Funding challenge to support business transition towards net zero

Reaching Net Zero

Funding challenge to support business transition towards net zero

The UK Government has recently announced that businesses are eligible to apply for a share of a £15 million fund to accelerate green economic recovery in regards to transport, energy and industrial sectors. The UK intends to position clean technologies at the core of economic recovery from the pandemic. 

The nation views the manufacturing of power electronics, machine systems and drives (PEMD) across all industries as a considerable growth opportunity for UK businesses. Zero emission vehicle technology is also viewed as a critical part of the UK’s plans to reach its carbon reduction goals. The government has implemented an £80 million Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund – Driving the Electric Revolution Challenge focused on supporting businesses meeting these requirements. The challenge will drive the UK’s potential to reach its targets and focus on the delivery of innovative electric vehicles, smart grids and other clean energy infrastructure required to meet their net zero targets. 

InnovateUK has £15 million investment in collaboration with Driving the Electric Revolution and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) to manage business research into supply chain development and manufacturing opportunities for PEMD in multiple industries. The funding challenge is divided into two individual sections.

Dr Will Drury, Challenge Director for Driving the Electric Revolution explained that the competition provides an exciting opportunity for UK companies to collaborate with Driving the Electric Revolution and work on innovative ideas to accelerate clean growth across multiple industries.  Drury states that Driving the Electric Revolution will support new economic growth opportunities and enable the UK to position itself to deliver and meet the supply chains of the future.

Section 1: Projects to develop PEMD supply chain enhancements

Approximately £5 million will be available to support projects that intend to improve the supply chain for power electronics, machines and drives. Businesses can work on one or more of the following:

Manufacturing process development such as enhancing productivity, adding new tools, automating services.

Manufacture design, redesigning products to improve production efficiency, modelling improvements etc.

Circular economy approach including enhancing processes for recycling and material recovery, carbon analysis, waste reduction and overall energy efficiency of processes.

New testing and validation processes, enhancing automation and virtual product validation.

The challenge will remain open and accept applications up until 11 am on the 29th of July 2020. It is open to all businesses but must show they are working with at least one other organisation. The government expects projects to vary in size between £100,000 to £500,000 and run for a period of between 3 and 9 months.

Section 2: Work to focus on zero or very low emissions

Approximately £10 million will be available to support feasibility studies, research and development projects focusing on creating new technologies for zero emission or very low emission vehicles. Projects working electric vehicle charging infrastructure will also be applicable for support.

The projects will have to show they are working on previous research or feasibility studies. The work could include:

Battery technology, electrification of powertrains, hybrid technology, new systems to improve the efficiency of large transport networks, hydrogen technologies, EV charging infrastructure and grid services.

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