Turning solar and bioenergy into electricity: two new technologies will enter commercial demonstration phase thanks to EU loans

Brussels, 20 December 2017

Two first-of-a-kind projects aimed at demonstrating commercially innovative ways of harnessing solar and bioenergy will be built thanks to loans totalling €45 million from the InnovFin Energy Demo Projects (EDP) facility - funded under Horizon 2020, the EU research and innovation programme. Successful demonstration will pave the way for future commercialisation of these technologies.

The upcoming deals were announced today in Brussels by Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Ambroise Fayolle, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), Jean-Eric Petit, CEO of CHO-TIPER, and Frank Averdung, Chief Executive Officer of Oxford PV.

Under the agreements, the French CHO-TIPER project will receive a loan of up to €30 million to help finance an innovative gasification plant which will convert wood residues and commercial and industrial waste into electricity and heat. The other beneficiary, Oxford PV, will get a €15 million loan to set up a pilot production line for a new and highly-efficient photovoltaic (PV) technology in Germany.

Commissioner Moedas said: “Every investment in renewable energy takes us a step closer to fighting global climate change while creating new sustainable jobs and economic growth in Europe. I am happy to see two renewable energy pioneers getting EU support, and I hope the list of beneficiaries will continue to grow next year to bring about the much needed energy transition. Innovative clean energy technologies are essential to overcome financing gaps and reach the market."

The €62 million CHO-TIPER project is expected to cut carbon-dioxide emissions by 30,000 tons during each year of its operation by installing a technology that is cleaner than waste incineration, and also much more efficient.

Oxford PV's €30 million project aims to demonstrate the commercial viability of producing crystalline silicon and perovskite solar cells, a promising new technology for PV panels which, if successful, will represent a leap in PV efficiency compared to other commercially available technologies.

The two deals announced follow the signing of a €10 million InnovFin Energy Demo Projects loan in July 2016 with the Finnish company AW-Energy to build a full-scale demonstration unit of their WaveRoller concept in Portugal. This technology focuses on converting wave energy into electrical power.


Launched in June 2015 by the European Commission and the EIB, the InnovFin Energy Demo Projects facility is an innovative, sectoral debt facility which supports first-of-a-kind demonstration projects in the fields of renewable energy, energy storage, smart grids, and carbon capture utilisation and storage. Manufacturing processes of innovative technologies in these areas are also eligible. This facility supports the implementation of the EU's Strategic Energy Technology Plan and was enhanced as an action of the Accelerating Clean Energy Innovation Communication in the context of the EU Energy Union. The objective is to help to roll-out the next generation of low carbon energy technologies by supporting projects in a stage where access to finance is particularly difficult. This is in line with the main goal of the European Innovation Council. Once fully commercialised, these new technologies are expected to greatly contribute to EU's leadership in renewable energy.

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