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New knowledge and technologies


Specific challenge: The technologies that will form the backbone of the energy system by 2030 and 2050 are still under development. Promising technologies for energy conversion are being developed at laboratory scale and need to be scaled up in order to demonstrate their potential value in our future energy system. These new technologies should provide more flexibility to the energy system and could help adapting to changing climatic conditions. New knowledge and more efficient and cost-competitive energy technologies, including their supply chains, are required for the long run. It is crucial that these new technologies show evidence of promising developments and do not represent a risk to society. Developments in sectors other than energy may provide ideas, experiences, technology contributions, knowledge, new approaches, innovative materials and skills that are of relevance to the energy sector. Cross-fertilisation could therefore offer mutually beneficial effects.

Scope: Activities will focus on accelerating the development of transformative energy technologies or enabling technologies that have reached TRL2 (please see part G of the General Annexes). The proposals should bring the proposed technology solutions from TRL 2 to TRL 3-4. A multidisciplinary approach bringing expertise from different scientific disciplines and/or different technological sectors (other than energy or within different areas of energy), in order to cross traditional boundaries is expected to bring forward these game-changer technologies. Innovative solutions and their supply chains such as materials and advanced manufacturing will also be supported as long as the application is clearly energy. New approaches to existing technologies with potential for significant improvements in the overall performance are also allowed. Activities should also focus on the early identification and clarification of potential problems (for example environmental, resource efficiency and safety issues), or concerns to society, and on the definition of a targeted and quantified development roadmap. Proposals should also indicate the current Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL, see Annex to this work programme) and the activities needed to keep the MRL aligned with the future advances in the TRL of the technology solution proposed to ensure the potential for exploitation.

Novel technology solutions for grid integration, storage – other than integral to the technology solution developed, fuel cells and hydrogen, energy efficiency and smart cities will not be supported under this topic but in the relevant parts of this work programme.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 2 to 4 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected impact: The results are expected to move the technology to higher TRL and to provide better scientific understanding and guidance enabling the players concerned (e.g. policy makers, regulatory authorities, industry, interest groups representing civil society) to frame strategic choices concerning future energy technologies and to integrate them in the future energy system. It is also expected that new, out-of-the-box or advanced innovative ideas will emerge that will provide new impetus to technology pathways, to new solutions, and to new contributions to the energy challenge in Europe or worldwide.

Type of action: Research & Innovation Actions

The conditions related to this topic are provided at the end of this call and in the General Annexes.