Interview with ECOFACT project lead Francisco Morentin (Cartif)

  1. Tell us about CARTIF. What is your core business and role within the project?

Fundación CARTIF is a leading Spanish Applied Research Centre in R&D and technology transfer activities created in 1994. CARTIF is formed up by 175 researchers. The main fields of activity are Industrial and Digital Systems, Energy, and Agrofood and Processes. Therefore, it offers experience in various fields in the areas of energy and industry. During 25 years we have been providing end customers ready-to-use industrial solutions.

Our role in the ECOFACT project is primarily focused on the coordination activities and regarding technical activities we are responsible of the establishment of the reference framework and methodology.

  1. Why did your organisation get involved in the ECOFACT project? How does this activity fit with the normal business of your organisation?

Well, we are a research centre highly experienced in European research projects and therefore we get involved since the very first stages of the proposal phase. As explained, the normal business of our organization is the development of research projects (national and international) and therefore this is indeed our normal business. In this project, our internal departments of (Industrial and Digital Systems, Energy, and Agrofood and Processes are involved so it covers all the possible thematises of our company.

  1. How will the outputs of the ECOFACT project help production system energy performance?

Lord Kelvin (1824 – 1907) said “What is not measured, cannot be improved”. However, it is not always possible to effectively measure the different parameters and variables that affect the energy performance of production processes as they are carried out in in real life factories. ECOFACT aims to develop new innovative ways to define, measure and improve the energy efficiency of complex modern manufacturing through ab eco-innovative energy factory management platform based on improved dynamic LCA and LCCA.

  1. What are the technical challenges your work in ECOFACT is trying to overcome?

As the coordinator of the ECOFACT project, my biggest technical challenge is to achieve effective coordination between the different components of the project. For this I must quickly acquire and manage a minimum level of technical knowledge in disciplines as diverse as monitoring systems, industrial software systems such as MES and ERPs, production management systems, energy management systems, environmental impact analysis tools, software development, standardization and certification processes, replication and exploitation activities and finally dissemination activities (like answering this questionnaire).

  1. What positive impacts will the projects have when complete?

There are several expected objectives for the ECOFACT project, I will only explain one (more involved) and leave the others for the next interviews with other consortium partners. We aim at defining and developing a suitable methodology for manufacturing management in order to generate a shift from the end-of-pipe traditional way of thinking to a holistic approach, which accounts for energy and environmental dimensions at the same level than production rates, product functionality aspects and quality control aspects.

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