Periodic Reporting for period 1 - LightCoce (Building an Ecosystem for the up-scaling of lightweight multi-functional concrete and ceramic materials and structures)
Reporting period: 2019-01-01 to 2020-06-30
The main objective of the LightCoce project is to cover the gap in the upscaling and testing of multifunctional lightweight concrete and ceramic materials by providing open access to SMEs and Industry to Pilot Lines (PLs) through a one stop shop ecosystem consisting of upgraded Pilot Lines (including three clusters of PLs; Concrete, Conventional Ceramics and Advanced Ceramics), characterisation & testing facilities, process modelling, quality assurance and monitoring, and standardisation, safety and innovation management services that will be accessible to the clients at fair conditions and cost. The ecosystem will be reached from customers through a single-entry point.
The value proposition of LightCoce is based on four main elements of high value for business and in particular SMEs, namely access to Pilot Lines and associated technology and competence (including IP and talents), access to network, access to finance and access to international markets. In this framework, the overall objective of LightCoce is to create the European wide reference network of PLs for the development, expertise, technology validation facilities and transfer services to industry and SMEs for advanced materials applications ranging from constructions materials, and infrastructures, to high tech applications in automotive and aerospace industry.
Several challenges of the targeted markets are difficult to be cost-effectively addressed without advanced materials, taking into account also the lightweight and durability dimensions and the disruption to business. The validation of viable solutions in full scale within the project will allow to set-up effective demonstrators which are key in conservative sectors. This will create awareness in industry and society and will initiate a virtuous loop which may ultimately trigger market take-up.
Additionally, the administrative and operational activities towards the setup of the LightCoce ecosystem have been carried out during the whole duration of the first reporting period. The organization structure of the single entry point that will operate the LightCoce ecosystem has been specified, with the aim to provide a unique production environment, but also help end users have a holistic solution as clients, allowing them to test all aspects from properties to regulatory aspects and
from safety to dedicated business plans for the end users, all in one place. Assessment of pricing policies and investigation of additional funding sources have been initiated, while the data management plan has been developed.
Once the LightCoce ecosystem is established and ready to operate, it is expected to have the following impacts:
- Open and upgraded facilities at the EU level for the design, development, testing, safety assessment, and upscaling of lightweight, nano-enabled and multifunctional materials and components, easily accessible to users
- Attract a significant number of new SME users, with at least a 20% increase for existing test beds
- Increased access to finance for investing in these materials or in applications
- Improved industrial process parameters and faster verification of materials performance for highly promising applications
- improvement in industrial productivity, reliability, environmental performance, durability, and reduction of life-cycle costs of these materials
- Indirect reduction in energy consumption across sectors using lighter materials in their products and processes
As already mentioned, the first reporting period focused on the preparation of the LightCoce ecosystem, the operation of which will be validated, re-adjusted, if required, and demonstrated through the test cases brought by the industrial partners of the consortium (from month 22) and the new test cases that will reach the ecosystem through the open call at month 30.