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The world energy demand increases, this has been the prevailing trend for many years. Developed countries, now responsible for two-third of the global energy use, are still increasing their demand. Energy efficiency improvement is one of the key strategies to achieve greater sustainability of the energy system. However, the potential for energy efficiency improvement is much larger than what has already been implemented. Energy efficiency is inherent to innovation but historically the rate is low. New and innovative energy efficient micro- and nanotechnology solutions can offer great opportunities but there is a need to incorporate these in today's energy systems in order to exploit the potential.
Nordic Innovation Centre, NICe, launched its first Micro- and Nanotechnology programme MINT I in spring 2006, followed by the MINT II programme in year 2007. Through the MINT II programme, NICe collaborated with MNT ERA-Net, the Network for European funding programmes for micro- and nanotechnologies (MNT). The aim was to boost Nordic activities on a European level, and to provide Nordic consortia access to European partners.
NICe is now launching its third programme within micro- and nanotechnology, MINT III. The programme is launched in cooperation with MNT ERA-Net and the aim is to be a gateway for Nordic actors to cooperate with European partners within the field of micro- and nanotechnology and energy efficiency.
Deadline for pre-proposals May 6th at 12:00 CET
Gateway for Nordic actors
MNT ERA-Net is the network of European funding programmes for micro- and nanotechnologies. The aim of MNT ERA-Net is to make regional and national funding programmes accessible to transnational consortia.
Nordic Innovation Centre (NICe) is participating as a regional funding organisation in the MNT ERA-Net transnational call 2009. This opens for participation from all the Nordic countries in this European call. Nordic actors, who do not have a national funding programme participating in MNT ERA-Net, will especially benefit from the participation of the Nordic MINT III programme in the MNT ERA-NET call, as this allows them to be eligible for funding in the European call.
Nordic MINT III
The following definition of innovation is the primary corner stone of any project funded by NICe:
"Innovation is a product, a service, a process or an organizational form that creates economical success or other societal value through market acceptance. A research result or an invention can only be an innovation through interaction with commercial actors".
It will be crucial for successful Nordic MINT III applicants to yield concrete results and plan for implementation of energy effective micro- and nanotechnology innovations, relevant in both Nordic and international contexts.
The results of the Nordic MINT III programme are expected to serve public and private bodies on a national and/or regional level in both the Nordic countries and the rest of Europe.
Scope and topics of the Nordic MINT III call
Projects funded within the Nordic MINT III programme shall both demonstrate considerable impact on energy efficiency and prove good potential for commercial success:
Capitalise on existing research and investments in technology and systems
Form essential links between industry research and the end-user; product consumer or technology exploiter (B2B, B2C and/or B2R cooperation, public/private)
Emphasise a holistic approach on the energy efficiency problem
Develop and/or implement more energy efficient value products and/or services
Through the Nordic MINT III programme, NICe will fund project with the aim to commercialise/implement energy effective and mature micro- and nanotechnology applications within among others:
Surface treatment technology
Within the above listed technology areas, we especially want to target following application areas to demonstrate new ways of achieving energy efficiency:
Buildings account for around 40% of European energy consumption and therefore offer the largest potential for energy savings. New legislations and requirements require better energy performance of new and existing houses. There is a huge future demand for more energy efficient technologies and services related to both new buildings and renovation. Promotion of innovative building technologies and materials and technologies for lighting, heating, cooling and ventilation is essential in order to change today's pattern of energy use. To meet this demand, micro- and nanotechnology can play an important role. With markets, technology and policy initiatives pulling and pushing implementation of new and energy efficient technologies, cooperation of all stakeholder and a holistic approach is essential in order to succeed. The public sector is important since the largest part of European buildings is publicly owned. Therefore, participants representing the public sector can be key actors for implementation of new and energy efficient micro- and nanotechnology.
Over 50% of oil consumption and green house emission in the world are related to transport. Therefore, the transport sector is a key element in strategies for energy efficiency and climate change. There is a huge demand for new and innovative energy efficient solutions to implement. Micro- and nanotechnology application enhancing energy efficiency as part of the power generation or monitoring of energy use in transport can make a difference. Cooperation between different stakeholders and disciplines is needed in order to succeed. Transport on land and sea is emphasised in this programme.
Energy production, transport and storage
Energy can be produced by several different production processes. One common factor in all cases is the need to transport and store energy when supply is greater than demand. New micro- and nanotechnologies and materials are being developed that can enhance efficiency in energy production, transport and storage. The challenge is to implement this knowledge and technology in existing systems and to design new ones.
Energy intensive industry
The industry sector plays a major role when considering the goal of 20% energy savings by 2020. Application of new and more energy efficient technologies in this sector is essential. Micro- and nanotechnology can contribute to energy efficiency as part of product, process or service development or monitoring. Involvement of the industry as customer/end user is an important success factor.
Eligibility criteria for funding through NICe in the MNT ERA-Net call
Criteria on project:
The overall project objectives comply with the Nordic MINT III objectives as described in this document
Fulfil general project criteria for NICe (see below)
Project prioritisation will be influenced by the projects' ability to demonstrate the potential for exploiting and capitalising on existing research and technology in a successful way. Can this be enhanced by benefiting from trans-European cooperation it will be considered to give the project a high added value.
Criteria on consortium
Project consortia must include:
Partners applying for funding from minimum two MNT ERA-Net funding agencies (see list of funders on www.mnt-era.net )
Partners from at least three Nordic countries
Substantial participation from industry/business sector
Participation from Non-Nordic partner(s) and public/private end users/consumer is encouraged. This will influence the project prioritisation.
Participants from all Nordic countries may apply for funding from NICe.
In addition to funding from NICe the Finnish partners may apply for funding from Tekes (www.mnt-era.net/call2009/participants/finland). Swedish partners may apply for funding from Vinnova (www.mnt-era.net/call2009/participants/sweden) or from Energimyndigheten (energimyndigheten.se/sv/Om-oss/Utlysningar).
Each Nordic partner may only apply for funding from one Nordic funding organisation.
General project criteria
In addition to the specific scope for the call, mentioned above, proposals are evaluated against the following general criteria:
Quality of consortium and management
Budget and timeframes
Maximum length of projects: 2 years
Maximum 50 % of total project funding from NICe.
Maximum amount granted from NICe: 3,5 MNOK
Application procedure for NICe
The call procedure will be a two-step process:
Expression of interest (EOI)/pre-proposal: One EOI per project is submitted through MNT ERA-Net online application form available at www.mnt-era.net
Full proposal: The projects with the highest evaluation score based on EOI/pre-proposal is invited to send a full proposal. Information concerning the full application process will be submitted together with the invitation.
About Nordic Innovation Centre
The Nordic Innovation Centre initiates and finances activities that enhance innovation. We cooperate primarily with small and medium sized companies in the Nordic region. We aim at developing a smoothly functioning Nordic region without national barriers. Nordic Innovation Centre is an institution under the Nordic Council of Ministers. The centre is located in Oslo, but has projects in all the Nordic countries.
For more information, please click here
Eili Vigestad Berge, +47 41 46 34 34,
Sigridur Thormodsdottir, +47 91 57 65 77,
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