«Innotransfer: decarbonisation challenges in the ceramics sector» is an open innovation initiative coordinated by Espaitec as part of the multisector programme promoted by the Network of Valencian Science Parks (rePCV) and supported by the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI)


This morning, the «Innotransfer: Decarbonisation challenges in the ceramics sector» event took place, where its industry and the academic environment in the Valencian Community have reflected on the challenges faced in the decarbonisation domain given: the need to reduce, eliminate and neutralise CO2 emissions in line with the European Climate Law, and the Law of Climate Change and Ecological Transition of the Generalitat Valenciana; the importance of university-company knowledge transfer to continue improving production processes and increasing energy efficiency in the sector.


This event was led by Judith Llorens, the Marketing Manager of Difiere Tendencias, and was opened by the Vice-Rector of Innovation, Transfer and Scientific Diffusion of the Universitat Jaume I, David Cabedo Semper, and the Deputy Vice-President of the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI), Andrés García Reche.


David Cabedo Semper stressed that «science parks are key stakeholders in the Valencian innovation system, and in 2022 they present 32 challenges to the programme and 65 solutions» by means of the Innotransfer initiative. Andrés García Reche pointed out that «we have a top-level scientific community, and the only way that companies in the Valencian Community have to grow in size is to increase their added value and to accomplish more diversity of companies from different sectors. The ceramics industry has to opt for decarbonisation and today’s Innotransfer event can help to take on this process».


This session began with the speech by the member of the Specialised Strategic Innovation Committee (CEIE) for decarbonisation of the AVI, and a teacher at the Universitat Jaume I (UJI), Eliseo Monfort. During his speech, he provided details about «the main objective of the CEIE of the AVI is to provide innovative solutions for priority challenges and to define the necessary actions to accelerate their implementation in the Valencian Community». He also added that «the four main challenges for AVI in this matter as replacing fossil fuels in production and energy use; improving energy efficiency in production processes and mobility; increasing storage and managing energy; promoting alternative raw materials and circular economy to reduce and capture CO2 emissions».


The next speech was by the Head of the Environmental and Sustainability Area of the Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturers Association (ASCER), Victoria Zaera, who stressed that «we have reduced the electricity we use to manufacturer one metre of tiles by 8%». She underlined that «the sector is committed to energy transition, and we are seeking ways towards decarbonisation in the terms set out in Europe because decarbonisation has to allow the economy to be competitive and fair, which is why we have to strike a balance». Finally, she pointed out that «we have to keep in step with dates and objectives. Objectives to reduce emissions have been set, which are hard to fulfil for sectors like the ceramics sector because the technologies that allow them to meet these objectives are lacking».


Next the researcher from the Institute of Ceramic Technology (ITC-AICE), Ana Mezquita, highlighted that «if new technologies are not set up, the margin that we will have to reduce CO2 emissions will be short compared to other times which the ceramic industry has had to face». Mezquita presented different research projects that focus on studying and applying new technologies to deal with the ceramic sector’s energy transition, and addresses a scenario with low CO2 emissions, such as CerOh Strategies!, Hidroker and Energètic, which studies the ceramic industry’s different options to adapt their manufacturing process to the future zero-carbon scenario for forthcoming years.


The event continued with the UJI researcher from the Energy and Advanced Materials Group of the INAM, Franscisco Fabregat who, during his presentation, stressed that «while we keep burning fossil fuels, CO2 indexes will keep rising and will contribute to climate change». He added that «when we convert hydrogen into liquid, the change is absolute and facilitates transport with zero-cost storage». Next the researcher from the Advanced Semiconductors Group of the INAM, Eva Barea, pointed out that «by means of perovskite nanocrystals with metal halide, it has been demonstrated that we can reduce CO2, and by different perovskite synthesis methods, we will be able to obtain certain energy levels and perform a given photocatalytic reaction».


The event continued with the speech by the founder of the spin-off 2D-Match and the researcher distinguished by the Universitat de València, Gonzalo Abellán, who underlined that «the solution to energy problems will depend on location». Next came the turn the researcher from the Chemical Engineering and Materials Technology Group (ChemTech) and a collaborator of the firm Gestión de Ecosistemas Agrícolas (GEA), Carolina Clausell. She outlined that «A2 treatment improves plant metabolism under conditions of stress and increases plant survival in the climate change scenario». She also added that «the effect of A2 on optimum conditions improves water efficiency and the photosynthesis rate, and also increases CO2 fixing».


Finally, the Director of Espaitec and the Manager of the General Universitat Jaume I Foundation, Juan A. Bertolín, presented the challenges platform of the Innotransfer Programme and thanked all the participants present and those online for their interest in this event, and encouraged them to continue developing the programme.




Innotransfer is an open collective management multisector innovation initiative that aims to promote the knowledge and technology transfer process of research groups from the public universities in the Valencian Community to the business ecosystem in this region in key economic sectors like Sustainable Habitat, Agro-Food, Automotion and Sustainable Mobility, Enabling Technologies, Health, Infrastructures and Smart Tourism. It is driven by the science and technology parks of the Valencian Community in which the main business associations participate, as does the Network of Technology Institutes (REDIT), and it is financed by the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI).


On 22 June, Innotransfer will deal with the urban transformation challenges faced by the Valencian City Council, which is organised by the Polytechnic City of Innovation of the Universitat Politècnica de València.