Horizon 2020 Energy

Provides 1 - 5M € in subsidies for research, development, and demonstration within:

About Horizon 2020 Energy

With support from Horizon 2020 you will be able to conduct international research projects in support of EU policies for energy. With a successful application to the program, companies will receive:

  • 1-5M EUR for technology and product development
  • IPR - Intellectual Property Rights
  • A network of partners
  • Access to new markets
  • Technology and knowledge transfer

The purpose of Horizon 2020 Energy is to increase European competitiveness and create new jobs.

Possibilities with Horizon 2020 Energy

Horizon 2020 Energy offers opportunities for SMEs as well as large companies, regardless of industry and technological level. It offers interesting possibilities for traditional production companies as well as high-tech companies; the key factor is that the company is facing a technological challenge or has a project idea for the solution of a technological/societal challenge. With Horizon 2020 Energy, the company can receive co-financing from the EU for project research and development.

Horizon 2020 Energy calls will be offered to projects within the following categories (see current calls below):

  • Low carbon technologies, such as solar, wind, ocean, hydro, geothermal, heating and cooling, energy storage, biofuels, alternative fuels, and carbon capture and storage
    • Renewables: Next generation development and demonstration etc.
    • The EU electricity grid: Meshed offshore grids, transmission and wholesale, distribution and retail
    • Storage technologies: Small and large scale, and next generation technologies
    • Sustainable bio- and alternative fuels: Next generation technologies, technology demonstrations etc. 
    • Decarbonization of fossil fuels: Power sector and energy intensive industries, etc.
  • Energy efficiency:
    • Buildings and consumers: Prefabricated modules, high energy performing buildings, ICT-based solutions, etc.
    • District heating and cooling technology
    • Industry and products: Energy efficiency innovation, technology for heat recovery throughout the energy cycle etc.
  • Smart cities and communities: Integrating energy, transportation, and ICT sectors, etc.

Requirements for Horizon 2020 Energy

There are three primary requirements for a project to be eligible for support from Horizon 2020 Energy:

  • Height of Innovation - the project/technology must be novel and solve a European energy problem.
  • Large market potential or socioeconomic impact - min. 100M EUR over 5 years.
  • The project demands three partners from three countries.

Upcoming deadlines

Below are the upcoming deadlines for Horizon 2020 Energy. Expect 1-2 months for the proposal writing process.


Europe is not recovering enough of its waste energy. A vast amount of waste heat is produced in urban areas from a range of local sources and from urban waste or waste water systems. Data centres are another rapidly growing sector generating heat that could potentially be recovered and reused for heating or cooling buildings. 

Project under this call should:

  • Demonstrate waste heat and waste water heat recovery in urban areas, in services sector and transport system facilities and their connection and integration into the existing 
  • Develop sustainable business models and organisational, managerial, and financial solutions for deployment of the proposed technological solutions in the EU, with due regard to the legislative framework. 

The challenge is to integrate demand-response-enabling elements into Energy Management Systems and thus create 'building – energy system interaction' towards optimising, at building level, energy consumption, production and storage considering the availability and price of energy supplied via the grid.  

At the building and building unit level (residential or non-residential) the focus should be on optimisation, integration and demonstration of cost effective and interoperable solutions, including testing of new technologies and systems in real life situations. 


The challenge is to design, build, test & demonstrate new processes/components or innovative adaptation of existing solutions for waste energy recovery in large industrial systems. Actions under this call should:

  • Improve the energy efficiency of large industrial systems 
  • address the recovery of waste heat from streams from industrial processes 

Solutions should be adaptable to various types of industrial processes and should be validated by full scale demonstration in real production conditions in industrial facilities. 


Actions are needed to increase the energy efficiency, the use of renewable energy sources and integration of data centres in the energy system. Proposals should cover several of the  following areas: innovative and energy efficient cooling solutions, waste heat reuse, geographical and temporal workload balance, integration of local and remote renewable energy sources, integration in smart grids, integration with district heating/cooling networks, integration of power backup system in the grid and use of heat pumps for efficient use of waste heat etc.

Proposals should include the development of business models to trade heat, cold, electricity or energy security and storage.  


The objective is to demonstrate that ICT-based solutions can contribute to saving energy by motivating and supporting behavioural change of energy end-users. 

The main challenges are:

  • Establishing cost-effectiveness, i.e. demonstrating that solutions allow a good return on investment through energy savings
  • Making energy usage data accessible to the consumer and to designated third parties (for application development or designing new business models around them)
  • Demonstrating that energy savings can be achieved without compromising comfort levels. 

