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The European Commission will support 14 top-class projects to bring their innovations faster onto the market under the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot. Each project will receive around €2 million from the Fast Track to Innovation strand of the EIC pilot, funded under Horizon 2020, the EU's research and innovation programme. The 14 projects involve 59 partners, including small and medium-sized companies, industrial partners, universities and non-profit organisations, from 18 countries. With this funding and extra business acceleration support, the projects will be able to finance their close-to-market innovation activities.
Projects selected for funding include a recycling technology to introduce rubber from 'end-of-life' tyres into production lines as virgin rubbers substitute, a system to treat persistent atrial fibrillation, an artificial intelligence tool that improves video quality and limits internet traffic tied to video streaming, and a stirling heat pump for industrial use in high temperatures.
The Fast Track to Innovation scheme is a central part of the EIC pilot, targeting radically new, breakthrough products, services, processes or business models that open up new markets. It offers up to €3 million to consortia composed of 3 to 5 partners including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), industrial participants, research centers, universities, cluster organisations, industry associations, incubators, investors, and the public sector. The scheme is for relatively mature groundbreaking technologies, concepts and business models that are close to market. The participants also have access to free business coaching and acceleration services.
By the cut-off date of 31 May 2018, the European Commission received 2016 proposals. The next cut-off date for Fast Track to Innovation is on 23 October 2018.