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Supporting the green and digital transformation of the energy ecosystem and enhancing its resilience through the development and piloting of AI-IoT Edge-cloud and platform solutions
Horizon Europe - Cluster 5 - Destination 3: Sustainable, secure and competitive energy supply
Estimated EU contribution per project
Link to the call
Link to the submission
- The action should develop solutions that aim at increasing the integration of renewable energy sources, as well as the local generation and consumption of energy and processing of data by developing and piloting at scale open source, environmentally friendly, easily upgradeable and energy-efficient cloud-edge solutions. The application space should include but is not limited to bi-directional EV charging, smart buildings and homes. Solutions are expected to be based on commonly agreed open standards. To the greatest extent possible, they should be building on the common European cloud-edge infrastructure as well as making use of and contributing to the emerging common European data spaces in the fields of energy and mobility. Further, they should support a more decentralised environment for grid flexibility and energy services, based on digital enablers such as artificial intelligence, swarm computing and IoT.
- Validation should be done at least three pilot sites in at least three Member States/Associated Countries and could include under “financial support to third parties” an open call for additional services using up to 10% of the total budget to attract further users and suppliers, in particular SMEs. The modalities of the open call will be defined by the consortium, based on the concrete needs of the project. The appropriate level of data localisation and processing (cloud, edge, far edge, etc.) should be defined on-the-fly by AI algorithms to optimise latency, energy consumption, security, and other important parameters. The solutions must demonstrate critical operation capability such as low-battery, fault tolerance, and harsh weather conditions to ensure the resilient operation.
- To ensure the interoperability among the solutions and with other European IoT research and innovation efforts in the energy and other sectors and the integration into the grid, the project will make use of operational end-to-end architectures, digital platforms and other data exchange infrastructure for the energy system being developed under ongoing EU programmes and other relevant initiatives. Preferably semantically interoperable interactions, as enabled by the ETSI SAREF ontologies, should be used. The projects will be expected to contribute to the piloting, uptake and further development of relevant standards.
- Solutions should include a credible market uptake plan of developed solutions across the EU, in as diverse types of regions and electricity grids (in terms of climate, size, economic activities), and enable 3rd parties, in particular SMEs, to use the developed solutions as a basis to build their innovative data-driven energy services innovations for energy consumers on top of the developed solution. These solutions should collaborate where relevant with the Testing and Experimentation Facility (TEF) for the energy sector.
- The selected projects are expected to contribute to the BRIDGE initiative, actively participate to its activities and allocate up to 2% of their budgets to that end. Additional contributions to the ‘Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation’ (AIOTI) and other relevant activities (e.g. clusters of digital projects and coordinating actions) might be considered, when relevant.
- Major contribution to the implementation of the Digitalisation of Energy Action plan.
- Innovation in data-driven energy services by 3rd parties through fast spreading, market uptake and validation under critical operating conditions in a real environment of transparent, accessible and reliable highly distributed open platforms, frameworks and mechanisms for data exchange and storage to support innovative services (for flexibility, RES integration, etc.) across the EU, based on Open Source developed solutions.
- Validation in a large-scale environment of the application of cutting-edge digital technology (Cloud-Edge continuum, edge intelligence, AI/ML (federated learning), IoT) in a more decentralised environment in the energy sector.
- Full set of relevant commonly agreed digital standards applicable to the energy sector through extension and update of existing standards and new standards filling standardisation gaps.
Regions / countries for funding
Moldova (Moldova), Albania (Shqipëria), Armenia (Հայաստան), Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosna i Hercegovina / Босна и Херцеговина), Faeroes (Føroyar / Færøerne), Georgia (საქართველო), Island (Ísland), Israel (ישראל / إِسْرَائِيل), Kosovo (Kosova/Kosovë / Косово), Montenegro (Црна Гора), Morocco (المغرب), North Macedonia (Северна Македонија), Norway (Norge), Serbia (Srbija/Сpбија), Tunisia (تونس /Tūnis), Türkiye, Ukraine (Україна), United Kingdom
EU Body, Education and training institution, International organization, Natural Person, Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) / Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Other, Private institution, incl. private company (private for profit), Public Body (national, regional and local; incl. EGTCs), Research Institution incl. University, Small and medium-sized enterprise (SME)
To be eligible for funding, applicants must be established in one of the following countries:
- the Member States of the European Union, including their outermost regions
- the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) linked to the Member States
- third countries associated to Horizon Europe - see list of particpating countries
Only legal entities forming a consortium are eligible to participate in actions provided that the consortium includes, as beneficiaries, three legal entities independent from each other and each established in a different country as follows:
- at least one independent legal entity established in a Member State; and
- at least two other independent legal entities, each established in different Member States or Associated Countries.
