Development of innovative solutions in the application of materials for the construction and maintenance of the road network and its signaling, to improve road safety, the sustainability of the territory and promote new opportunities for economic activity. The project is led by the Diputació de Tarragona and counts with the participation of the Rovira i Virgili University (URV) and Eurecat, and it is co-financed by the Generalitat de Catalunya within the framework of the 2014-2020 FEDER Operational Program of Catalonia, investment objective in growth and employment, and the Provincial Council of Tarragona.
The Specialization and Competitiveness Project (PECT) “We take care of what unites us. Safer and more sustainable roads” has the objective of promoting technology transfer and innovation, as well as improving the positioning of companies and promoting the circular economy in the field of road infrastructures to minimize the use of raw materials.
The PECT has been articulated in two main areas: More Safety and Sustainability as spaces in which, from various parameters, the operations of the different partners are developed.
- Sustainability: the environmental challenge and the achievement of the CO2 emission reduction targets promoted by the European Union and Catalan and local strategies is specified in the case of the road network, in terms of improving the sustainability of the materials used in construction and maintenance of roads.
- Safety: the global challenge of improving road safety is specified in finding new technological solutions that provide information in real time about the road and its maintenance.
The project is divided into a total of 6 operations around innovation and technology, which are focused on very specific challenges around construction, sustainable maintenance, management and innovative and safe use of the local road network in Tarragona.
Eurecat, which participates in the project through the Sustainability Area and the Consulting Unit, will carry out an innovative prospective and technological surveillance study to analyze current trends and technological advances in the field of road infrastructures. On the other hand, Eurecat will also develop technological diagnostics and roadmaps to encourage the realization of R + D projects for the industrial sector linked to the construction of more sustainable roads.
The Operation 6 ‘Innovative Ecosystem’ has a total budget of € 312,608.44, of which € 156,304.22 is subsidized by the FEDER fund, and its objectives are:
- Improve the knowledge and absorption of emerging and disruptive technological solutions by the industry.
- Promote alliances, cooperations, exchange of experiences and generation of synergies with the main agents of the innovation system.
- Promote technology transfer and business innovation strategy through competitive intelligence tools.
- Transfer the knowledge of research centers and the business world to bring innovation closer to the industrial fabric and professionals in the sector.
- Promote the use of secondary raw materials, that is, based on mainly industrial, construction and civil engineering waste, for the manufacture of new materials that can be incorporated into road infrastructures.
- Evaluate the viability of the proposed solutions and the associated environmental and economic gain.
The project budget is €4M with an initial duration of two years, of which half are provided by the Generalitat de Catalunya within the framework of the PO ERDF of Catalonia 2014-2020. The PECTs are projects that contribute to the deployment of the Search and Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialization in Catalonia (RIS3CAT). They are initiatives articulated and promoted from the local level with a strong innovative component for the economic transformation of the territory and for the generation of sustainable economic activity and occupation.
The project also counts with the implication of PIMEC, the Official College of Industrial Engineers of Catalonia and the Association of Engineers of Catalonia.