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Canada-UK Critical Minerals: Sustainability and Circularity

General & Misc
Project Size:
£5.4 million

UK registered organisations and CanadianSMEs can apply for a share of up to £5.4 million for collaborative R&Dprojects on circularity in critical minerals.

Competition opens: Monday 20 November 2023
Competition closes: Wednesday 3 April 2024 5:00pm


Innovate UK and the National ResearchCouncil of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) arecollaborating to fund innovative projects. A total of £5.4 million has beenallocated, with up to £3.5 million from Innovate UK and up to CA$3 million fromNRC IRAP.

They aim to support collaborative R&Dthrough UK-Canada partnerships to advance the development and commercialisationof circular solutions for critical minerals. Proposals must addresstechnological challenges, have a high innovation potential, and include a planfor future commercialisation. Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) andregulatory challenges must also be considered.

Funding type: Grant

Project size:

UK partners can request up to £400,000 perapplication. Canadian SMEs can receive up to CA$500,000 from NRC IRAP.

Your proposal

The aim is to foster R&D collaborationsbetween Canada and the UK focusing on circularity in critical minerals andtheir supply chains. Projects must focus on one or more of five themes:

  1. Enhanced Circularity in Critical Minerals - Battery Systems
  • E.g., improving recovery efficiency of critical minerals from      batteries
  1. Enhanced Circularity in Critical Minerals - High Performance     Permanent Magnets (HPPM)
  • E.g., sustainable routes for processing recovered REE materials.
  1. Sustainable Use of Critical Minerals – Processing &     Manufacturing
  • E.g., novel manufacturing methods to enhance circularity.
  1. Sustainable Use of Critical Minerals – Reduction in Use
  • E.g., novel approaches to reduce reliance on critical minerals.
  1. Innovations in Environmental, Societal, Governance (ESG) for     Critical Minerals
  • E.g., life cycle analysis and sustainability models

Portfolio approach

They aim to fund a variety of projectsacross different business sizes, technologies, themes, and locations.

Research categories

Feasibility projects, industrial researchprojects, and experimental development projects are eligible.

Projects they will not fund:

  • Projects focused on end application performance or improvements     in final use
  • Projects not focused on listed critical minerals from UK or     Canadian strategies
  • Innovations without a clear focus on circularity and     sustainability in critical minerals supply chains

They cannot fund projects dependent onexport performance or domestic inputs usage.

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