SmartPilots EU Flag

Improving policies in support of shared pilot facilities to increase their impact on the Key Enabling Technology Industrial Biotech and the European Bioeconomy

SmartPilots EVENTS

We invite all stakeholders (managing authorities, intermediate bodies, regional funding authorities and applicants, funding beneficiaries, innovation organisations, cluster organisation, users of SPF…)  with an interest in shared pilot facilities (SPF) and innovation to be actively involved in our events.  For more information please contact Katrien Molders.

 28 March 2018  SMartPilots Interregional SEMINAR: SmartPilots Action Plans  Milan, Italy
 27 March 2018  SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 7: INNOVHUB  Milan, Italy
 27 September 2017 SmartPilots Interregional SEMINAR ‘Towards and Action Plan’ Den Haag, The Netherlands
 26 September 2017 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 6: Bioprocess Pilot Facility, BPF Delft, The Netherlands
 24 May 2017 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 5: VTT Bioruukki  Espoo, Finland
 23 May 2017 SmartPilots Interregional SEMINAR on International Collaboration  Espoo, Finland
 16 March 2017 SmartPilots Interregional SEMINAR on Indirect Support Mechanisms for Shared Pilot Facilites Redcar, UK
 15 March 2017 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 4: The Centre for Process Innovation, CPI Redcar, UK
13 October 2016 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 3: Fraunhofer Center for Chemical-Biotechnological Processes CBP Fraunhofer CBP, Leuna, Germany
12 October 2016 SmartPilots Interregional SEMINAR on Direct Support Mechanisms for Shared Pilot Facilities Fraunhofer CBP, Leuna, Germany
14 September 2016 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 2: Agro-industrie Recherches et Développements, ARD ARD, Pomacle, France
11 May 2016 SmartPilots STUDY VISIT 1: Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant BBEPP, Ghent, Belgium
10 May 2016 SmartPilots KICK-OFF Meeting BBEPP, Ghent, Belgium

About the SmartPilots project

SmartPilots’ objective is to improve regional policies in support of Shared Pilot Facilities to increase their impact within the deployement on the Key Enabling technology (KET) Industrial Biotech and the bioeconomy.

The bioeconomy adresses societal challenges such as climate change, sustainable economic growth and energy independence. The bioeconomy enables the sustainable production of chemicals, pharmaceutical products, materials, food, feed and energy from renewable raw materials. Shared pilot facilities are open access test sites that bring bioeconomy innovations from the laboratory into industrial practice. They are open to all companies and research institutes, and can thus be seen as shared investments in innovation equipment. They have proven to be successful in helping innovators, especially SMEs, to bridge the so called Valley of Death, i.e. the innovation phase between between laboratory and successful market introduction that comes with a high technological and financial risk. Typically, initial funding from governments is available to build a Shared Pilot Facility, but it is a challenge to safeguard their long-term existence, especially since bioeconomy is relatively new and dedicated policies are currently lacking in many regions. In SmartPilots, regional policies will be improved to provide support in a cost-effective and impact oriented manner. This will be done by:

  • optimizing direct support for shared pilot facilities
  • optimizing indirect support i.e. direct support for users of shared pilot facilities
  • by facilitating interregional cooperation regarding Shared Pilot Facilities

Phase 1 (2016-2018): The project partners, regions that locate a SPF or have a high interest and SPFs, make a thorough regional analysis of availability and use of funding mechanisms for SPF and their users (through study visits and questionnaires to relevant stakeholders). During three interregional seminars, the results of these analyses will be discussed and best-practices will be exchanged. The findings of the seminars will be summarized in Regional Factsheets which will be used to draw up regional action plans.

Phase 2 (2018-2020): Regional implementation of the action plans and monitoring of the results of the implementation.

For more information:


  • Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant, BE
  • Department of Economy, Science and Innovation from Flanders, BE
  • Centre for Process Innovation from Tees Valley, UK
  • VTT Technical Research Centre Ltd, FI
  • Bioprocess Pilot Facility, NL
  • Provincie Zuid Holland , NL
  • Innovhub SSI from Lombardy, IT

Case Studies:

  • Agro-industrie recherches et développements ARD (France)
  • Fraunhofer – Zentrum für Chemisch-Biotechnologische Prozesse CBP (Germany)