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Zelzate, Belgium

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-1 | Award Amount: 1.61M | Year: 2008

Hybrid laser-arc welding offers many advantages compared with conventional arc or laser welding. The process does, however require a high level of control if high quality welds are to be produced. This proposal tackles the issues of weld quality and productivity improvement for manufacturing pipes through development of advanced sensors for the hybrid laser-arc welding process. Hybrid process development must be performed for each material to be welded, with the main focus in this proposal being on austenitic stainless steels and C-Mn steels. By developing and integrating sensors that monitor weld quality and allow process modification, the project will increase the quality and productivity of European pipe manufacture beyond the state of the art, enabling it to overcome foreign competition which is particularly increasing from countries outside Europe like India, China and Turkey. Problems facing tube manufacturers include, production of too much scrap product due to process inconsistencies, lack of on-line quality control, inconsistent equipment operation, inconsistent joint preparation and presentation, lack of productivity and reliance on the skill of operators to change process parameters to maintain weld quality. Last but not least, explicit consideration will be given to health, safety, environment and quality issues, by ensuring that where physical interaction with the process is required, the risks to operators, environment and product are minimised. The automation of monitoring and the adaptation of the welding process accordingly, will ensure a better product quality. As the majority of welded tubes or pipes carry hazardous materials, this improvement in pipeline weld quality greatly reduces the risk of environmental disasters through pipeline failure and injury or loss of life associated with it because mechanical failure is the third most frequent cause of spills for oil lines.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: OCEAN 2013.3 | Award Amount: 9.97M | Year: 2013

The BYEFOULING project will address high volume production of low toxic and environmentally friendly antifouling coatings for mobile and stationary maritime applications. The technology will fulfil the coating requirements as a result of the incorporation of novel antifouling agents and a new set of binders into coating formulations for maritime transportation and fishing vessels, floating devices and aquaculture. The main vision of BYEFOULING is to provide the means for industrial, cost-effective and robust manufacturing of antifouling coatings in Europe, where SMEs are both coating components developers and production technology providers. A set of procedures, guidelines and fabrication tools will be developed, enabling short time to market for new coating concepts. The main goal of BYEFOULING is to design, develop and upscale antifouling coatings with enhanced performance compared to current available products. The approach in BYEFOULING is to tackle the different stages of the biofouling process using innovative antifouling agents, covering surface-structured materials, protein adsorption inhibitors, quorum sensing inhibitors, natural biocides and microorganisms with antifouling properties. Encapsulation of the innovative compounds in smart nanostructured materials will be implemented to optimize coating performance and cost all along their life cycle. A proof-of-concept for the most promising candidates will be developed and demonstrators will be produced and tested on fields. BYEFOULING will combine a multidisciplinary leading research team from 11 European countries, which are already acting worldwide in the scientific community, with highly relevant and skilled technological partners, to build a consortium able to develop a full production line for antifouling coatings in Europe. Readily available low toxic and cost-effective antifouling coatings will increase the efficiency of maritime industry and be the enabling technology to realize new products.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP-2010-4.0-3 | Award Amount: 22.10M | Year: 2011

The core concept of Accelerated Metallurgy is to deliver an integrated pilot-scale facility for the combinatorial synthesis and testing of many thousands of unexplored alloy formulations. This facility would be the first of its kind in the world and would represent a significant advance for metallurgy. The novel technology that enables this HTT facility is based on automated, direct laser deposition (DLD). The key feature of this technology is the way in which a mixture of elemental powders is accurately and directly fed into the lasers focal point, heated by the laser beam, and deposited on a substrate in the form of a melt pool, which finally solidifies to create a unique fully-dense alloy button with precise stoichiometry. This robotic alloy synthesis is 1000 times faster than conventional manual methods. Once produced, these discrete mm-sized samples are submitted to a range of automated, standardised tests that will measure chemical, physical and mechanical properties. The vast amount of information will be recorded in a Virtual Alloy Library and coupled with computer codes such as neural network models, in order to extract and map out the key trends linking process, composition, structure and properties. The most promising alloy formulations will be further tested, patented and exploited by the 20 end-users. Industrial interests include: (i) new lightweight fuel-saving alloys (<4.5 g/cm3) for aerospace and automotive applications; (ii) new higher-temperature alloys (stable>1000C) for rockets, gas turbines, jet-engines, nuclear fusion; (iii) new high-Tc superconductor alloys (>30K) that can be wire-drawn for electrical applications; (iv) new high-ZT thermoelectric alloys for converting waste heat directly into electricity; (v) new magnetic and magnetocaloric alloys for motors and refrigeration; and (vi) new phase-change alloys for high-density memory storage. The accelerated discovery of these alloy formulations will have a very high impact on society.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP-2007-3.5-1 | Award Amount: 10.45M | Year: 2008

