Brussels offers SMEs €1m to test industrial IoT, make Europe leader in Industry 4.0
The European Commission is offering manufacturing companies funding of €60,000 each to run collaborative smart manufacturing experiments at neutral hub sites, with a total funding pot stretching to almost €1 million.
The Commission has invited small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the manufacturing and technology sectors to apply for financial support to develop and test internet-of-things (IoT) applications and cyber-physical systems (CPS) for the European industrial market.
The funding brief stipiulates experiments must cover one of the three scenarios: smart factory, smart product, or smart supply-chain functions. Successful applicants will make use of new ‘Manufacturing Industry Digital Innovation Hubs’ (MIDIHs), billed by the Comission as “one-stop-shops” for new digital resources for Industry 4.0.
The new funding call targets the development of data driven applications by technology providers and industrial IoT experiments by manufacturing companies. Candidates are required to work within the new MIDIH architecture and provide data from their projects to open cloud platforms for open use.
Applications for funding are open until August 6, and available here.
MiDIH is a project within the Commission’s ‘ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs (I4MS) initiative, supported by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation funding programme. Under I4MS, SMEs can apply for technological and financial support to conduct digital experiments.
The MIDIH website states: “MIDIHs will leverage networks of local competence centres, each specialised in aspects of cyber physical production systems [and] industrial IoT. [They will] attract, mentor and nurture local manufacturing SMEs towards Industry 4.0 projects, experiments and business. A common platform of knowledge, methods and collaboration tools will be shared among MIDIHs, and allow cross-border fertilisation, continuous improvement, open innovation.”
The European Commission wants Europe to set “the reference for the Industry 4.0 market” by 2023.
The new funding call will focus on four main topics (within the three statedmanufacturing disciplines): modeling and simulation of innovative cloud applications; digital twin modelling via distributed edge-based architecture; mixed reality technologies for remote training and maintenance; and machine learning applications for every aspect of smart manufacturing.