Any legal entity, regardless of its place of establishment, including legal entities from non-associated third countries or international organisations (including international European research organisations) is eligible to participate (whether it is eligible for funding or not), provided that the conditions laid down in the Horizon Europe Regulation have been met, along with any other conditions laid down in the specific call topic.
A ‘legal entity’ means any natural or legal person created and recognised as such under national law, EU law or international law, which has legal personality and which may, acting in its own name, exercise rights and be subject to obligations, or an entity without legal personality.
- Affiliated entities — Affiliated entities (i.e. entities with a legal or capital link to a beneficiary which participate in the action with similar rights and obligations to the beneficiaries, but which do not sign the grant agreement and therefore do not become beneficiaries themselves) are allowed, if they are eligible for participation and funding.
- Associated partners — Associated partners (i.e. entities which participate in the action without signing the grant agreement, and without the right to charge costs or claim contributions) are allowed, subject to any conditions regarding associated partners set out in the specific call conditions.
- Entities without legal personality — Entities which do not have legal personality under their national law may exceptionally participate, provided that their representatives have the capacity to undertake legal obligations on their behalf, and offer guarantees to protect the EU’s financial interests equivalent to those offered by legal persons.
- EU bodies — Legal entities created under EU law including decentralised agencies may be part of the consortium, unless provided for otherwise in their basic act.
- Joint Research Centre (‘JRC’)— Where provided for in the specific call conditions, applicants may include in their proposals the possible contribution of the JRC but the JRC will not participate in the preparation and submission of the proposal. Applicants will indicate the contribution that the JRC could bring to the project based on the scope of the topic text. After the evaluation process, the JRC and the consortium selected for funding may come to an agreement on the specific terms of the participation of the JRC. If an agreement is found, the JRC may accede to the grant agreement as beneficiary requesting zero funding or participate as an associated partner, and would accede to the consortium as a member.
- Associations and interest groupings — Entities composed of members (e.g. European research infrastructure consortia (ERICs)) may participate as ‘sole beneficiaries’ or ‘beneficiaries without legal personality’. However, if the action is in practice implemented by the individual members, those members should also participate (either as beneficiaries or as affiliated entities, otherwise their costs will NOT be eligible.
other eligibility criteria
Activities are expected to achieve TRL 7-8 for digital energy solutions by the end of the project starting from general purpose digital solutions of at least TRL 5-6.
For the Technology Readiness Level (TRL), the following definitions apply:
- TRL 1 — Basic principles observed
- TRL 2 — Technology concept formulated
- TRL 3 — Experimental proof of concept
- TRL 4 — Technology validated in a lab
- TRL 5 — Technology validated in a relevant environment (industrially relevant environment in the case of key enabling technologies)
- TRL 6 — Technology demonstrated in a relevant environment (industrially relevant environment in the case of key enabling technologies)
- TRL 7 — System prototype demonstration in an operational environment
- TRL 8 — System complete and qualified
- TRL 9 — Actual system proven in an operational environment (competitive manufacturing in the case of key enabling technologies, or in space)
If projects use satellite-based earth observation, positioning, navigation and/or related timing data and services, beneficiaries must make use of Copernicus and/or Galileo/EGNOS (other data and services may additionally be used).
Relevance for EU Macro-Region
EUSAIR - EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region, EUSALP - EU Strategy for the Alpine Space, EUSBSR - EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, EUSDR - EU Strategy for the Danube Region
UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs)
All proposals must be submitted electronically via the Funders & Tenders Portal electronic submission system (accessible via the topic page in the Search Funding & Tenders section). Paper submissions are NOT possible.
Proposals must be complete and contain all parts and mandatory annexes and supporting documents, e.g. plan for the exploitation and dissemination of the results including communication activities, etc.
The application form will have two parts:
- Part A (to be filled in directly online) contains administrative information about the applicant organisations (future coordinator and beneficiaries and affiliated entities), the summarised budget for the proposal and call-specific questions;
- Part B (to be downloaded from the Portal submission system, completed and then assembled and re-uploaded as a PDF in the system) contains the technical description of the project.
Annexes and supporting documents will be directly available in the submission system and must be uploaded as PDF files (or other formats allowed by the system).
The limit for a full application (Part B) is 45 pages.