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Posted 20 November 2014

NovoGrid scoops UCD VentureLaunch Accelerator Award 2014 with intelligent control system for energy efficiencies in wind farms

New engineering venture, NovoGrid has scooped the UCD VentureLaunch Accelerator Award for 2014 and the associated €25,000 prize. The company has developed an intelligent control system to enable wind farm owners reduce energy losses associated with the transfer of electricity to national grids thereby assisting them to improve energy efficiencies and to increase revenues.

Pictured at the UCD O’Brien Centre for Science (l-r): Dr Andrew Keane, Paul Manning and Dr Peter Richardson, co-promoters of NovoGrid, the overall winner of the 2014 University College Dublin (UCD) VentureLaunch Accelerator Programme.
Pictured at the UCD O’Brien Centre for Science (l-r): Dr Andrew Keane, Paul Manning and Dr Peter Richardson, co-promoters of NovoGrid, the overall winner of the 2014 University College Dublin (UCD) VentureLaunch Accelerator Programme.

It is estimated that wind farm owners lose up to 10% of their daily revenues, due to energy losses associated with the delivery of their energy production to electricity grids. This equates to an estimated €2.3 billion in lost annual revenues for wind farm owners globally. With wind farms becoming more popular as an alternative source for generating electricity it is estimated that such losses could triple by 2020.

NovoGrid is a new start-up which emerged from research carried out over several years in the Electricity Research Centre at the UCD School of Electrical, Electronic and Communications Engineering, University College Dublin, by co-founders, Dr Andrew Keane and Dr Peter Richardson.

Paul Manning, an MBA graduate of the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, who has run his own energy services company for many years, and who has worked for several start-up companies in business development and market analysis roles, including the UCD spin-out company BiancaMed, is also a co-founder of NovoGrid.

“We see a very bright future ahead for NovoGrid. Following a planned field trial set for early next year we expect to be operational in over 10 wind farms in Ireland and in the UK during 2015 and to be significantly increasing revenues for wind farm owners,” he said.

Professor Orla Feely, UCD Vice-President for Research, Innovation and Impact, who presented the award said, “Excellence in research and innovation that delivers strong and meaningful impact is central to all we do in UCD. Through this programme we are supporting researchers to accelerate the establishment of research-based companies providing value-added products and services for the global market.”

“NovoGrid is an excellent example of a new venture, emerging from research carried out at UCD, which is being established to address a worldwide problem, in this case in the energy industry. The technology being developed by NovoGrid has significant global potential with global customers. I congratulate the members of the NovoGrid team for winning this year’s UCD VentureLaunch Accelerator Award and I wish them every commercial success for the future,” she added.

The overall objective of the UCD VentureLaunch Accelerator Programme is to support the creation, and to accelerate the launch, of sustainable and profitable new ventures based on intellectual property emerging from UCD and NCAD, a recognised college of the University.

The programme aims is to equip UCD and NCAD researchers with the knowledge, skills and understanding that is required to work as part of a team successfully leading a new commercial venture.

Derek McGarry, Head of Design Innovation and Commercialisation, NCAD, said, "The UCD VentureLaunch Accelerator Programme has provided an excellent opportunity this year for NCAD Origin8 venture Cara Mobility to promote design led innovation to non-designers as part of this invaluable knowledge transfer programme. Cara Mobility, as well as last year’s NCAD participants Gazel and Obeo, have benefitted enormously from the business mentoring that was provided within this excellent intensive accelerator programme and I look forward to more NCAD ventures participating on this programme in the years to come.”

The €25,000 prize consists of €10,000 sponsored by AIB and a professional services package to the value of €15,000 sponsored by Bryan Maguire Business Consulting, Deloitte and NovaUCD.

 

(Produced by UCD University Relations)

 

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Pictured at the UCD O’Brien Centre for Science (l-r): Dr Andrew Keane, Paul Manning and Dr Peter Richardson, co-promoters of NovoGrid, the overall winner of the 2014 University College Dublin (UCD) VentureLaunch Accelerator Programme
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