EXPLORATORY PROJECTS PROMOTED R&T INITIATIVES

ENGINEERING MACRO-DEPARTMENT INITIATIVE GAVE SUPPORT TO PROFESSORS IN ORDER TO PROMOTE THE DEVELOPMENT OF RESEARCH IN PRIMARY STAGES.



August 11, 2017

As a tool to promote the development of R&D projects, in the early stages, exploratory projects have been established, in the Departments of Engineering of the Universities of Talca, Bio Bio and La Frontera, arising out of the R&T Node of the Macro-Department, in order to generate transferable or scalable proposals.

In this context, and in response to the commitment to promote inter-agency linkages, a presentation of four exploratory projects executed on 2016 and completed at the Department of Engineering of our Academic Institution was held. 

"It is important to enhance technology transfer activities that were not developed at the Department of Engineering, which is why our academics did not have a defined line of work. Therefore, with this initiative we give momentum to implement their ideas and apply them through the delivery of a base resource that generates lines of work that may be transferable to society, to the market, that is, that can be scaled to other competing  funds", explained the Director of the UTALCA Macro-Department , Carlos Toledo.

Sustainability

It should be noted that the completed projects are characterized by components of sustainability and processes improvement, such as the case of the development of an intelligent solar pumping station to optimize the efficiency of solar panels, executed by Professor Javier Muñoz. Another initiative, by Professor Marcela González, allowed the evaluation of the eco-efficiency in the wine supply chain using jointly Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA). 

Also, a pilot study at the Viña Concha y Toro winery was completed to determine the predictive potential of various models based on techniques of artificial intelligence and machine learning, in order to improve the volume estimate of the harvest in a vineyard. The project was carried out by the academic Jose Reyes. In addition, researcher Carlos Torres contributed to the development and testing of a small-scale electrostatic precipitator.

In this regard, Professor Javier Muñoz concluded that "this is a great opportunity for us as academics, because there are ideas and jobs that are located in an initial phase, and it is not easy for them to apply to funds that are larger, so having this type of resources enables us to scale ideas and empower them to obtain funds and at the same time engage students at undergraduate and graduate levels to project their ideas."



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