In their vast majority, heating and cooling demand is supplied using high valued energy sources e.g. electricity and fossil fuel driven appliances. However, there is a wide range of thermal energy sources which due to their temperature levels are not generally used to deliver useful heating and/or cooling. Actions are needed to develop, demonstrate, validate and improve the overall efficiencies of:

  • Technologies that are able to use low valued (low-grade) energy sources (residual and renewable sources of thermal energy) in low-exergy heating and cooling systems. 
  • Technologies that are able to take advantage of very low and low (moderate) temperature resources, e.g. by upgrading them, in order to generate useful heating and cooling and if relevant electricity 

The integration of variable renewable energies challenges the transmission network. Proposals will target the transmission grid and demonstrate a combination of at least 2 of the following aspects:

  • Power transmission technologies and management of large scale generation in the context of an increased share of variable renewables;
  • Large scale storage relevant to the transmission network (GWh scale);
  • Communication / ICT technologies / control tools to enhance real-time awareness, introduce more flexibility the transmission grid, the integration of storage facilities, of more flexible generation, of demand-response mechanism and its interface to the distribution grid; cross-border collaboration;
  • New approaches to the wholesale market facilitating the participation of variable renewable energy sources, remunerating adequately new flexibility services to the grid 

The challenge is to create and deploy common tools for planning, integration and operation across the energy system and its actors. Proposals must target one or several of the following areas: 

  • Novel European grid and end-to-end energy system planning tools 
  • Enhanced TSO / DSO collaboration and coordination tools 
  • Solutions for the deployment of neutral data access points ensuring a fair and transparent data access to all energy actors  
  • Synergies between electricity, gas and heat networks, associated business and market mechanisms and analysis of existing regulatory aspects 
  • Socio-economic aspects and environmental aspects  

Concepts should be developed to a pre-commercial stage technology readiness level (TRL) 5 and include: model testing, consideration of the most suitable construction and production principles for small series or one off vessels of this type, environmental impact assessment, cost estimation as well as both the marketability (technology push), and the cost effectiveness of the offshore operations concerned (demand pull). Work shall include development and testing of vessel concepts and its equipment so as to reduce costs and enable more efficient operations within either coastal or offshore environments.


Proposals are requested to address the reduction of the cost of PV electricity by optimising the PV system energy yield and lifetime and decreasing cost at module (encapsulation materials, glass, and antireflective layers, anti-soiling layers, module architecture, etc.), balance-of-system component (electronics, inverters, tracking systems, etc.) or system configuration levels. 


The challenge is to drastically reduce water consumption. In spite of the improvements in recent years, water consumption remains a crucial barrier to the deployment of CSP plants especially in arid areas. 

Projects shall demonstrate cost-effective technical solutions which significantly reduce or replace the water consumption of CSP plants. The demonstration shall take place in a region with very good solar resource values.


The potential for the use of solar heat for industrial purposes is still largely untapped. The challenge is to reduce the technical complexity and develop cost effective solutions.

Proposals shall demonstrate less complex and cost effective technical solutions, which significantly increase the share of solar heat in industrial processes and which can be easily integrated into existing industrial plants. 


The challenge is to demonstrate and construct now a full scale >10MW turbine and provide proof of a significant cost reduction potential. 

The development of large scale (>10MW) turbines will have intrinsically logistical requirements regarding handling, installation, operation and maintenance, constituting a large part of the levelised cost of energy (LCOE). Improved handling (storage, loading, transport, etc.) on land, in the harbours and/or at sea, as well as improved logistics around operations and maintenance have to be taken into account in this innovation action. 


The challenge is to develop and demonstrate new advanced tools based on the first experiences of ocean energy arrays. 

Design tools for array of wave and tidal energy converters have been developed. Single devices have already been deployed and the first arrays are planned for 2016 onwards. Based on the experience with the first ocean energy arrays, the design tools can be developed further and a 2nd generation of advanced tools is foreseen, which will have a significant positive effect on future devices and arrays. 


The challenge is to demonstrate the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of geothermal systems for heating and cooling in individual installations being retrofitted. 

Proposals shall target easy to install and efficient underground coupling systems for retrofitting existing types of buildings or adaptable to existing types of buildings, including historical buildings, to make geothermal energy a standard source of heat and cold in building renovation.  


Proposals should aim at testing EGS systems to ensure reservoir productivity in different geological settings and energy production at competitive costs. Proposals could propose up-scaling existing EGS systems. 


It is essential to diversify the technology portfolio and feedstock basis to allow competitive production of advanced biofuels for use in transport. The following sub-challenges should be addressed in proposals: 

Improving the technical and economic feasibility of the production of new and advanced liquid biofuels;
Demonstrating the feasibility of using feedstock particularly suitable for transport energy purposes. 


The specific challenge is to enable commercial production of sustainable and cost-competitive advanced biofuels aimed for use in the aviation sector. In particular, supporting the accomplishment of pre-commercial plant(s) for advanced biofuels for aviation based on sustainable biomass feedstock is essential. 

Projects should target the most promising advanced aviation biofuel production pathways incorporating upgrading technologies and valorisation of co-products that improve the economic viability of the fuel production.  

Can your project get funding from Horizon 2020 Energy?

Let us contact you to discuss your possibilities within Horizon 2020 Energy

Can your project get funding?

We can tell you if your project is suited for public funding. Tell us a little bit about your project we can help you identify the funding potential.

Tell us about your project

or call (+45) 61 60 75 08

We help you succeed

We help companies obtain public funding by converting good projects to well-prepared applications.

Our services cover the entire application process:

Identifying funding opportunities
We identifying your best funding opportunities
Planning and scoping your project
We plan and scope your project to meet demands
Writing the successful application
We write the application that increases your chance of success