Grant information


open now    Opened: 23 May 2022   |   Closes: 17 August 2022

Description

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £25 million in innovation projects across the two strands of this competition. This funding is from the Faraday Battery Challenge (FBC).

The aim of this competition is to:

  • support business-led research and development of sustainable propulsion batteries
  • support technologies with the potential to enter the automotive market within the next 10 years and, where appropriate, allow for early or synergistic entry into other sectors
  • move UK battery innovations from technological potential towards commercial capability
  • develop and secure material and manufacturing supply chains for battery technologies in the UK

 

This competition is split into 2 strands:

Feasibility studies:

  • will draw on the most exciting, high potential impact, early-stage research where a feasibility study of less than 12 months, can catalyse the route to commercialisation
  • will support short term focused projects which could open avenues for overcoming big challenges in manufacturing or other critical processes for advancing the technology

Your proposal must clearly show how this feasibility study has the potential to accelerate the development of technologies or business practices which could significantly advance the performance characteristics of batteries for electric vehicles.​

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are entering the appropriate strand of the competition for your project.

You will not be able to transfer your application to the other strand, it will not be sent for assessment if it is out of scope.

In applying to this competition, you are entering into a competitive process. This competition closes at 11am UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding Type

Grant

Project size

Your total project costs must be between £100,000 and £750,000.

Who can apply

Your project

Your project must:

  • have total costs between £100,000 to £750,000
  • start by 1 January 2023
  • end by 31 December 2023
  • last up to 12 months
  • carry out all of its project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK

You must only include eligible project costs in your application.

 

Under current restrictions, this competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian entity as lead, partner or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian source.

Lead organisation

To lead a project your organisation must:

 

Academic institutions, RTOs, charities, not for profit or public sector organisations cannot lead or work alone.

Project team

To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

  • business of any size
  • academic institution
  • charity
  • not for profit
  • public sector organisation
  • research and technology organisation (RTO)

 

Each partner organisation must be invited into the Innovation Funding Service by the lead to collaborate on a project. Once accepted, partners will be asked to login or to create an account and enter their own project costs into the Innovation Funding Service.

 

The lead and at least one other organisation must claim funding by entering their costs during the application.

 

Your project can include partners that do not receive any of this competition’s funding, for example non-UK businesses. Their costs will count towards the total project costs.

 

Subcontractors

Subcontractors are allowed in this competition.

Subcontractors can be from anywhere in the UK and you must select them through your usual procurement process.

You can use subcontractors from overseas but must make the case in your application as to why you could not use suppliers from the UK.

You must provide a detailed rationale, evidence of the potential UK contractors you approached and the reasons why they were unable to work with you. Innovate UK will not accept a cheaper cost as a sufficient reason to use an overseas subcontractor.

All subcontractor costs must be justified and appropriate to the total project costs.

 

Number of applications

A UK registered business, can lead and be included as a collaborator on any number of applications.

An academic institution, RTO, charity, not for profit or public sector organisation can collaborate on any number of applications.

Previous Application

You can use a previously submitted application to apply for this competition.

Innovate UK will not award you funding if you have:

Subsidy control (and State aid where applicable)

This competition provides funding in line with the UK's obligations and commitments to Subsidy Control. Further information about the UK Subsidy Control requirements can be found within the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation agreement and the subsequent guidance from the department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Innovate UK is unable to award organisations that are considered to be in financial difficulty. Innovate UK will conduct financial viability and eligibility tests to confirm this is not the case following the application stage.

EU State aid rules now only apply in limited circumstances. Please see Innovate UK's general guidance to check if these rules apply to your organisation.

 

Further Information

If you are unsure about your obligations under the UK Subsidy Control regime or the State aid rules, you should take independent legal advice. Innovate UK is unable to advise on individual eligibility or legal obligations.

You must at all times make sure that the funding awarded to you is compliant with all current Subsidy Control legislation applicable in the United Kingdom.
This aims to regulate any advantage granted by a public sector body which threatens to, or actually distorts competition in the United Kingdom or any other country or countries.

If there are any changes to the above requirements that mean Innovate UK needs to change the terms of this competition, they will tell you as soon as possible.

Funding

Up to £25 million has been allocated to fund innovation projects in this competition across both strands:

Up to £2 million has been allocated for this feasibility studies strand.

Innovate UK reserves the right to take a portfolio approach for funding across the two strands.

Funding will be in the form of a grant.

If the majority of your organisation’s work on the project is commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically.

