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number 017. May / june 2016

CONTENTS published CARTIF Research Centre Boecillo Technology Park. Valladolid, Spain www.cartif.com

staff CARTIF Communication Department

design www.typopotamo.com





One of us


Torres Quevedo year 15

photography CARTIF archive. PARK(ing) DAY, the Mersey Forest, Carta Mundial De Turismo Sostenible, El urbanista alicantino, J. Calderรณn, Eulogia Merle, Wikipedia. Cover and back cover picture: Typopรณtamo


EDITOR’S NOTE Caring the environment with the finality of leaving a better world for the future generations seems like an unfashionable purpose. The climate change has a negative effect on the current planet inhabitants, and we have the right to enjoy it and the obligation to keep it. Natured based solutions, protagonist of this last CARTIF NEWSVIEW, are able to alleviate these problems, improving our adaptation to global warming. Cities, main focus of pollution, are starting introducing this kind of solutions. Building ‘re-naturing cities’ is just listen to the nature again and, specially, pay attention. Avoiding river overflows, mitigate the ‘urban heat island’ effect caused by concrete excess, promote green corridors and re-grow our food are some of these solutions. CARTIF research team works to connect Nature and R&D&I and finds out new solutions, which enable to reduce the negative effect of human action over our environment and get a sustainable lifestyle, according to the criterion of future cities.


cartif news

cartif news This news selection is just a small sample of the Center activities in the last months. You can follow us through our web and social networks. CITyFiED SHARES KNOWLEDGE IN CESB 2016 The team of CITyFiED project shared its innovative approaches in the ‘Central Europe towards Sustainable Building’ event, which took place in June 22-24 in Prague (Czech Republic). This event is held every three years and is considered as a precursor for future mainstream advances in the sector. The selection committee accepted three papers from the project on: the CITyFiED project methodology as a tool for innovative renovation, a novel sustainability assessment procedure and sustainability assessment at the Soma demo site. This European project, led by CARTIF, aims to achieve this by developing and implementing innovative technology and methodologies for building renovation, smart grids, district heating networks and mobility.

CARTIF SHARES ITS EXPERIENCE IN Smart Cities IN COLOMBIA CARTIF team presented the experience of the Centre in managing R&D proposals related to smart cities in the framework of the Spanish Conference on Smart Cities, organized by ICEX. Specifically, on the five projects that CARTIF is working in cities across Europe and in which efficiency solutions and urban mobility are being implemented based on the criteria of future cities: sustainability, energy conservation, emissions reduction pollutants and citizen participation. The meeting was attended by the Spanish delegation with mayors of more than 20 Colombian municipalities, such as Bogota, Medellin, Cali and Cartagena.


cartif news

CommONEnergy PROJECT LOOKS FOR THE MOST SUSTAINABLE SHOPPING CENTER The CommONEnergy project team is organizing the upcoming Sustainable Building Challenge: a competition for shopping centers. It is a sustainability award for retrofitted shopping centers in Europe, aiming to identify, showcase and disseminate the best practices in the field. Interested teams have until September 2016 to submit their Expressions of Interest, and the roster of 10 finalists will be identified in October. The finalists will carry out a full sustainability assessment until February 2017, with the final winners awarded in April. The selected shopping center will become in a European best practice, and it will start to be part of a network with other teams working on sustainable retrofitted shopping centers, learning about others across Europe.

R2Cities PROJECT TEAM MEETS IN GENOA Interventions in Kartal (Turkey) and Genoa (Italy) continue at full capacity, so the attention of the research team is now focused on the review and validation of the methodology for the rehabilitation of residential districts. With reference to the Spanish demonstrator located in Valladolid, it has been necessary to review by the European Commission the technical conditions of the proposed interventions. If the procedure goes as planned, the works will begin in September. The European Commission has allowed a oneyear extension of the project, which will allow the whole work early enough to monitor the results of interventions in the three demonstrators.



