ESB today announced a new partnership with the University of Limerick to support the brightest energy researchers in the University over the next four years.
The partnership was announced this morning at the unveiling of a new art installation which is created around the runner of an original Francis Turbine from Ardnacrusha Power Station.
It generated clean electricity continuously for 66 years, before being decommissioned and replaced in 1995 and donated by ESB to UL in 2010.
The installation is located in the courtyard of the Bernal Institute at UL, where over 260 world leading researchers in the fields of Science and Engineering are based, including three PhD students, Cian Murphy, Hamid Hafizi and Indraneel Roy Chowdhury, whose energy related research will receive funding from ESB through the new partnership.
“I was a curious child, always asking ‘why’ and wondering about the world we inhabit, and it was that curiosity that led me to science,” said Cian Murphy, speaking at today’s launch of the partnership.
“My research focuses on the use of smart materials in composite structures and my vision is that one day we will all be generating our own clean electricity, just by walking down the street.
I’m excited that my curiosity might now lead to a real benefit to our society, and this funding support from ESB will greatly assist me in this goal.
Dr Desmond Fitzgerald, President of UL, said the ESB's investment is a vote of confidence in UL.
"Ireland’s energy challenges are current. In UL we are involved in a race against time to develop novel, more sustainable, more efficient means of energy generation and use.
"The fact that ESB is supporting three PhD student scholarships in energy and sustainable development is testament to the urgency of this research.
"It is also a vote of confidence in UL, particularly our people in the world class Bernal Institute who are well placed to lead in this field."