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Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships for COVID-19

Source of Funding: EU Commission

In light of these exceptional circumstances, the EU Commission announces that the Erasmus+ Programme takes up the challenge to confirm its role as the main EU instrument supporting innovation in education, training, youth and sport as well as providing opportunities for personal, socio-educational and professional development of people in Europe and beyond, with the aim of leaving no-one behind.

In order to the respond to the circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2020 the Erasmus+ programme will exceptionally support two additional formats of Strategic Partnerships. Applicants have to submit their grant application by 29 October at 12:00 (midday Brussels time) for projects starting between 1 March and 30 June of the following year.


R&I Scheme 2020 - Support Scheme for Research and Innovation Projects in the Fields of Energy and Water

Source of Funding: Energy and Water Agency

The R&I Scheme seeks to support R&I projects whose objectives are in line with national policies and seek to contribute in a tangible manner to addressing one of the following:

  1. A national policy priority or challenge in the energy and water sectors; or
  2. Economic competitiveness and growth in a variety of national sectors, from an energy and water perspective.

The selection and funding of proposals under this Scheme shall be on a competitive basis.

The focus is on projects at oriented-basic research and applied research to experimental design stage, that is projects at Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 2-6, with a duration ranging between eighteen and twenty-four (18-24) months.

Target projects may fall in a range of disciplines, from engineering and natural sciences to social and behavioural sciences, big data and artificial intelligence.

Seven overarching topics have been identified as priority areas for support. Preference for financial support will be given to the highest scoring proposals within these priority areas; there is no order of preference of the priority areas.

Click on the link below to read further.

Information source:

European Green Deal Call

Source of Funding: Horizon 2020

The Green Deal call will mobilise research and innovation to foster a just and sustainable societal transition aiming at ‘leaving nobody behind’.

Projects are expected to deliver tangible and visible results relatively quickly and show how research and innovation can provide concrete solutions for the Green Deal main priorities.

This is why the call will support

  • pilot applications, demonstration projects and innovative products
  • innovation for better governance of the green and digital transition 
  • social and value chain innovation

In addition to technological development and demonstration, the call encourages experimentation and social innovation for new ways to engage civil society and empower citizens.

In relation to the current pandemic, the call will contribute to the green and digital recovery and to increasing societal resilience for example in agriculture, biodiversity acceleration of renewables, clean transport and modernisation towards a clean and circular industry. (continue reading on the below link)

The 11 Different Areas are:

Call area 1: Increasing climate ambition: cross-sectoral challenges

Call area 2: Clean, affordable and secure energy

Call area 3: Industry for a clean and circular economy

Call area 4: Energy and resource-efficient buildings

Call area 5: Sustainable and smart mobility

Call area 6: Farm to Fork

Call area 7: Restoring biodiversity and ecosystem services

Call area 8: Zero-pollution, toxic-free environment

Call area 9: Strengthening our knowledge in support of the European Green Deal

Call area 10: Empowering citizens for transition towards a climate neutral, sustainable Europe

Call area 11: Accelerating the clean energy transition and access in partnership with Africa

For more information, contact your National Contact Points on h2020.mcst@gov.mt


Maritime Seed Awards 2020

Source of Funding: University Malta

The Maritime Seed Award (MarSA) is a joint initiative between the Malta Marittima Agency (MMA) and the University of Malta supported by the TAKEOFF Business Incubator, Knowledge Transfer Office and the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Business Incubation (CEBI) at the University of Malta.

The sixth call of this programme aims to help move promising ideas from the Maritime Field forward toward commercialization. To date, fifteen projects have received funding through prior programmes. Award funding totalling to €100,000 will help to bring the innovative early-stage idea/technology from lab to life and provides support to researchers and entrepreneurs when they need it most to increase the likelihood of success.

The Maritime Seed Award will fund two types of initiatives: University of Malta academic staff may apply for ‘proof of concept’ funds which will enable a step-change in taking an innovation developed through research at the University closer to being commercialised; whereas entrepreneurs from within or outside the University may apply for ‘seed’ funds which will enable a step-change in taking their independent technology or knowledge-based start-up closer to the first customer or investment.

Potential applicants for the Seed Fund must attend the scheduled online workshop session hosted by TAKEOFF, while Proof of Concept Fund applicants must attend the workshop being organised by the Knowledge Transfer Office. The workshops will provide an overview for creating a competitive proposal. The final application form will only be accepted if applicants or their representatives register and attend their respective workshops. This will only be waived in extenuating circumstances. Should applicants be unable to attend either workshop, alternative meetings must be held directly with the Knowledge Transfer Office for POC or TAKEOFF for SF. Both workshops will be held online and the workshop link will only be sent to those who register beforehand. To register for the event, please click here


UfM Grant Scheme for employment promotion - Regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Source of Funding: UfM

The economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic are enormous and have led to unprecedented economic shocks that are directly felt by households worldwide. According to the ILO, ca. 94 % of the worldwide labour force lives and works in countries that are affected by company closures. The economic crisis will account for a loss of working hours equivalent to 305 million full-time employees.