keywords green area nature


climate change solutions

The 21st century world is facing important environmental challenges that directly affect human beings and the rich biodiversity that surrounds them. Climate change has triggered natural disasters, a generalized increase in temperatures, sea ice loss, the shrinking of coastlines and the extinction of hundreds of species, and it represents a threat to the global supply of fresh food and water, a shortage that less-developed areas in the planet are beginning to endure, ending up in respiratory, cardiovascular and infectious diseases. Investing in nature is inherent in the response to many of these challenges. These lines of work, encompassed by a new concept, “nature-based solutions,” take a step further in the smart city area and bring it to its fullest potential. It is not that there is something new being invented but, as is the case with the “circular economy” concept, nature-based solutions just suggest using common sense to halt an economy based on the excessive spending of resources.

What are nature-based solutions? Nature-based solutions are actions inspired or reproduced exactly –to the slightest detail in some cases and in others by exploring new solutions– that nature itself helps maintain. They are oriented towards the resolution of the aforementioned global challenges in a sustainable manner.


PARK(ing) DAY. Los Angeles, United States of America


The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), founded in 1948, was the first in coining this term. According to what is currently the biggest environmental organization in the world, these solutions are based on the premise that ‘restoration and good management of ecosystems help fighting climate change and poverty in an efficient and profitable way, ensuring energy and food security and promoting protection against disasters. IUCN describes nature as ‘dynamic, creative and a valued partner and at equal level with whom we must collaborate.’ That is why numerous entities, organizations, experts and administrations have worked restlessly during the past few years with the objective of achieving an effective binomial between nature and R&D&I. In the same context, CARTIF’s 5th Forum Technology-Business was developed, concerning nature-based solutions to face urban challenges. The convention’s main objective was to share naturebased ideas and projects that are currently being implemented in different cities, oriented towards the resolution of social, economic and environmental challenges.




Merseyside County


70% of the population in Europe lives in large cities, the main centers of energy consumption and greenhouse gas emission. For this reason, they have become the development laboratories for this type of solutions, which do not only mitigate the consequences of climate change but also have a decisive influence on the quality of life of cities in many other aspects.

On the other hand, it is working on the creation of urban farms with the lowest possible energy consumption that provide the population with ecological and sustainable products. The installation of smart lands, the regulation of water flow or the search for new emission-capture systems complete this technology supply.

Currently, the negative effects of human actions over the environment are increasing social awareness, which is why this is an appropriate moment to invest in this type of solutions; this is a business opportunity with a long way ahead, in which research and innovation play a key role.

With the objective of demonstrating that these solutions bring an environmental, economic and social return, the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI1) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment (MAGRAMA 2) are providing funding through their European programs, and representatives from both entities took part in the 5th CARTIF Forum to speak about them.

nature-based solutions just suggest using common sense to halt an economy based on the excessive spending of resources.

For all the aforementioned reasons, CARTIF sought to convene companies, experts and public administrations in a debate forum on the subject of current experiences, project ideas and funding possibilities in a topic that is not yet popular enough among those who work in R&D. Given the experience on sustainable management and smart cities from the different research teams of the Center (CARTIF works in five projects that are being developed in cities all across Europe, leading four of them), nature-based solutions were a natural step for the different lines of research. Among its lines of work, there is the creation of green infrastructure in cities and their surroundings, a solution that favors the adaptation to climate change while improving the urban landscape.

Funding possibilities

Lydia González, H2020 Programme Committee representative, stated that ‘these programs are designed with the objective of orienting production, consumption and the lifestyle towards sustainability, in accordance with nature conservation.’ On her behalf, María José Alonso, from the Spanish Office for Climate Change, spoke about the funding provided to Clima Projects, which primarily aim for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprint.

