The EU large-scale initiative aiming at taking graphene from the laboratories to the market had launched in spring 2019 a call targeting industrial partners that can bring their expertise to the consortium in several areas of work. On 9th December 2019, the Graphene Flagship announced the selection of new eleven “Spearhead Projects” that will start in April 2020 and will catalyse the commercialisation of graphene-enabled products.These newly launched projects will among other support the production of safer aircrafts, greener and autonomous cars but also improve the efficiency of energy grids or make communication systems faster and more reliable.
Since its launch in 2013, the Flagship has been moving progressively towards the development of innovative graphene technologies that can have an impact on society and the economy. The Graphene Flagship has now committed €45 million (i.e. a third of its funding for the period from April 2020 to March 2023) to these eleven large-scale commercialisation projects led by key European industrial partners who will also co-fund the projects with a further combined contribution of €47 million.
Working with commercial partners such as Airbus, Fiat, Lufthansa, Siemens and ABB, the new Spearhead Projects will combine the results of the Graphene Flagship’s scientific research with progressive commercial applications. It is a good example of Europe taking scientific results and pushing them through, up to the point where industry takes the lead.
The Graphene Flagship is one of the first two FET (Future and Emerging Technologies) Flagships launched in 2013 by the European Union to address major scientific and technological challenges. It is one of Europe's biggest ever research initiatives: it coordinates over 150 academic and industrial research groups in more than 20 countries, and has over 90 associate members and 31 partnering projects. The Graphene Flagship activity involves over a thousand researchers in 31 countries across Europe.
The Graphene Flagship's research effort covers the entire value chain - from materials production to components and system integration - and aims at developing applications in the areas of flexible electronics, printed electronics, 5G mobile technologies, batteries, aerospace, medical applications, filtration and automotive.