The President of the European Commission Ursula Von der Leyen, accompanied by the President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades, toured the KIOS Research and Innovation Center of Excellence research facilities on the 8th of July 2021. The visit to the Center was part of her tour to European Union member states to deliver the Commission’s official approval on Cyprus’ Recovery and Resilience national plan. During the visit, KIOS researchers had the honor to present the pioneering research and innovation activities carried out at the Center on intelligent systems and networks, which are relevant to the goals of the Cyprus Recovery and Resilience Plan, and contribute to a greener, more digital, and more resilient Europe.
Demonstration of the KIOS Research and Innovation Activities
Future Energy Infrastructures
KIOS Research Lecturer, Lenos Hadjidemetriou, demonstrated technologies being developed at the Center to support the green and digital evolution of the electricity grid. He talked about the development of future energy systems which aim to increase the power systems’ the efficiency, enable their cost-effective operation, and maximize the penetration of renewable energy sources. According to Dr. Hadjidemetriou, “Through the Recovery and Resilience Plan and in collaboration with the local stakeholders, these novel solutions will be widely integrated into the energy infrastructure of the island allowing Cyprus to meet the ambitious targets for climate and energy”.
Smart Water Systems
KIOS Research Assistant Prof., Demetris Eliades, talked about the development and use of smart water technologies, in collaboration with major water and wastewater organizations (e.g., Water Development Dept., Water & Sewerage Boards) to address some of the critical challenges facing water services of the future, such as severe climate, economic and population pressures. “The Recovery and Resilience Plan will enable us to further advance our research on smart water systems, ultimately helping us to achieve our objectives for the “NextGenerationEU” including protecting our natural environment and ensuring the health of our citizens”, Dr. Eliades commended.
Intelligent Traffic Management Solutions
KIOS postgraduate researchers, Dr. Yiolanda Englezou and Dr. Charalambos Menelaou, talked about the development of novel methodologies for efficient traffic monitoring and control of traffic networks to address urban mobility challenges such as traffic congestion and several other environmental and socioeconomic consequences in cities including pollution and fuel waste. “Our aim is to create an innovative digital platform consisting of a “Digital twin” of Cyprus’ road infrastructure, in collaboration with the Ministry of Transport Communication and Works to facilitate Research and Innovation on Intelligent Transportation”, they added.
Emergency Response Systems
KIOS Research Assistant Prof. Panayiotis Kolios referred to the emergency response technologies developed by the Center, which are currently being used by first responders to manage disasters effectively. According to Dr. Kolios, “A great example is the recent use of our drone technology to monitor and control the fire hotspots in the area of Agia Marina Xyliatou during the latest large-scale fires in Cyprus”.
KIOS Virtual City
Visitors also had the opportunity to see the KIOS Virtual City, where all infrastructures are represented digitally. The Virtual City is a live simulation of the city of Limassol, emulating the normal operation of the city with cars moving around, and people using electricity, and water to assist authorities and operators to plan and operate the cities of the future, significantly impacting the lives of citizens. According to Senior Software Engineer, Dr. Philippos Isaia, “The specially designed Virtual City, allows us to study how the city behaves, when there is a problem with one or more critical infrastructures, which very often are interconnected. Various authorities and operators can use the Virtual City to plan how this can effect everyday functions such as water pumps, traffic lights, electricity and the significant impact on the operation of a city”.
The KIOS CoE will further promote its research and innovation activities and contribute towards EU’s green and digital transition.