Zero Emission Propulsion CR&D

UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £10Mn for net zero propulsion innovative projects, as part of the Future Economy Net Zero programme. Interested? Then get in touch to find out more!


  • Competition closes: 07 December 2022, 11am
  • Invite to interview: 13 January 2023
  • Interviews: 13 February – 17 February 2023
  • Applicants notified: 24 February 2023
  • Project start date & duration: by August 2023 for up to 18 months


Projects must focus on one or more of the following transport sectors: Maritime; Rail; Automotive; Aerospace.

Projects must address one or more of the following:

  • improved range and overall system performance capability
  • decreased total cost of ownership
  • adoption of and transition to zero emission end products
  • strengthening of the UK supply chain

Proposals must demonstrate a need by including an end customer such as Tier 1 or original equipment manufacturer (OEM) within your consortium. They can be a funded partner or non-funded project adviser.

You will be required to demonstrate a strong route to market position as part of your application.

Proposals can describe how you will manage:

  • the circularity of the materials used and end of life pathways for example, reuse and recycling
  • compliance with regulation and how you will work with relevant regulatory bodies for novel technologies in the future
  • the production and commercialisation of your technology at a price the market is willing to pay

Specific Themes

  • electric propulsion technologies
  • fuel cells for electric propulsion
  • PEMD (power electronics machines and drives) systems for electrified powertrains for vehicles, locomotives or vessels
  • energy storage technologies (excluding batteries) and energy management software and controls
  • integration (system or component level) of electric propulsion technologies
  • range extenders that are zero emission and do not emit greenhouse gases, this can include on vehicle energy generation
  • on platform fuel storage, including hydrogen tanks
  • hydrogen internal combustion engine technologies, with restricted use on certain applications such as non-road applications
  • energy efficient electrification for traction and non-traction rail vehicles, and bi-mode locomotives (hydrogen and battery powered)
  • wind propulsion, including soft-sail, fixed-sail, rotor, kite and turbine technologies


  • Subsidy Control and EC State Aid funding rules apply
  • Must be collaborative projects led by a UK-registered business and include at least one SME.
  • Work must be carried out in the UK and project results exploited from UK.
  • Subcontractors are allowed, preferably UK-based, with appropriate and justified costs.


  • Total eligible project costs between £250,000 and £1.5Mn (£10M pot).
  • Industrial Research (TRL3-5) funding rates apply (50% large company/60% medium/70% micro)
  • Research organisations in your consortium can share up to 20% of the UK total eligible project costs.

How PNO can support you

The UK team has a strong track record in securing some of the most competitive national and European grants on behalf of its clients, with a full understanding of how a project should be presented to stand the highest chance of success. Each year in the UK alone, we are responsible for the submission of more than 100 funding applications across all sectors and priority areas. Based on this extensive experience, through careful project selection and using key insight into how a project should be best positioned, we consistently achieve success rates that are more than 5 times the typical success rates for UK national schemes and EU programmes.

Contact us for further information

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