For feasibility studies, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 70% if you are a micro or small organisation
  • up to 60% if you are a medium sized organisation
  • up to 50% if you are a large organisation

For more information on company sizes, please refer to the company accounts guidance. This is a change from the EU definition unless you are applying under State aid.

If you are applying for an award funded under State aid Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.

Research participation

The research organisations undertaking non-economic activity as part of the project can share up to 50% of the total eligible project costs. If your consortium contains more than one research organisation undertaking non-economic activity, this maximum is shared between them.

Of that 50% you could get funding for your eligible project costs of up to:

  • 80% of full economic costs (FEC) if you are a Je-S registered institution such as an academic
  • 100% of your project costs if you are an RTO, charity, not for profit organisation, public sector organisation or research organisation

Scope

Your proposal

The Faraday Battery Challenge (FBC) aims to:

  • ensure the UK automotive sector meets its net zero commitments in the required timescale, by enabling the development and scale-up of sustainable battery technologies
  • ensure the UK prospers from a just and fair transition to electrification, by taking action to develop a world class intellectual and physical supply chain for batteries in the UK

The aims of this competition are to:

  • support business-led research and development of sustainable propulsion batteries
  • support technologies with the potential to enter the automotive market within the next 10 years and, where appropriate, allow for early or cooperative entry into other sectors
  • move UK battery innovations from technological potential towards commercial capability
  • develop and secure material and manufacturing supply chains for battery technologies in the UK

Technoeconomic research carried out in collaboration with the FBC, indicates that batteries for transport electrification can generally be classified into the following cross sector cell level performance clusters:

  • power focused, weight sensitive
  • power focused, cost sensitive
  • energy focused, cost sensitive
  • energy focused, weight and power sensitive

Projects must balance specific technical, market and business requirements for developing and emerging technologies and enable UK competitiveness across the battery value chain.

Innovate UK is particularly interested in projects that are focused on the following:

  • high power and high energy density, where safety can enable high performance applications
  • low cost and lower energy density technologies with lower reliance on critical minerals such as Cobalt and Nickel
  • technologies enabling high cycle life
  • technologies developing sustainable batteries, for example, which improve resource efficiency, reduce energy intensity of processes or increase recyclability
  • building and securing the UK supply chain
  • development of more efficient and globally competitive manufacturing processes

Your project can achieve these through a combination of innovations in process improvement, cell chemistry, cell-to-pack efficiency and novel design concepts. Innovate UK expects successful projects to increase productivity, competitiveness and growth for UK businesses.

Innovate UK wants to fund a variety of projects across the propulsion battery value chain and different technologies. Innovate UK will apply a portfolio approach across the two strands of the competition.

Specific themes

Your project must focus on:

  • extraction and processing of raw materials
  • development and manufacture of cell materials and components
  • design and manufacture of novel cell, module and pack concepts
  • end of life and recycling technologies
  • development of the UK battery supply chain
  • enabling physical and digital technologies which support the design, development, optimisation and deployment of propulsion batteries

Where project activities require:

  • an Environmental Permit (England and Wales)
  • Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (Scotland and Northern Ireland) Permit
  • a Waste Management Licence (Scotland and Northern Ireland)
  • you to comply with the Waste Battery and Accumulator Regulations (UK)

Projects must provide proof of compliance to the satisfaction of Innovate UK as part of UK Research and Innovation to enable an application to be successful.

This may include (but is not restricted to):

  • a valid permit
  • a valid licence
  • an approved battery treatment operator (ABTO) status details
  • an agreed regulatory position statement or definition of waste opinion

by either the Environment Agency, Natural Resources Wales, the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency or Northern Ireland Environment Agency

Further information can be found here:

Check if you need an environmental permit - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Environmental management : Environmental permits - detailed information - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Get an opinion from the definition of waste service - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Research categories

Innovate UK will fund industrial research projects, as defined in the guidance on categories of research.
 

Projects that will not be funded

Innovate UK is not funding projects that are:

  • fundamental research projects or projects which are academic intensive
  • business as usual
  • non-collaborative
  • aiming to secure funding for capital equipment as a primary focus
  • not giving due consideration to the cost, market and business requirements of the technology
  • not demonstrating a viable route to entry into the automotive market within an approximate 10 year timeframe
  • focusing on physical integration of battery technologies into vehicles
  • dependent on export performance, for example giving a subsidy to a baker on the condition that it exports a certain quantity of bread to another country
  • dependent on domestic inputs usage, for example giving a subsidy to a baker on the condition that it uses 50% UK flour in their product

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