Now available “Generation Solar“, the first platform – soon also an app for smartphones – that creates a unique solar energy community and promotes data exchange between photovoltaic installation owners and scientists. The Center for Science, Communication and Society Studies at Pompeu Fabra University (CCS-UPF), directed by Gema Revuelta, has managed the development process of “Generation Solar”, which was born from a unique collaborative process as part of the multinational photovoltaic research project, GRECO.
A new way of doing
The coronavirus crisis is making us rethink the system in which we live, questioning its sustainability. The confinement has in return had cleaner cities with better air quality. In natural environments, fauna and flora proliferate in a healthier way for the planet, including humanity. We cannot live permanently confined, but we can rethink our lifestyles. From politics to the field of small individual actions, it is necessary to really bet on the use of renewable energy.
Today, coinciding with International Earth Day (#EarthDay), we announce the launch of “Generation Solar”, a citizen science application that promotes the use of solar energy and responsible research in this field. If you also bet on the use of solar energy and have a photovoltaic installation, you can already contribute to creating new and better scientific models of energy efficiency, without leaving home!
About “Generation Solar”
“Generation Solar” is a multi-faceted app: It boosts the acceptance of solar energy among the users and their community. And it helps researchers increase their knowledge in photovoltaic research. Generation Solar is also fun: It includes a gaming section where you can be a solar energy detective: For instance, you report as many photovoltaic installations as you can. But in addition to helping solar energy research advance, you can have a good time with “Generation Solar”! You will find a section of challenges to become a detective: for instance, you report as many photovoltaic installations as you can.
The first step: sign up here. In a few days you may also download it in the App Stores for Android and iOS.
How has “Generation Solar” evolved?
One of the three lines of research of the EU-funded research project GRECO is Citizen Science. This approach includes citizens into the whole process of new developments, such as the app “Generation Solar”. Based on a survey among researchers, contributions from citizens and the expertise of Basetis, a technology and consulting company in Barcelona, GRECO elaborated Generation Solar within a year.
Our pioneering app acts as a database of photovoltaic installations. It has various purposes including data exchange between PV installation owners. Another feature allows data to be fed into scientific models to analyse energy efficiency.
Luisa Barbosa Gomez is part of the GRECO research consortium based at the CCS-UPF, Barcelona, who managed the whole development process of the app. “I am very happy that Generation Solar incorporates input both from scientists and citizens. This proves that top-notch research gets even better and more up-to-date with the participation of Citizen Scientists.” shares Luisa.
As part of GRECO, Generation Solar is hosted by the servers of the Instituto de Energía Solar from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), one of the oldest and most renowned research institutes in the world in the field of photovoltaics.
About GRECO project
GRECO is a multinational research project funded by the European Commission, with a budget of 3 million euros for its three-year duration. Its main objective is to implement the Open Science and Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) approaches in a real research project in the photovoltaic sector. The RRI defends that an investigation or innovation, to be responsible, has to take into account the needs, expectations and values of the society in which it is carried out.
The CCS-UPF participates in the project for its long and proven experience in citizen science, scientific communication and RRI. Among other actions, it leads RRI training at the internal level of the GRECO project, as well as the development of an open and responsible science model exemplified in photovoltaic energy.
Professionals from different unions and citizens themselves participate together to develop innovative products related to photovoltaic energy. Through “open science” tools, data and results are shared to the maximum (Open Access) to generate a more accessible research process for the rest of the world.
GRECO targets at paving the way for other researchers adopting this new style of managing science in their own research.
More information about GRECO
Este blog cuenta con la financiación de la Fundación Española para la Ciencia y la Tecnología (FECYT) y el Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades