£21million has been awarded to entrepreneurs to help bring a range of new and innovative low carbon products to market, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced today.
The Energy Entrepreneurs Fund, Energy Storage competitions and Advanced Heat Storage scheme are all designed to spur on innovation in the low carbon sector, helping to support jobs and create export opportunities as well as help the UK meet its carbon targets.
Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said:
“This new investment will give these organisations the boost they need to drive forward the development of a range of innovative low carbon designs, helping cut costs and bring new technologies to market in this sector.
“Innovation is vital for the move towards a low carbon economy and it’s great to see so many entrepreneurs rising to the challenge. I wish the winners every success with their projects.”
Energy Entrepreneurs Fund
30 projects have been awarded a share of up to £16million under the first phase of DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund. The funding is part of a £35million fund announced in April 2012, and aims to support energy efficiency technologies such as building control systems, advanced lighting systems and space heating and cooling technologies, alongside power generation and energy storage technologies including fuel cells, biomass boilers and heat pumps. Winning designs range from smart energy demand controls and innovative waste management solutions, to innovative ideas for installing insulation.
Energy Storage Competitions
16 organisations have been awarded a share of £2 million to help develop innovative storage solutions for energy. Energy storage systems are designed to store electricity generated at a time of low demand to be used a later time when demand is high. Such systems have an important part to play in supporting the growth of low carbon technologies but further funding is needed to help drive forward innovation and encourage private sector investment.
The £2million includes £0.5million for 12 organisations to carry out feasibility studies into innovative and diverse energy storage ideas under the under Energy Storage Technology Demonstration Competition. It also includes £1.5million for 4 winning companies to improve components or materials used for energy storage systems and to develop feasibility studies to explore how storage systems work and how they can be used in the UK electricity network under the Energy Storage Component Research & Feasibility Study Competition.
Advanced Heat Storage
£3million has been awarded to entrepreneurs to carry out feasibility studies and demonstrate designs for innovative compact heat stores in the domestic sector. Heat storage can play a key role in reducing UK energy system costs by helping balance increased loads on the grid during periods of peak use, but more investment is needed in this area to drive forward innovation and cut costs. DECC has funded feasibility studies for 15 different designs and following on from this work, has awarded money to test out 9 large scale prototypes. The demonstrations will be completed by the end of March next year.
Notes for Editors
- The lead companies successful under the first phase of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund are:
- NVIL SEMICONDUCTORS
- AVIATION ENTERPRISES LTD
- CONCURRENT THINKING Ltd
- EnMODUS Ltd
- FAULT CURRENT
- FERN HOWARD
- KELDA SHOWERS
- MARINE SOUTH EAST
- PASSIV SYSTEMS
- RADFAN/HEATWAVE UK
- SEAB ENERGY
- SUSTAINABLE MARINE TECHNOLOGIES
- VALE COMPANY
- WILLIAMS GRAND PRIX ENGINEERING
- YORKSHIRE WATER
- The second phase of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund will be launched soon, with the remaining funding available.
- Under the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund organisations were able to bid for up to £1million to develop and demonstrate innovative technologies and processes and get advice from experts on how to bring their products to market. It is intended that the funding can then be used to leverage additional funds from private sector investors. Bids were assessed by DECC, with advice from investors on the commercial potential of the bids and were judged against a range of criteria including the Government’s 2020 and 2050 carbon targets, improved performance characteristics over existing technologies and products and ability to cut the cost of installation or maintenance of existing systems. The scheme is designed to support projects at Technology Readiness level 3 (TRL3) and above.
- The aim of the phased approach for the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund is to help assess the demand for this type of funding and test how the scheme works on the ground. The money is aimed at, but not limited to, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as individual entrepreneurs.
- The Phase 1 winners under the Energy Storage Technology Demonstration Competition, the round 1 winners under the Energy Storage Component Research & Feasibility Study Competition, and the winners of the Advanced Heat Storage scheme can be found below.
- DECC will invite some of the innovators who won funding under the Energy Storage Technology Demonstration Competition to take part in the second, demonstration phase of this competition later this year, with up to £17million available in total to test designs on the ground.
- The Energy Storage Technology and Demonstration Competition is part of the Small Business Research Initiative, a pre commercial procurement scheme run by the Technology Strategy Board. The competition is being funded and run by DECC.
- Applications from the second round of the Energy Storage Component Research & Feasibility Study Competition are currently being assessed and DECC will announce the winners later this year.
- Applications under both energy storage competitions were assessed against a range of criteria including the technical specification, value for money and potential for commercialisation.
- DECC supports innovation in low carbon technologies to help meet the Department’s goal of delivering secure energy on the way to a low carbon energy future and has a £200million budget spread over a number of schemes.
- Further details on DECC’s low carbon innovation programme can be found on the gov.uk webpages
- Further details on the LCICG
- The LCICG Technical Needs Assessment (TINA) for electricity networks and storage can be found on the the low carbon innovation website
- The Technology Innovation Needs Assessment on heat published in 2012 focuses on heat pumps, heat networks and heat storage as three key heat technologies that could play a key role in a low carbon future. Innovation in these technologies could reduce UK energy system costs by £14-66bn to 2050.
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