NETWorks is published by Distinctive Publishing Ltd, Aidan House,Sunderland Road, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear NE8 3HUTelephone 0191 4788300
Martin WilliamsonFor all enquiries including editorial, subscription andadvertising please contact Distinctive Publishing. With thanks to all our contributors.NETWorks is supported by NETPark
NETWorks reports on the very latest science and technology news, putting discoveriesand advances in the context o everyday lie – showcasing County Durham and theNorth East as a place o scientic excellence.
This issue looks at chemicals, electronics andthe environment. At frst glance they may seemunrelated, but they all interact and they’re all areasin which our region is playing a signifcant role. We also look at the North East InnovationConnectors, a new approach which enables theregion to interact strategically across dierenttechnology sectors. I am proud to say NETPark is atthe heart o this new approach.You and I, as individuals, beneft rom thisinteraction, but there are also enormous potentialbusiness benefts.There’s a conerence due to take place in the region inOctober – Green Leaders. At a time when green issuesare riding high on the political agenda and the regionis leading the way on renewables, the conerence willexamine the benefts o being a green business. A month later, in partnership with the EKTN, we’ll bestaging Solar Flair 2009 – the National PhotovoltaicsConerence – encouraging companies to innovate,collaborate and embrace new technologies.Solar Flair will pose the question, why is this ast-growing technology important?Because photovoltaics (PV) really does epitomise theinteraction I mentioned earlier. Its environmentalbeneft as a potential energy source is huge andthat potential will be realised via a combination ochemicals and electronics.To get some idea o the business benefts, thin flmPV (TFPV) alone is predicted to be worth around$7.2bn by 2015, capturing 35% o the PV market. We already have Romag, a leading supplier o PV solar panels and glass, active in the region, andthe opportunities or using printing technology toproduce thin flm material PV absorber levels hasan obvious link to PETEC at NETPark. We’ve come a long way since the earliest PV devicesin the late nineteenth century could only achieve 1%efciency.But in order to be able to embed solar powercapabilities into windows, walls and roos and toexploit all the other commercial applications o PV,continued innovation and investment will be crucial. As you’ll see rom the pages o NETWorks, theregion is putting the inrastructure in place toensure that the north east can show the world theway orward.
Stewart WatkinsManaging Director, County Durham Development Company (CDDC)
CDDC, which encourages innovation and strategic investment on behal o Durham County Council, isdriving the development o the North East Technology Park (NETPark) and the virtual business supportenvironment NETPark Net.