In the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean, the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic threaten to undo years of economic development.

With the Mediterranean citizens at risk of losing their employment and livelihood, they are forced to adapt to a new world of work and economic activity. People already more vulnerable to economic shocks and restricted mobility, such as informal workers, blue-collar workers, youth and women, are specially affected.

At the same time, the crisis can also be the starting point to develop new ways of working as well as new forms of training and education.

Goal

With the UfM Grant Scheme for employment promotion – Regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UfM is actively supporting non-profit organizations in the Mediterranean that work to give people opportunities in view of the COVID-19-induced economic crisis. It focuses on projects that enable people to find jobs, continue to gain a living and improve their work and living conditions. At the same time, we seek to support projects that encourage entrepreneurship and improve the business climate for Micro-, Small and Medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) as crucial providers of employment in the Mediterranean region.

For more information please click here


PAMEC, Properties of Actinide Materials under Extreme Conditions (ActUsLab)

Source of Funding:

he Properties of Actinide Materials under Extreme Conditions (PAMEC) facility consists of an ensemble of state-of-the-art installations designed for basic research on behaviour and properties of actinide materials under extreme conditions of temperature, pressure, external magnetic field and chemical environment. The facility includes devices for measurements of crystallographic, magnetic, electrical transport, and thermodynamical properties as well as facilities for Np-237 Mössbauer spectroscopy, and a modular surface science spectroscopy station allowing photoemission, atomic force microscopy, and electron scattering measurements. Read further on the below link.


FMR, Fuels and Materials Research (ActUsLab)

Source of Funding:

The Fuels and Materials Research (FMR) laboratory is situated at the Joint Research Centre of Karlsruhe (Germany). The Nuclear Fuel Safety Unit provides the scientific basis for the objective assessment and modelling of the safety related behaviour of nuclear materials, with emphasis on nuclear fuels, under normal and off-normal operating conditions, serving European and international authorities as well as academic and research organisations. The main activities covered by the FMR laboratory involve the synthesis and characterisation of actinide-containing materials (including plutonium and minor actinides). Standard and advanced techniques for sample synthesis, materials characterization and property determination are employed. These include sol-gel precipitation, powder blending and pressing, conventional or spark plasma sintering, encapsulation techniques, X-ray diffraction, vibrational spectroscopy (Raman and infra-red), electron microscopy (scanning and transmission) and focused ion beam, drop and differential scanning calorimetry, Knudsen cell effusion mass spectrometry, electro-motive force analysis, dilatometry, indentation, laser flash methods for the measurement of thermal properties, laser melting. Read further on the below link.


HC-KA, Hot Cell Laboratory (ActUsLab)

Source of Funding:

he Hot Cell Laboratory (HC-KA) consists of 24 shielded hot cells where highly radioactive materials (including full-length light water reactor pins) can be received, handled, examined and returned to their owners.

The facilities are equipped for Post Irradiation Examination (PIE) of nuclear fuels, including non-destructive and destructive techniques. Irradiated fuel pins and capsules properties are determined using profilometry, visual inspection, eddy current measurements, gamma scanning. Internal fission gas pressure and composition are measured by puncture test. Microscopy examination of fuel and cladding, and heat treatments (limited to specific configurations) can be performed. A Raman spectrometer for the determination of surface composition is also available in hot cell. Read further on the below link.


MONNET, Tandem accelerator based fast neutron source (EUFRAT)

Source of Funding:

MONNET is a high-intensity quasi mono-energetic fast neutron source, driven by a vertical 3.5 MV Tandem accelerator producing either continuous or pulsed beams of protons, deuterons or helium ions. Quasi mono-energetic neutrons are generated in the energy region 0 - 24 MeV by using lithium, deuterium or tritium targets. MONNET may also be used as a photon source or for studies requiring proton, deuteron or alpha beams without the emphasis on neutron production, provided that there is added value for the JRC to do so. Read further on the below link.


HADES, Underground laboratory for ultra-low level gamma-ray spectrometry (EUFRAT)

Source of Funding:

JRC operates a laboratory for ultralow-level radioactivity measurements inside the 225 m deep underground laboratory HADES, which is located at the premises of the Belgian Nuclear Research Centre. In HADES, the muon flux (secondary cosmic rays) is a factor of 5000 lower compared to above ground and the flux of protons, neutrons and electrons is reduced to an insignificant level. This reduction of the cosmic ray flux makes the background in gamma-ray spectrometry measurements significantly lower compared to above ground. Therefore it is possible to detect very low amounts of radioactivity (sub mBq range). Eleven specially designed high purity germanium detectors are used for the measurements. There is also a scanning station by which the homogeneity of deadlayers in HPGe-detectors can be studied. Read further on the below link.


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