1 Spanish acronym. 2 Spanish acronym.



What is being made and what are the results? Fortunately, there are already projects underway to re-nature cities, and one of the most popular is the Mersey Forest, led by the British Paul Nolan. This is a network of forests and green areas that extends across the Cheshire and Merseyside counties, in northwest England. Its history began in the 90’s, when 12 areas of the country were selected for tree planting at long term with the finality of improving local environment while benefiting people, fauna and economy. Since then, more than 9 million trees have been planted in the area, named Mersey Forest, which equals five new trees for each inhabitant. Nolan claimed this kind of solutions play a fundamental role in environmental conservation and they are key actors of the green infrastructure of a country, owing to the creation and management of a tree landscape at long term. Forests allow regions to adapt to climate change, as they can keep urban and rural spaces fresh, reducing temperature rises.

Campo Grande Park, Valladolid

Additionally, their contribution to the economy of the area is undeniable. At The Mersey Forest, ‘each pound invested generates another eight,’ Nolan affirms. His project is creating jobs, especially in the wood industry, and attracting new investors. The improvement of the landscape of villages and cities also contributes to an increase in the number of tourists. In sum, nature-based solutions are improving citizens’ standards of living, changing their habits and influencing their environmental behavior. Green areas have become leisure, game and sport spaces for all ages. In the CARTIF Forum, Nolan shared with the audience


Lake in Campo Grande Park, Valladolid


his company’s commitment for the ‘connection between education and nature,’ ensuring that kids ‘spend more time outside than in classrooms and learn about fauna and healthy nutrition.’ Teresa Redondo, chief manager of the Environment Area at Valladolid City Council, agreed with Nolan, and claims that the capital of Castile and Leon is the current leader in extension of green areas. In the past few years, the City Council has worked with this kind of natural solutions with the objective of solving certain problems such as energy overconsumption, air pollution or noise pollution.

Floodplain ‘La Marjal’, Alicante

Nature-based solutions also allow minimizing the ‘urban heat island’ effect, usually produced in cities with too many construction materials and absence of green areas. Accordingly, experts have confirmed the relation between high urban temperatures and lack of vegetation. Redondo affirmed that ‘in the past 18 years, Valladolid has multiplied its green areas by two and a half,’ currently having more than 40,000 trees across the city. Another example of the benefits of these solutions in cities is the floodplain ‘La Marjal’, built in Alicante (Spain). This floodplain is the most extensive urban park in Europe. Conceived as a water deposit, it can drain the water into the sea in case of flooding and has become a new sustainable green lung: “a laboratory of biodiversity, with animal and plant species that have never been seen before in the area,” in the words of Antonio Sánchez Zaplana, chief of Technology at Aguas de Alicante. This solution avoids flooding risks in the area, reduces the costs of hydraulic constructions and also uses re-generated water for



irrigation and filling of ponds. Besides, Sánchez Zaplana guaranteed the social profitability of the investment, assigning an important part of the budget to the construction of a new public space, a municipal park, for the enjoyment of the citizens. However, ‘not all nature-based solutions implemented in cities are sustainable or ecologic,’ as Jordi Serramía, architect at Singular Green, stated. ‘If a vertical garden or a natural pool uses more resources for their creation, care and maintenance than the benefits they return, they are not sustainable,’ explains Serramía. Singular Green’s line of business is based on green-solution designs for cities with the objective of integrating nature with architecture. Given his notable experience with this kind of nature-based projects, Serramía highlighted the importance of establishing a systematization of the implementation plans of these solutions that allows quantifying the impact and knowing in advance whether or not benefits will be obtained and which kind of benefits. Serramía illustrated this with the vertical garden installed by his company on the facade of the Convention Center of Vitoria (Spain). Besides working as insulation, this installation has meant an increase of biodiversity and has improved the appearance of the building and its commitment with the environment. To conclude this 5th CARTIF Forum, all present agents expressed their conviction that cities and their citizens are demanding a union between urban centers and natural solutions at long term; solutions that allow for an intelligent utilization of properties in natural ecosystems and the services they provide. Nature is at the heart of the socioeconomic development, and research can make it become a main actor in the development of future cities.


