Research and innovation projects in the field of materials science as well as in production technologies and processes can draw on support from just about all FFG funding programmes (depending on the structure and thematic focus of the project): from the “Innovation Cheque” through to the competence centres. The FFG General Programmes cover in particular “classical“ mechanical engineering or the metal and chemical industries, as well as medical technology, measurement and control engineering, and optical instrumentation. Projects from the field of materials and manufacturing are also represented in many thematic and structural programmes. A total of around twelve per cent of FFG funding is spent on manufacturing or production related projects and eleven per cent on materials science. It should be noted, however, that many projects in other areas also include aspects relevant to materials science and manufacturing.
Apart from the generic programmes, the following thematic programmes are of particular relevance to the materials and manufacturing sector:
- The FTI Initiative “Intelligent Production“, which promotes research into core issues relevant to the manufacturing industry within innovative RTD projects, with the goal of producing competitive products and fostering increases in productivity leading to sustainable economic growth.
- The Austrian NANO Initiative, which was launched to consolidate funding measures in the field of nanosciences and nanotechnology. The initiative supports highly innovative research collaborations in selected fields as well as networks, surveys, events, training and transnational R&D efforts in Europe.
- The Austrian research focus NANO Environment Health and Safety (NANO EHS) was established as an instrument which aims to provide targeted funding for environmental and health-related research into assessing the risks of synthetic nanomaterials.
The 7th EU Framework Programme, EUREKA and Eurostars are the key programmes for research and innovation projects in the European and international context. Under the 7th EU Framework Programme, the “Nanosciences, Nanotechnologies, Materials and new Production Technologies“ programme is of particular relevance for projects in the materials and manufacturing field.