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Engine retrofit for clean air - € 1.5 Million


The contest was launched on 20 April 2016 with a deadline on 27 September 2017. Potential participants are encouraged to register for the contest by 12 June 2017. Prize will be awarded in 2018.

Read the detailed rules of the contest.


What is the "Horizon Prize"?
"Horizon Prizes" are a new instrument that offers a financial reward for developing a breakthrough solution to societal or technological problems. (1) Horizon prize on Engine Retrofit for Clean Air and (2) Horizon prize on Cleanest Engine of the Future are inducement prizes.


What does the "inducement prize" mean?
This type of prize is used to spur investment in a given direction, by specifying a target prior to the performance of the work. It is therefore mainly used for research and innovation, in order to:

  • identify new approaches or ideas and attract investment in specific areas
  • demonstrate the feasibility or potential of some technologies or promote their development and diffusion


What is the difference between a "Prize" and a "Grant"?
Prizes are awarded for the delivery of a pre-defined result (included in the prize application), while grants are funding research and/or innovation projects based on a grant proposal that will be carried out in the future.


What is the "Horizon prize on Engine Retrofit for Clean Air" about?
Current engines, while certified on test stands according to the Euro standards in force, exhibit higher noxious emissions while driving. Horizon prize on Engine Retrofit for Clean Air aims at spurring the development of new technologies that can be applied to existing diesel engines and powertrains to reduce emissions of pollutants in real driving conditions to the lowest level possible, in order to improve air quality issues in European cities.


Who can participate?
The contest is open to all legal entities (i.e. natural or legal persons) or groups of legal entities. Some exceptions apply (Please see Rules of Contest). Applicants that have already received an EU or Euratom prize cannot receive a second prize for the same activities.


How can I apply for the Prize?
You can apply to participate in the contest through the Participant Portal.


Do I have to develop a complete vehicle in order to participate?
Performance will have to be demonstrated by providing a complete vehicle including the proposed innovation for real drive testing. More information is provided in the Rules of Contest. Prizes aim at developing and applying only powertrain technologies, no alterations can be applied to such donor vehicle to improve its performance (for instance lightweighting it or improving its aerodynamics or tires).


To which kind of transport mode is the prize targeted?
The Prize is targeted to passenger cars only. Cars in which the improvements are achieved by using fuels or stored energy other than the main fuel (i.e. plug-in electricity, hybrids with large batteries, stored compressed gases, etc.) are excluded. However, it is expected that the innovation can be applied also to light commercial vehicles, normally using similar engines.


Which type of engine is considered?
The Engine retrofit prize is mainly targeting the existing diesel-engine vehicle fleet. The list of vehicles and engines that can be used to demonstrate the innovation for the retrofit prize will be available on the prize website. However, if the technology can provide improvements to other type of vehicles (for instance, direct injection gasoline ones), there are bonuses foreseen in the rules of contest if such improvements are also demonstrated on additional prototypes.


To whom will the prize be awarded?
The Horizon Prizes on engines is a best-in-class contest. This means that the prize is awarded to the participant that better addresses the announced objective within the stated time period.


How will my technology be tested and evaluated?
Once the contest is closed, a high level jury will evaluate all eligible entries against the general award criteria described in the Rules of Contest.
The prize will be awarded to the entry that demonstrates the best solution to the challenge whilst meeting the award criteria.


What are the obligations related to the assignment/spending of the Prize money and on the accountability with respect to the spending of the Prize money?
There are no obligations on assignment/spending of the Prize money and no obligations on accountability with respect to the spending of the prize money. This will not be subject to an audit.


FAQs about the application

The rules of the contest don’t include the testing details other that the 3 cycles (NEDC, WLTC, CADC), but they refer to the Template Part B, where a fixed weight of 1500kg is mentioned. In the RoC, however, chassis dyno parameters shall be selected based on UNECE Regulation 83 coefficients using the empty weight of the donor vehicle minus any replacement components plus 100kg plus the retrofit weight (for the post retrofit tests). What is the correct approach for weight?
The definition in the RoC should be followed, a specific template will be added as the current one is applicable to the Cleanest Engine of the Future Prize.


Template B requires that the WLTC to begin with an engine cold start, but at the same time it specifies that between NEDC and WLTC the engine should be switched off and the vehicle may be parked on the chassis dyno for up to 2 hours. This is not a cold start as defined for the NEDC.
To avoid any confusion with the NEDC requirements, which are not intended to be applied, the word ‚cold‘ will be deleted from template B, i.e. WLTC shall be run with any temperature the engine will have after the prescribed maximum interval of two hours, as cold start performance will be assessed by the NEDC test. A certain time between the tests will in any case be needed to analyse the bags, with a maximum limit of two hours.


Template B requires CADC to be conducted with “engine hot start” but at the same time it is required that between WLTC and ARTEMIS cycles the temperature shall be kept at 25°C for at least 2h. Does that mean that the engine need to keep running between the WLTC and the CADC?
No, the engine shall be switched off, ARTEMIS shall be run with any temperature the engine will have after the prescribed interval which is required to increase the chamber temperature from 10 to 25°C.


Are the NO2 targets based on the NO2/NOX ratio or for the NOX/NO2 ratio, as mention in the introduction sentence?
NO2 to NOx is correct as it is the one used for the limit.


In section 7 – Procedure of the “Rules of the contest” it is stated that the testing has to be done “at an external independent laboratory”, and in Section 10 –Initial testing definition it says “certified laboratory”. What kind of certification is required?
With “certified” an accreditation like ISO 9001 or 17025 or similar from other organizations is intended.


How will the emission levels be assessed from the three testing cycles?
In order to be eligible, the tested technology has to pass minimum threshold on each test cycle individually. To get to a single mark, an average of these results will be used, obtained by scoring each test result for each criteria according to the scoring grids and averaging the resulting marks.


Which coefficients should I use at the dyno?
Donor car:
Inertia: Empty weight + 100 kg --> Equivalent inertia
F0, F2 --> a(N), b (N/(km/h))^2 for the relevant inertia
from Regulation 83 Table A4a/3 of E/ECE/TRANS/505/Rev.1/Add.82/Rev.5

Retrofitted vehicle:
Inertia: Empty weight + 100 + retrofit - removed parts*
F0, F2 --> a(N), b (N/(km/h))^2 for the relevant inertia
from Regulation 83 Table A4a/3 of E/ECE/TRANS/505/Rev.1/Add.82/Rev.5
*removed parts which are acceptable according to the rules


* All the above will be reflected in an upcoming update of Rules of Contest and Submission forms on the Participant Portal


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