Facade of the Convention Center of Vitoria (Spain)



one of us

one of us Julio Rey Pastor

(Spain 1888 - Argentina 1962)

Mathematician. Professor and divulgator. The main introductor of modern Math ideas in Spain in XIX and XX centuries, did not pass his exam of this subject to be admitted in the Armed Forces. Then, he decided to start Exact Sciences in the University of Zaragoza (Spain), where he was a pupil of Zoel García de Galdeano, obtaining the best record of his promotion. Several of his scientific colleagues regard him as a fundamental figure that changed the way of teaching Math in Spain during the first half of XX century. In 1911, he took part in the foundation of the Spanish Math Society, turning into the first secretary. That same year, he became professor of Mathematical Analysis at the University of Oviedo (Spain), and a scholarship in Germany with the famous mathematician Felix Klein. With him, he developed his main study based on synthetic curves, incorporating transformation groups and axiomatic work. On his return, he became director of the Mathematical Laboratory for Advanced Studies. During some years, the professor worked between Spanish and Argentine Universities.


However, in 1935, because of disagreement with academic authorities in the Second Spanish Republic, left Spain and he did not return until 1947. His life’s work is classified in two categories: books elaborated for math and engineering students and the publications of scientific divulgation. During many years, his textbooks were the most used in the academic field of Spanish language. His studies were focused on the algebraic and projective geometry, analysis of series and integrals and linear convergence and summation algorithms, among others. The results of his investigation are studied nowadays in the Mathematical faculties all over the world. In 1956, he received the Juan March prize, and in 1959, the medal of “Alfonso X el Sabio”. Furthermore, he was always committed with the divulgation of Spanish scientific investigation and the boost of the institutions that help its development in Spain. He ensured that “Spanish mathematicians did not receive the recognition that they deserved”. Prophetic…

Torres Quevedo year

2016, Torres Quevedo year The Niagara Spanish Aerocar, the first passenger cable car across the North America, was inaugurated in Niagara (Canada) on August 8, 1916. It had been built by a Spanish company, The Niagara Spanish Aerocar Company, Spanish administrators, engine Spanish builder, material transported from Spain to Canada in the middle of the First World War, Spanish initial commercial exploitation… And, in addition, following the project of Leonardo Torres Quevedo, a Spanish engineer (Santa Cruz de Iguña 1852 – Madrid, 1936).

what we now know as R&D&I. This ferry was followed by other cable cars all over the world, which were built according to the instructions of the Spanish inventor. In fact, every cable car which was built throughout XX Century was based on his patent of 1887: a cable system support and tractors that selfbalances, working at constant voltage determined by the counterweights located at one end. But Torres Quevedo did not invent an only machine. This exceptional engineer devised a system of airships with which he laid the foundations of ballooning. In 1902, he patented the first device with remote control, Telekino, direct precedent of the drones. In 1913, he joined navigation and aviation in his ship-camp, designs that integrate the Spanish Armada in its first aircraft carrier.

It was the culmination of an invention conceived in Cantabria (Spain). Technological innovation was patented in 1887 and spread to Germany, Switzerland, France, United Kingdom, Canada, Austria, Spain, Italy and the United States. This ferry was evolved model from the first open to the public cable car in the world, which had Torres Quevedo portrait been work of Torres Quevedo: the ferry of Monte Ulia (San With his theoretical masterpiece, Sebastian, Spain), opened in 1907. He had been Essays on Automatic (1914), his chess players (1912 financed and built by another Spanish company. and 1922) and eletrcomechanical arithometer (1920), regarded as the first computer in the This partnership was created with an exceptional modern sense of history, he came early several goal: ‘studying in an experimental way the projects decades to the pioneers of computers, automation presented by Leonardo Torres Quevedo and put and artificial intelligence of XX century. them into practice with it was appropriate’. That is,

Building the present

from a not too distant future

Profile for CARTIF

017 CARTIF Newsview June 2016  

Corporate magazine of CARTIF Technology Centre

017 CARTIF Newsview June 2016  

Corporate magazine of CARTIF Technology Centre

Profile for cartif