Calls for Funding



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

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.

GELINA, the JRC Neutron Time-of-Flight Facility (EUFRAT)

Source of Funding:

GELINA is an intense pulsed white neutron source, driven by a 150 MeV linear electron accelerator and used for high-resolution neutron time-of-flight measurements. The facility covers a neutron energy range from thermal energy to 15 MeV, has a time resolution of less than 2 ns (FWHM) and serves an array of flight paths up to 400 m long on which as many as 10 experiments can be carried out simultaneously. GELINA also allows using the high-intensity neutron and gamma ray fields close to the neutron-producing target. The facility is designed for high-resolution cross section measurements in the resonance region. It can be used for studying a variety of nuclear technology and scientific applications, covering areas such as fundamental physics, astrophysics, material analysis, cultural heritage and archaeology, radiation-hard electronics development and radionuclide production for medical applications. Read further on the below link.

RADMET, Radionuclide Metrology laboratories (EUFRAT)

Source of Funding:

The Radionuclide Metrology laboratories (RADMET) are equipped with a broad set of instruments used for nuclear decay measurements, determination of related nuclear data and radiological characterisation of samples and materials. The set-ups, many of them unique in their kind, are used to perform high accuracy measurements of a large number of radionuclides in diverse samples ranging from reference materials for environmental monitoring to solutions for primary standardisation of activity. RADMET is among the few laboratories world-wide to provide reference data to the international reference system (SIR) on the 100 most relevant radionuclides. In connection to the measurements the lab is well equipped for preparing sources dedicated for the specific measurements. Read further on the link below.

MCL, Micro-Characterisation Laboratory (EMMA)

Source of Funding:

The Micro-Characterization Laboratory (MCL) is dedicated to the experimental investigation of materials performance in terms of microstructure and micromechanics. The lab provides insight into the complex coupling between microstructure, its defects and the mechanical behaviour of small volumes of metals, ceramic materials, polymers and composites of interest for the safe operation of nuclear installations and for non-power nuclear applications. MCL also offers the possibility of producing nanoparticles by spark ablation method. Read further on the below link.

SMPA, Structural Materials Performance Assessment Laboratories (EMMA)

Source of Funding:

The SMPA laboratories are used for the mechanical performance characterisation, life assessment and qualification of structural materials for present and next generation nuclear systems. It includes test machines and auxiliary equipment for creep, tensile and fracture tests for different test specimens including small punch and small punch creep tests. Supporting 3D profilometry, x-ray tomography, microstructural analysis and data management tools can be offered. Read further on the below link.