PICUREP PROJECT (2018, 2019, 2020, 2021)

The Ministry of Science Innovation and Universities gave the research project Development of ecological repellents, polymer formulations and effective diffusers against red stilts: PicuRep the following aid in euros: Financial budget 550.414.82, Grant 141.705.97, Loan 263.695.00, ERDF Refundable Advance 53.952.37, corresponding to the 2017 Challenges-Collaboration call. in this project participate: the ASSOCIATION ESTACION PHOENIX (which will receive a grant of 87,753.60 euros spread over three years), the companies OPENNATUR SL, PROTOQSAR 2000 SL and XENOBIOTICS SL, as well as ITE- UNIVERSIDAD POLITECNICA DE VALENCIA.

  • The objectives of this project are, step by step:
  • (a) apply state-of-the-art computational technologies to select compounds that are not only effective repellents, but also have adequate physical-chemical characteristics to ensure their safety to the environment.
  • (b) develop new polymers adapted for the impregnation of repellents in such a way as to allow controlled release of the repellents. This will be an essential aspect of the project for the maintenance of the repellent activity for as long as possible.
  • c) design of the diffusers suitable for the arrangement inside of the new compounds (polymers and repellents) and their implementation in palm grove areas for protection.
  • d) experimental validation of the new compounds and the corresponding diffusers, both in laboratory/semi-field and in narrowed palm plots for the study, allowing to determine the environmental efficiency and respect pursued. The result will mean an economy of time and money compared to traditional techniques of indiscriminate testing of new products.
  • At the completion of the project we will obtain several products with activity as repellents against the red and environmentally innocuous, with which we hope to meet the requirements established at the regulatory level and move to the commercialization phase of those that are considered as more interesting for their efficiency, ease of obtaining and / or cost of acquisition or production. The market for red-breasted repellents is currently unexplored, so any novel product in this field will have a high potential for exploitation. The products(s) we obtain and demonstrate efficacy and safety shall be protected by the relevant patents enabling their protection and commercial exploitation.

PALMWATCH PROJECT (2019, 2020, 2021)

The Red Palm Weevil Infection Detection with remote sensing research project, with a total budget of 300,285 euros, has obtained a grant of 250,285 euros from BELSPO FEDERAL SCIENCE POLICY, within the Belgian call RESEARCH PROGRAMME FOR EARTH OBSERVATION STEREO III, (SUPPORT TO EXPLOITATION AND RESEARCH IN EARTH OBSERVATION) CALL FOR PROPOSALS 2018.

This is a spin off project involving: the Belgian research institute VITO (Vlaamse Instelling voor Technologisch Onderzoek, NV), Wageningen University, Department of Environmental Science of the Netherlands and the ASSOCIATION STATION •


  • For PalmWatch, we will make an evaluation of the current remote sensing technologies, both airborne and spaceborne, for the monitoring of RPW infestations. We will build on existing expertise acquired from projects such as the recently ended Stereo III Hypertemp project (temporal monitoring of tree vitality/productivity in orchards), the DateGis project and the ongoing H2020 project on Pine Wilt Disease monitoring in Portugal.
  • An evaluation will be made on the need of high temporal resolution to monitor the development of the disease over time, the spatial resolution to monitor individual trees and even leaves in detail, as well as the spectral resolution to distinguish RPW from other biotic and abiotic stressors. This will result in unprecedented datasets on the temporal changes of the palm tree physiological status and structural inherent characteristics to RPW infestation.  An innovative RS monitoring system will be set-up for a non destructive, effective detection of RPW infestations, bearing in mind an operational service resulting from this project. •