Around two million euros is the amount available for EU member-countries’ companies to develop 14 technological solutions to be applied in the European electricity sector. The initiative, launched as part of a funding programme within the scope of the largest European research project to date – InterConnect – led by INESC TEC, is open until July 26. The objective is to design interoperable prototypes that support the digitalisation of the electricity sector.
The InterConnect funding programme is mainly aimed at European start-ups and SMEs. Each application will receive a maximum amount of €150K to develop the solutions. This is the first of three scheduled open calls for financing, which aim to promote innovation in the electricity sector, actively contributing to its digitalisation, as well as to the energy efficiency of homes and business buildings.
The InterConnect project brings together 50 European partners from 11 EU countries to develop tools for the interoperability between devices, systems and the energy grid. “The project also promotes the development of a digital structure that allows equipment, at homes and at industrial organisation, to communicate with service providers and grid operators to implement demand side flexibility solutions to allow consumers and producers to comfortably change their habits and to improve the energy system efficiency and resiliency, thus contributing to the energy independence that the EU aims to achieve”, explained David Rua, project coordinator and researcher at INESC TEC.
The selected applications will enter a support programme with technical experts and business mentors who will guide the proposal until its implementation and integration in the market. The European country company Funding Box leads this process and is also responsible for disseminating the results in late October.
“In November, we will start working with the 14 companies chosen during the 1st Open Call and will launch the associated 7-month support programme. During this period, we will go through three phases: firstly, the objective is to define the proof of concept; then, we will move on to the stage where companies will develop their prototypes and their business models and, as a last step, the products will be tested in a market environment using the demonstrators that are being installed at European level to test all the solutions that are being developed by the project”, said Yolanda Moreno, Project Lead at Funding Box.
Applications are open until July 26, 5 p.m. (Brussels time). All information and documentation can be found at the Open Calls Website page, as well as the required application forms.
The InterConnect project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 857237.