAZAKH AGRO TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY; Republican State Enterprise operating under the right of economic management A.Baitursynov Kostanay State University of  Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan “A.Baitursynov Kostanay State University”

-Uzbekistan: SAMARKAND AGRICULTURAL INSTITUTE; Taskent State Agrarian University

International support activites

Participation at missions/events/study visits/fairs

Further information

1. Best practices exchange and international project innitiation with ONGs, companies, experts and universities from:

-Slovakia: No Gravity, University of Economics in Bratislava (Erasmus+ and Interreg Danube project proposals, exchange of best practices in communication and management activities);

-Hungary: Archenerg Cluster (CBC Hu-RO and Interreg RO-HU project applications, promotion of members, best practices exchange), University of Szeged (study visits);

-Italy: city of Bolzano (economic mission).

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