Horizon 2020 (H2020) is the largest and most important research and innovation programme ever carried out by the European Union (EU), aimed at facilitating the transfer of great ideas from the laboratory to the market.
The Horizon 2020 programme has been designed as a means of stimulating economic growth and job creation: The research is being promoted as an investment in the future and placed at the heart of the EU's programme for smart, sustainable, inclusive and job-friendly growth.
H2020 is founded on three fundamental pillars:
- scientific excellence
- industrial leadership
- social challenges
Standard research project funding is available to consortia made up of at least three legal entities pertaining to a EU Member State or EU associated country. The consortium responds to calls for interest by submitting a project proposal, which can obtain funding if the EU evaluation process is successful.
In fact, in the case of particularly significant projects, the consortia that have so far presented applications are made up of more than ten partners, including universities, research institutes and companies with an innovative vocation, who want to test their limits with new challenges in order to consolidate a leading position in their sector.
At Techedge, we have been interested in H2020 since 2015. The programme is extremely broad and full of initiatives: thanks to the support of the Warrant Hub S.p.A. company, which has a specialised management division for European funded projects, we were quickly able to identify the right space for us within the programme.
At Techedge we believe that modern Information Technology cannot have building increasingly complex and efficient systems as its sole objective. On the contrary, a great deal of effort must be put into seeking the value that we can bring to the environment in which we are operating: it is necessary to take an interdisciplinary approach in order to create new algorithms, technologies and interfaces.
It is precisely because of our vocation that our interest has moved towards calls for tenders where IT is a component that interacts with other disciplines to achieve an innovative result: this is how we came to participate in the SmartFan, InnovaConcrete and Repair3D projects.
THE SMARTFAN PROJECT
Smart by Design, Intelligent by Architecture.
SMARTFAN aims to develop smart materials and intelligent product architectures, with integrated functionalities that allow interaction with the surrounding environment and reaction to external stimuli through biomimetic technologies, self-sensing, actuators and damage repair capabilities.
The engineering of their intelligence takes its inspiration from nature and is based on the use of advanced materials with special chemical-physical properties, such as carbon nanotubes or electromagnetic nanoparticles. When applied to intelligent structures and used in an IoT scenario, these materials enable the production of smart products that can, for example, save energy, independently detect and repair damage, change shape, and have optical and magnetic properties.
This project is funded by the Research and Innovation Programme of the European Union Horizon 2020, grant agreement no. 760779.
THE INNOVACONCRETE PROJECT
Concrete monuments, an asset to be preserved.
INNOVACONCRETE is an innovative and ambitious project that aims to preserve historical monuments built with concrete, which constitute the most significant and tangible cultural heritage of the twentieth century.
To this end, an inter-disciplinary team has been set up, combining a strong scientific background in nanomaterial simulation and synthesis techniques with a broad knowledge of the preservation of cultural heritage from humanities disciplines, and a solid industrial perspective.
The project foresees an innovative approach that consists in producing the C-S-H (calcium silicate hydrates) gel that is the fundamental component of the cement paste used to repair fractures in the degraded monuments, in situ. In addition, new multifunctional techniques and materials for surface and fracture treatment will be developed and tested using state-of-the-art technologies, such as the self-repair of damaged parts. The solutions proposed will be tested and validated on a variety important 20th century monuments in order to study their performance and raise public awareness about the issue of conserving European cultural heritage.
This project is funded by the Research and Innovation Programme of the European Union Horizon 2020, grant agreement no. 760858.
THE REPAIR3D PROJECT
Recycled plastic for advanced 3D printing applications.
REPAIR3D aims to address all aspects related to the development of thermoplastic materials for both simple and carbon fiber reinforced 3D printing, from recycled resources.
The project covers all the phases involved: from the selection of types and flows of waste suitable for the process, to the definition of strategies for repairing materials, making them compatible and improving them for use in additive production (Additive Manufacturing, AM). It will also study the compatibility of thermoplastic matrices and reinforcing fibre and nanoparticles, compare different techniques of additive thermoplastic production and optimize the materials in terms of processability and performance.
This project is funded by the Research and Innovation Programme of the European Union and Horizon 2020, grant agreement no. 814588.