Outstanding progress has been made in recent years in developing novel structures and applications for direct fabrication of 3D nanosurfaces. However, exploitation is limited by lack of suitable manufacturing technologies. In this project we will develop innovative in-line high throughput technologies based on atmospheric pressure surface and plasma technologies. The two identified approaches to direct 3D nanostructuring are etching for manufacturing of nanostructures tailored for specific applications, and coating. Major impact areas were selected, demonstrating different application fields. Impact Area 1 focuses on structures for solar cell surfaces. Nanostructured surfaces have the potential to improve efficiencies of cells by up to 25% (rel), having dramatic impact on commercial viability. Impact Area 2 focuses on biocidal surface structures. Increasing concerns about infections leading to the conclusion, that only multi-action approaches for control of infection transfer can be effective. We plan to combine such surfaces with 3D nanostructures, which will both immobilise and deactivate pathogenic organisms on surfaces. Impact Area 3 is the direct growth of aligned carbon nanotubes on electrode surfaces. The material is under investigation for use in high load capacitors which are seen as key components for energy storage systems, e.g. for Hybrid Electric Vehicle. Impact Area 4 focuses on tailored interfaces to achieve durable adhesion on polymer surfaces by 3D nanostructuring and coating. Target is to reduce energy consumption by introducing lightweight materials. The N2P partners have been chosen to ensure a strong capability to exploit and disseminate the outcomes. Involved end-user industries represent high market value segments: photovoltaics, aeronautics, automotive, steel. The consortium includes 7 technology leading SMEs and 4 multi-national industries, cooperating with 9 institutes for industrial research and a public body from 8 European countries.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: Fission-2010-2.3.3 | Award Amount: 12.18M | Year: 2011

The 2010-2012 implementation plan of the European Sustainable Nuclear Industrial Initiative (ESNII), in the frame of the Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform (SNE TP), establishes a very tight time schedule for the start of construction of the European Gen IV prototypes; namely the construction of the LFR ETPP (European Technology Pilot Plant) Myrrha will start in 2014 and that of the SFR Prototype ASTRID will start in 2017. The GEN IV reactors pose new challenges to the designers and scientists in terms of higher operating temperature and higher irradiation damage of materials with respect to the present technologies. In this frame, the MATTER (MATerials TEsting and Rules) Project intends to start well targeted researches to perform careful studies of materials behaviors in GEN IV operational conditions and to find out criteria for the correct use of these materials in relevant reactor applications. Aim of the present Project is to complement the materials researches, in the frame of the EERA guidelines, with the implementation of pre-normative rules. The Project comprehends: - Mature materials research focused on testing procedures for the new reactors conditions - Supporting experiments of mature materials aimed to liquid metals characterization and to pre-normative qualification, - Pre-normative activities, comprehensive of experiments, to revise and update the design rules, - Preparation and starting of the EERA Joint Program by harmonization of the structure and finalization of the preliminary program in accordance with the deployment strategy of the SNETP. A relevant advantage of this approach consists in the possibility to achieve a correct aiming for the expensive materials testing operations. Other advantages are the comparability of the experimental data, being produced by consensual procedures, and the immediate availability of the experimental results (at least for some properties) in view of their pre-normative deployment.

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