£11m R&D funding pot for local energy start-ups announced

Universities and science minister David Willetts unveils Tech Strategy Board cleantech competition

A major initiative to find “innovative” new ways of providing energy across the UK was announced today by minister of state for universities and science David Willetts.

Jointly funded by UK innovation agency the Technology Strategy Board and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (ESPRC), up to £11m has been made available to support collaborative research and development projects that look to bring energy generation and supply down to a local level.

With the smart energy market predicted to grow to an estimated £3-5bn by 2020, the government competition will aim to encourage entrepreneurs to develop new products, services and solutions across the energy, environment, transport and digital sectors.

Particular areas of focus for the R&D funding scheme are integrated renewable energy supplies in place of national grid reinforcements, solutions that balance energy supply and demand, and integrated electric vehicles for buildings and properties.

Universities and Science Minister, David Willetts said: “Energy and its storage is one of the eight great technologies of the future where the UK has world leading research and the potential to seize a significant share of growing global markets.

“This funding will enable innovative companies to bring their ideas into reality. This will help the UK to move to a low-carbon economy, drive growth and get ahead in the global race.”

Iain Gray, Technology Strategy Board CEO, continued:

“This funding competition is […] critical, not only in developing the individual technologies, but also in developing solutions to how technologies are integrated to deliver robust, flexible and cost-effective systems.”

The registration deadline for the ‘localised energy systems’ competition closes on March 12, click here to register.

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