The EIC Transition is one of the instruments of the European Innovation Council Work Programme, part of Horizon Europe. Single applicants (SMEs, spin-offs, start-ups, research organizations, universities or consortia of max. 5 partners are eligible for EIC Transition.
EIC Transition requirements
The project must build on the results from Pathfinder or ERC Proof of Concept projects, either by including participants of those projects or by showing that you have access to the IP or have the rights to develop the technology further. In general a Transition project aims to validate and demonstrate technology (in an application-relevant environment) and develop its market readiness. EIC Transition supports the maturation and validation of your novel technology in the lab and in relevant application environments (by making use of prototyping, formulation, models, user testing or other validation tests), as well as the development of a business case and business model towards the innovation’s future commercialization.
The expected result of a Transition project is that the applicant(s) should be ready for the next stage, which can be to: apply for EIC Accelerator (for SMEs, including start-ups or spin-offs), seek other investors or sources of funding, enter licensing or collaboration agreements with third parties, or utilize other routes to market deployment. Additionally, projects funded through EIC Transition are eligible to submit an EIC Accelerator proposal via the Fast Track scheme.
The program is divided over two different types of calls, the Open call and the Challenges. The EIC Transition Open call is open to any type of technology and research area, while the EIC Transition Challenges cover 2 specific areas. Both call types share the following:
Open & Challenge driven topic
- Deadline: 22 September 2021. After full proposal stage interview rounds will be held.
- Subsidy: up to € 2.5 M.
- Funding rate: 100%
- Consortium: single applicants (SMEs, spin-offs, universities) are eligible to apply or in small consortium, including 2-5 partners from both academia and industry. Applications must build on the results from a previous FET, Pathfinder or ERC Proof of Concept Project.
- Scope: If a project previously received a EIC Pathfinder, a FET Flagship or a ERC Proof of Concept, and the goal is to go beyond the proof principle, then the EIC Transition is the solution. The Transition programmes aims at maturing both the technology and business idea to increase its technology (TRL 5 to 6) and market readiness and to prepare towards commercialization of the innovation. By the end of the EIC Transition, the members of the project could decide to apply for a EIC Accelerator, look for investors, other source of funding or consider third party agreements, or spin-out to a new company.
EIC Transition Challenges
The EIC Transition Challenges have a top-down approach with a specific topic, aiming at pushing forward ground-breaking innovations with a clear perspective towards market uptake for specific applications. The EIC Transition open call eligibility criteria and conditions also apply to the EIC Transition Challenges, including the €2.5M max subsidy amount and 22 September 2021 deadline.
1. Medical Technology and devices: from lab to patient
Transitioning medical technologies and devices from a proof-of-concept result to clinical evaluation poses significant technical, financial, business and operational challenges to innovators in the field. Common hurdles or innovations to be taken into consideration include: electronics, software, materials, ICT system operating environments and processes compliant with safety standards and suitable for future manufacturing with appropriate quality levels. Additionally, thorough safety and efficacy validation in a clinical setting is necessary to advance the technology towards regulatory compliance, to determine the potential of the technology with clinicians and patients, and to motivate private-sector involvement.
Proposals submitted to this call can target any technology addressing important health needs in the direct clinical treatment and care of patients. A non-exhaustive list of illustrative examples includes: infectious and respiratory disease management, brain or nerve monitoring and stimulation technologies, high-tech endoscopes and smart catheters, surgical robots, perinatal support technology, radically portable dialysis, artificial pancreas for diabetes control, minimally invasive heart surgery, portable PET and MRI, drug delivery/eluting biomaterials, etc.
Specific conditions for this challenge
Proposals submitted to this transition challenge call should aim to:
- Perform the necessary R&D to advance from an existing proof-of-principle technology to a mature version ready to initiate clinical evaluation.
- Develop an exploitation strategy, qualitatively and quantitatively outlining the proposed path to patient and describing an investable proposition.
The starting point in the project should be a preliminary prototype of a medical device or technology that demonstrates, in a lab or preclinical context, the essential features that underpin the disruptive nature of the innovation (TRL 3-4). The endpoint deliverable in the project should be a completely functional version of the technology suitable in its end-of-project state for clinical validation (TRL 5-6), supported by a sound and implementable exploitation strategy.
2. Energy harvesting and storage technologies
Efficient, sustainable, high density and low cost energy storage technologies are a key to enable increasingly high penetration of intermittent renewable energies. Energy storage facilitates cross-sectoral coupling, integration of multiple energy vectors, and is a key asset for active demand response strategies and development of smart energy communities with end-user engagement. In order to maximally benefit from these harvesting and storage technologies, a systems approach is needed that combines harvesting and storage or that integrates a specific storage technology into a comprehensive application-specific solution.
The proposals are expected to develop energy storage technologies or combined energy harvesting/storage technologies ready for investment and business development, with the perspective to capture specific systems integration opportunities.
Some non-exhaustive and illustrative examples of energy storage technologies integration for stationary applications are the retrofit of fossil power plants, waste heat recovery, demand response and strategies for enhanced flexibility and stability of energy systems, buildings or industrial processes integration.
Proposals are expected to address at least one of the following:
- Innovative technologies and systems combining energy harvesting and storage, which are efficient, clean, high energy density and low-cost, integrated for stationary or mobile applications.
- Innovative concepts and techniques for the combined harvesting and storage of solar energy (in the form of heat or solar fuels), geothermal or waste heat, including topics such as long-term thermal storage, cooling and cryogenic storage, building integrated solutions, thermo-electricity, advanced heat transfer, power to heat to power, and thermomechanical energy storage and conversion
- Advanced materials and devices for electro-chemical storage (other than Li-Ion batteries), at utility scale, mobile or distributed/micro scale level, also integrated to PV/wind energy systems or for other intermittent sources. Concepts that offer the potentials for high flexibility, high energy density, efficiency, low-cost, made of toxic-free and non-critical raw materials, should be harnessed to make them usable for specific applications.
Expected results are prototypes or demonstrators operating in relevant environmental conditions, combined with a sound business plan and business model.
About the European Innovation Council (EIC) Program
Under Horizon Europe the first EIC work program will be implemented. Previously, the EIC pilot has been tested and evaluated under Horizon 2020. The EIC aims at identifying and supporting breakthrough technologies and game-changing innovations with the potential to scale up internationally and become market leaders. 70% of the entire budget is ear-marked for SMEs, which shows the focus of EIC on supporting SMEs. There are 3 subprogrammes that form the basis of the EIC program: EIC Pathfinder, EIC Transition and EIC Accelerator.
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