5 May, 2015

UPC student winners of SENER awards visit Gemasolar

On Tuesday, May 5, a group of nine students from BarcelonaTech UPC who were winners in the latest round of the SENER Awards paid a visit to the Gemasolar plant, Torresol Energy’s, innovative thermosolar plant designed and built by the engineering and technology group SENER.

The visit was part of the annual SENER Award for the best project in the UPC’s Industrial Technology Engineering Degree programs (GRETI) and Engineering in Aerospace Technology/Aerospace Vehicles Degree programs (GRETA/GREVA) as part of SENER’s collaboration agreements with the university. The solar power plant was visited by the students with the winning project from the GRETI program, while the winners from the GRETA/GREVA programs visited Sabadell Airport. In 2014, the first visit to the power plant was made by the recipients of the previous award.

The Manager of the Gemasolar plant, Raúl Mendoza, acted as the host for the students, together with a representative from SENER Catalonia’s innovation committee, Pierre Huguenet. Together they explained the pioneering operating system of the plant, which is the first solar power plant to apply a central tower configuration with a high temperature molten salt storage system on a commercial scale, and which can produce power for 24 uninterrupted hours using only solar energy, thanks to SENER’s technology.

Over the course of the day, the students were given a first-hand look at this successful engineering project, which is remarkable for its high efficiency. In fact, its continued production in 2014 (its fourth year of commercial operation) exceeded all expectations. Gemasolar has become a global icon of innovation and sustainabilityand both the plant itself and the companies that manage it (SENER and Torresol Energy) have received numerous awards for the project, including the DESERTEC 2014 Award, the European Energy Awards 2013 – which named SENER the Engineering Firm of the Year for the project– and the Award of Merit from the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC), which included the plant in its Best Engineering Projects in the World in the Last 100 Years.

The SENER Awards, now in their 7th year, are the result of a collaboration between SENER and the UPC as part of SENER’s innovation work in Catalonia. Their goal is to promote excellence and search for new talent among current engineering students.

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