Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Specific Challenge: Europe is facing fierce global competition to maintain its technological leadership in KETs. However, while Europe has excellent R&D results in individual KETs, it often fails to turn those timely into highly innovative products. In particular, Europe fails to bring stakeholders from the different KETs together around new value chains and new business collaborations. These will create value above and beyond the mere addition of individual technologies and are essential for Europe to develop multi-disciplinary technological capabilities and bring into the market new, high value-added products that are manufactured in Europe. By investing more on innovation and in particular on KET deployment projects and integration platforms as well as on KET pilot lines, in particular around micro-nano-electronics, photonics and manufacturing, there will be a direct impact on Europe's global competitiveness – in particular for the SMEs – as well as on Europe's capability to offer new solutions for some of the major societal challenges it faces.


a.      Innovation Actions

ICT-KET integrated platforms for the healthcare and food sectors: Further development and validation in real settings of reliable, low-cost micro-nano-bio and bio-photonics systems driven by users. Actions should target the health sector for early or fast diagnosis or monitoring of disease and patient status (clinical trials are excluded) or the food sector for quality, safety and process control. They should include substantiated business cases for the targeted products with strong commitment to industrialise them in Europe.

b.      Pilot lines for advanced KET products

Set-up and validation of pilot production for advanced products. Actions may include also the development of fabrication processes, process qualification, and further process engineering. They should be open access and be driven by the key stakeholders able to set-up and run such pilot lines. Proposals should also include business plans for the further industrialisation of the production processes and, if applicable, for specific planned products, with strong commitment to manufacturing in Europe[1]. Actions should address the following topics:

·         Pilot line for OLEDs on flexible substrates: Focus is on introducing volume fabrication (sheet to sheet, roll to sheet and roll to roll) of reliable OLEDs on flexible substrates with low material utilisation. Actions may include also the upgrading of current research pilot lines.

·         Pilot line for analytical mid-infrared (MIR) micro-sensors: A pilot line providing foundry services targeting in particular SME needs. Focus is on fabricating processed wafers and mounted / packaged chips for MIR micro-sensor systems addressing high-impact applications, and introducing lower-cost, more reliable and efficient MIR materials in the fabrication process. Open access should be facilitated through appropriate support services and tools, to be validated through pre-commercial pilot runs for external users.

·         Pilot line for PIC fabrication on III-V and/or dielectric based platforms providing foundry services for the fabrication of complex PICs (Photonic Integrated Circuits) based on generic fabrication processes. The foundry offer should meet in particular the needs of SMEs. Open access should be facilitated through appropriate support services and tools (e.g. design support, design kits and tools; PIC characterisation and packaging). The foundry offer should be validated through pre-commercial pilot runs for external users.

c.       Coordination and Support actions

Cooperation of scientists, technology developers and providers, and end users for accelerating the deployment of bio-photonics and micro-nano-bio solutions in the health sector.

Expected impact:

a.      Innovation actions

·         Measurable progress in the effectiveness, cost-performance and speed of medical diagnosis, the monitoring of disease and patient status, the prevention and treatment of major diseases and/or the quality controls in the food sector.

·         Wide market introduction of micro-nano-bio and bio-photonics systems for healthcare and food quality, safety and processing.

b.      Pilot lines for advanced KET products

·         Cost-performance breakthroughs for OLEDs, making OLED competitive with existing LED based solutions; for reliable MIR sensing products; or for reliable PIC fabrication.

·         Effective market introduction of new and highly competitive OLEDs and MIR sensing products.

·         Measurable productivity increase in PIC manufacturing; and, measurable new, high added-value product propositions in a wide range of photonics market segments enabled by advanced manufacturing capabilities and/or added value services in PICs.

·         Improved value creation in Europe through stronger value and supply chains involving relevant industrial stakeholders.

c.       Coordination and Support actions

·         Reinforced value chains and accelerated deployment of micro-nano-bio and bio-photonics solutions in the health sector through closer cooperation of the key stakeholders and users.

Types of action:

a.       Innovation Actions, TRL 5 and 6 (please see part G of the General Annexes) – Proposals requesting a Small contribution are expected

b.      Innovation Actions, TRLs 5-7 (please see part G of the General Annexes). Minimum one pilot line per area is expected to be selected for funding. The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 14 million each would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts

c.       Coordination and Support Actions

[1]     Wherever appropriate, actions could seek synergies and co-financing from relevant national / regional research and innovation programmes, e.g. structural funds addressing smart specialisation. Actions combining different sources of financing should include a concrete financial plan detailing the use of these funding sources for the different parts of their activities.

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