Smart Energy Carriers: a key concept for the future energy scenario

The possibility to reach the net zero greenhouses emission scenario in the energy sector is just around the corner keeping advantage from the available knowledge and technologies at deployment readiness level. "To wait for a unicorn technology is useless” because we lose time and already have most of the required science and technologies at hand.  The aim of the Energy Talk is to spread the concept that it is possible to shuffle the cards already in our hands for working out a new and proper strategy to face with the energy transition and the long term scenario of zero net emission.

Energy carriers cover a central role in the panorama of energy production systems as they can be considered a key answer to environmental sustainability also accomplishing the security of supply system. Coupled with advanced conversion technologies, they are synergistic twin strategies to effective deal with transition to net zero greenhouse gas emission. In this framework, Smart Energy Carriers (SECs) represent a wide category of molecules, dealing with standard and bio/waste derived fuels as well as with molecules used to store renewable sources energy surplus, locally produced or made available to be safely and cleanly transformed into energy by means of the best accessible technology in a distributed energy production system. Therefore, Smart Energy Carriers are a building block for the net-zero conversion gas emission scenario, supporting the deployment of Variable Renewable Energy Sources, maximizing the energy mix as well as representing the key asset in the setup of virtuous cycles of energy and materials.

SMARTCATs COST Action ( is a collaborative network of about 80 entities, among research and academic institutions as well as companies, from 30 countries, set up within the COoperation in Science and Technology  European framework ( under the umbrella of Horizon 2020 Programme. It has the aim of seeking and exploiting SECs by developing tools in a coordinated network of scientists with the objective to make available design and control technologies of advanced thermochemical conversion systems in view of their effective deployment.

During the Energy Talk the effort and outcomes carried out during the four year of networking activities on Smart Energy Carriers will be explained with the support of videos, interactive videos and props. It will be shown how the SECs concept fit all the major requests of the Clean Air for All.


Italian National Research Council (CNR) - Istituto di Ricerche sulla Combustione
Principal Researcher