I started my journey with EIT InnoEnergy Master School in 2021. My programme has KTH Royal Institute of Technology as host option for the first-year students, which meant us moving to Stockholm to live the Scandinavian academic and daily lifestyle. During this time, I got in touch with companies of the energy sector, EIT InnoEnergy shareholders and portfolio companies amongst them, through the university events and visits organised by the programme or by EIT InnoEnergy CommUnity.
Lectures at KTH start at the end of August and the exams of the first quarter take place in the second half of October. Most of our courses do not have evaluations in the first quarter. We have assignments but we do not need to be physically in campus. So, the programme organises 1-week trip European modules called SENSE (Master’s in Smart Electrical Networks and Systems) Autumn School to visit two of the universities that we get as alternatives for our second year: Grenoble INP-Ense 3 in Grenoble, France and Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) in Barcelona, Spain.
The first stop was in Grenoble, we explored the school and got lectures related to smart grids. After that, we visited IntenCity: Schneider Electric’s flagship building located in the Scientific Polygon of Grenoble. This energy autonomous building is equipped with photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, on-site energy storage and building software solutions developed by Schneider Electric. Through a microgrid partnership, this energy is also shared with neighboring buildings and the city of Grenoble. We had a tour around the installations and even got contacts to connect with for potential future opportunities.
During my second semester, in March, EIT InnoEnergy CommUnity organised an industrial visit to Corpower Oceans AB, located in Stockholm. This company is supported by EIT innoEnergy since 2012 when it joined its accelerator programme. Last yeary they launched their first commercial scale C4 Wave Energy Converter. This visit was open to all EIT InnoEnergy students at KTH, and it was the perfect opportunity to learn about ocean energy, a renewable energy source with huge potential.
The tour around the installations started with a presentation about the company and their technology. Afterwards, we went to their workshop where they had one of their huge buoys that was in development. Our guides explained the process, answered the visitors’ questions and we could chat with them informally by the end. Job opportunities were also mentioned and discussed; at that moment a MSc in Sustainable Energy Systems student was already an intern working with them.
Every year, at the end of May, the ‘SENSE Meet’ takes place in Stockholm for a weekend. During this time, the MSc in Smart Electrical Networks and Systems candidates of Year 1 and 2 gather for the first time and have activities together. First couple of days, seniors present their thesis work, and the first years present their industrial project. Next, we took a day to make a study visit to the Hitachi Energy plant located in Ludvika, 220km from Stockholm; this facility is the core site of Hitachi Energy and works with HVDC world-class technologies.
We went together with our programme director and some other students. We had a tour around Hitachi’s workshop after a couple of presentations about the company and the kind of projects they work with. They have been operating for more than 120 years; designing, producing, and delivering power transformers and shunt reactors for high voltage power grids. Our guides mentioned their high interest in hiring people with our formation; currently one of my batchmates is doing his master thesis project there.
And this was all during my first year! I remember it being busy but also very rewarding because of all the different activities that EIT InnoEnergy and KTH prepare for the students. Company visits provided direct interaction with industry that we are interested in working with. I was happy to see part of the options I have as future energy engineer.
by Silvia Adriana León Cruz, EIT InnoEnergy alumna