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National Institute for Aerospace Technology
90 Projects, page 1 of 18
  • Funder: European Commission Project Code: 275283
  • Funder: European Commission Project Code: 893304
    Overall Budget: 160,932 EURFunder Contribution: 160,932 EUR

    The Earth possesses an internal magnetic field produced by convection movements occurring in the outer liquid metallic core of the planet, called dynamo. In order to understand how the Earth dynamo mechanisms work, it is required to understand how a planetary dynamo operates as a whole, from its birth to its demise. For this purpose, our inner Solar System provides a natural laboratory. Today, amongst all our companion telluric planets, only Mercury possesses a core magnetic field. Venus has no observable internal magnetic field, which is enigmatic. Crustal magnetic fields are observed at the surface of Mars and the Moon, which is indicative that these bodies likely had a dynamo in their history, but is no longer active. More importantly, these crustal fields hold fundamental information about the ancient core field, such as its morphology, intensity and temporal variation. By studying the crustal magnetic fields of other planetary bodies, such as Mercury, the Moon or Mars, where different dynamos might have operated, the dynamo processes themselves can be better understood. The SIGMA project targets to unveil crucial unanswered questions of the Earth global magnetic field evolution through an investigation of different planetary crustal anomalies using a novel methodology of surveys (developed by the host) and the generation of advanced models (expertise of the fellow candidate). The results will have an innovative impact in the imminent planetary exploration, where the candidate would be positioned as a senior and independent researcher with a profile comprising theoretical and experimental pioneering techniques.

  • Funder: European Commission Project Code: 101107201
    Funder Contribution: 165,313 EUR

    CoMeTES is intended to meet EU environmental concerns with the objective of spreading greener power generation systems by making concentrated solar power (CSP) technology economically viable and more secure. With a high global generating potential, CSP has emerged as a promising solution, effectively utilizing intermittent sunlight with the help of thermal energy storage systems. However, the current solar-to-electric conversion is too low due to the commonly used molten nitrates as heat transfer fluids, having limited operating temperature of 580 °C. An alternative would be to use new carbonate mixtures, able to operate at temperatures over 700 °C thereby increasing the thermodynamic efficiency. However, this would require the use of materials resistant to these conditions without increased costs. Therefore, this is CoMeTES challenge: developing low-cost and high-temperature (HT) corrosion resistant slurry aluminide coatings considering new deposition processes, and focusing on hitherto unreported mechanical and stress corrosion cracking aspects. The aim is to increase the TRL of the coating solution from 3 to 5. The project will take place at INTA, a Spanish Public Research Organization, during 24 months with a 4-months Secondment in France at EDF, the main French electric utility company, which has shown profound interest in CoMeTES related to their upcoming CSP plants projects. The applicant is adept in various technical skills in materials science including HT oxidation, corrosion, mechanics and their synergetic effects which forms the core of CoMeTES. Combined with the coating expertise at INTA, it will enable an efficient two-way transfer of knowledge and to get significant research outcomes. CoMeTES will expand the candidate’s experience in coating development and molten salt corrosion as well as large-scale project management, which along with the development of his international professional network will help him to become a distinguished researcher.

  • Funder: European Commission Project Code: 101108587
    Funder Contribution: 165,313 EUR

    The curiosity and the interest of Humanity in space exploration lead to important discoveries on fundamental questions about our place in the Universe, and push forward the development of new technologies, new industries, and important international relationships. Mars is the nearest planet to Earth, has evidence of water, an element essential for life, and a geological history similar to Earth. These characteristics turn it a source of inspiration and a possible home for humans in the future. However, it is an inhospitable place and several solutions are being pursued in order to help terraform the planet. Atmospheric composition, cosmic radiation, temperature, and the lack of a protective magnetic field are just a few of the problems that Humankind needs to face prior to considering Mars colonization. However, there is a group of organisms that can be used to help solve some of the problems – Cyanobacteria. Why? Because they are simple oxygen producer organisms, with low nutritional requirements, and able to live in a wide range of extreme conditions and ecosystems. Moreover, cyanobacteria can also be used as food sources, to produce biofuels, in bioremediation, and as biofertilizers, for instance, and already proved to be good candidates for the task. MarCyan has the major goal of investigate the possible use of cyanobacteria to support Mars exploration. How? Using extremophile cyanobacteria, isolated from a Mars analog site (Rio Tinto, Spain), and submitted to Mars-like conditions in specialized Planetary Simulation Chambers. Moreover, MarCyan intends to go beyond the conventional knowledge and will use transcriptomic and metabolomic analysis to uncover the possible mechanisms that can help to explain the survival of these organisms to extreme conditions, opening the door to a more conscious choice of the best organisms to be used in Space exploration.

  • Funder: European Commission Project Code: 270616

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