News story

Beyond batteries: contracts available for new power generation

Organisations can apply for a share of £750,000 to investigate new technologies that generate power for robotic and autonomous systems.

military robot

The Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) has up to £750,000 to invest in projects that investigate small and lightweight power generation that can be integrated into robotic systems and carried by a person.

Projects with promising ideas could also be eligible to share a further £750,000 to improve them in a second phase.

The CDE is particularly interested in technologies that:

  • improve endurance – stretching to days rather than minutes
  • are lightweight and man-portable
  • have high energy density – greater than 1,000 watt hours per kg

The military is increasingly looking to robotic and autonomous systems for many functions, including resupply, logistics and other military uses.

Use of autonomous systems is, however, limited by a lack of lightweight power systems. This competition is looking for innovative power systems that could last around 48 hours.

The funding is under the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI).

Find out more about SBRI and how it has helped businesses.

Competition information

  • the competition is open, and the deadline for applications is 1 February 2017
  • the competition is open to any organisation and is for fully funded development contracts
  • phase 1 projects are expected to be worth between £40,000 and £80,000 and to last up to 9 months
  • a briefing event for potential applicants will be held on 1 December 2016
Published 15 November 2016