David Appleyard takes a look at the ties between industry and research in the area of renewable energy, and how the two different arenas can work together to bring new technologies to the forefront of commercial development.
David speaks with individuals who have a foot in each camp, such as Marko Palonen, Manager of the R&D Portfolio for the Pulp and Energy unit of Valmet Technologies Oy, and Dr Tero Joronen, a researcher who divides his time between Valmet and Tampere University of Technology, who comment on the need for business and academia to work together in order to successfully develop products for the energy industry. However, others note the importance of remembering that business endeavours are often driven by shareholder directives and profit targets, while much research carried out at universities will not necessarily lead to a product that can be commercialized. However, the interviews David conducts do reveal a strong consensus for the need for major organisations to collaborate with researchers, which could open up both sides to a range of new and effective resources.
The full version of this article will be published in the next issue of Renewable Energy Focus.