Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with The Department for Transport (DfT) to invest up to £60 million in innovation projects. These will be to develop and deploy real world operational demonstrations of clean maritime solutions.

Opportunity Details


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For strand 1 (vessel-only or infrastructure-only), project costs can be £1m-£8m: for strand 2 (combined demonstrations), costs can be £2m-£10m. Up to 70% of costs can be covered, depending on business size.


Innovate UK

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The Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC) Round 3 is part of a suite of interventions to be launched by the UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions (UK SHORE). UK SHORE aims to transform the UK into a global leader in the design and manufacturing of clean maritime technology.

The aim of this competition is to fund real world demonstrations of clean maritime technologies in an operational setting. Your proposal must, develop, test and deploy novel clean maritime technologies focused on on-vessel technologies or shoreside infrastructure, including at ports and harbours.

This Round is split into 2 strands:

  • Strand 1: Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3 – Vessel or Infrastructure demonstrations
  • Strand 2: Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3 –Vessel and Infrastructure combined demonstrations

For strand 1, project costs can be £1m-£8m: for strand 2, costs can be £2m-£10m.


Your project must:

  • have total project costs between £1m and £8m for strand 1, or between £2m and £10m for strand 2
  • start by 1 April 2023
  • end by 31 March 2025
  • last up to 24 months
  • carry out all of its project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK

To lead a project your organisation must:

  • be a UK registered business of any size
  • collaborate with other UK registered organisations

This competition allows Trust Ports to apply as a business of any size.

There is no limit on how many applications an organisation can submit in this competition, either as a lead or a partner. If you are involved in more than one application, you must clearly state in your application how all projects can be resourced and delivered if successful.


The aim of this competition is to fund real world demonstrations of clean maritime technologies in an operational setting.

Your demonstration project must develop, test and deploy novel clean maritime technologies focused on on-vessel technologies, and/or shoreside or offshore infrastructure (including at ports, harbours and wind farms).

If you are working only on on-vessel technologies, or only on infrastructure, you should apply to strand 1; if you are working on both as part of the same project, you should apply to strand 2. If you are in any doubt about which strand to apply into, you must check by email to at least 10 working days before the competition closes. If you apply into the wrong strand, you will be ineligible and your application will not be assessed.

Your demonstration must include the technology or vessel being used in a representative real world operational environment for a period of at least 4 weeks. There is no fixed definition of how projects must undertake their demonstration and use this minimum 4 week period because it will depend on your project, technology and what is required to prove its performance. We strongly encourage projects to utilise this minimum 4 week period fully and to gather as much performance data as possible.

In your application you must clearly state how you plan to undertake the demonstration, including how much time in operational use you currently expect, and why this is appropriate for your project. During the demonstration you must validate the technology or vessel’s operation for the use case or target market and capture data on the performance.

Projects which include a vessel intended to operate at sea must include appropriate demonstrations for a minimum of 4 weeks at sea. Projects may undertake initial tests in categorised waters before progressing to sea, subject to compliance with relevant regulations, but this will not count towards the 4 weeks minimum demonstration period.

Vessel demonstrations should plan to be in a variety of sea states. Vessels must comply with and be certificated in accordance with relevant regulations before proceeding to sea.

Projects which include vessels operating on categorised waters, for example, Inland waterways, that will never operate at sea, can complete their full demonstration within categorised waters.

Vessels must comply with relevant regulations when undertaking voyages and where appropriate, be certificated subject to vessel type. These vessels cannot proceed to sea without relevant seagoing certification.

Projects involving a vessel must engage with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) during the project. The MCA may also contact successful projects shortly after winners are notified to discuss the details of your project. Failure to engage with the MCA when requested could result in your project being suspended or funding withdrawn.

Your project must:

  • underpin a full commercial and operational technology deployment after March 2025, by delivering a meaningful operational demonstration in real world conditions
  • achieve market potential through a clear strategy for commercialising the technology and the products, demonstrating the potential for significant value to the UK
  • deliver emissions reduction by demonstrating a significant greenhouse gas reduction
  • bring together a team with the necessary expertise and experience to successfully deliver the project according to its objectives, and include a representative end user such as vessel operators, ports or harbour authorities

Technologies for all sizes and categories of maritime vessel subject to the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 are in scope. Solutions can be suitable for one target size of vessel or multiple. Pleasure and commercial vessels are in scope.

Where your project intends to utilise a vessel, the vessel must be a United Kingdom Ship, as defined in 85(2) of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995, or you must provide justification for use of a non-United Kingdom Ship in your application.

All ports and harbours are in scope, including infrastructure for freight, passenger, pleasure and commercial vessels. Offshore infrastructure is also in scope, such as Wind Farms.

We strongly encourage projects from around the UK to support boosting jobs and economic growth, including from ports, vessel operators, vessel manufacturers and their supply chain. We welcome projects from areas with existing clean maritime expertise or co-located in clusters of renewable energy production and usage including hydrogen.

You must clearly demonstrate how you will anchor IP generated by the project in the UK and how it will be exploited for the benefit of the UK supply chain in the future.

We encourage projects that have been successful and were funded by the Clean Maritime Demonstrator Competition Round 1, to apply for further funding support to continue the development of your project. You are not required to have been successful in a previous round of the Clean Maritime Demonstrator Competitions to apply with an eligible project to Round 3.

If you have been funded for a project in the recent Round 2 of the Clean Maritime Demonstrator Competition, you are not eligible to apply for funding to demonstrate the same project or technology concept in Round 3. Further funding opportunities to progress Round 2 winners will be made available in 2023.

If your proposal focusses on a demonstration of a domestic green shipping corridor, you must demonstrate a vessel navigating between both ends of the corridor in real-world operational setting. To qualify as a corridor, at least one zero-emission vessel must be transiting the route between two UK ports during the minimum 4 week demonstration period.

If your domestic green shipping corridor project does not require investment in both a vessel and infrastructure at either end of the corridor then you should apply into Strand 1.

Specific themes

Your project can focus on one or more of the following:

Prioritised theme:

  • domestic green shipping corridors

Vessel low and zero emission technologies:

  • vessel propulsion and auxiliary engines, for example, battery, fuel cell, and internal combustion engines using low or zero carbon alternative fuels such as hydrogen, methanol or ammonia, including hybrids and engines capable of using multiple fuels including zero emission options.
  • wind propulsion, including soft-sail, fixed-sail, rotor, kite and turbine technologies, targeting a range of ship types from small vessels to large cargo carriers, both as primary and auxiliary propulsion.
  • low carbon energy storage and management
  • physical connections to shoreside power or alternative fuels, including fuelling lines
  • enabling technologies such as motors, drives, sensor and power electronics

Port and shoreside, including offshore solutions:

  • shoreside low and zero carbon fuelling including bunkering of such fuels
  • charging infrastructure and management
  • low and zero emission shoreside power solutions, such as enabling docked vessels to turn off their conventional power supply for ancillary systems
  • physical connections to shoreside power or alternative fuels, including fuelling lines
  • shoreside renewable energy generation at the port to supply vessels
  • zero emission shoreside power supply for vessels, including grid or renewable energy supply
  • low carbon fuel production, such as hydrogen, methanol, ammonia
  • zero emission infrastructure, including stationary assets for freight handling and port operations within a port or harbour site.

Innovate UK KTN will be hosting a briefing event on 30th September, 10am-noon, online: register to attend. A recording will be available after the event.

If you want help to find a project partner, contact Matthew Moss, KTM for Maritime, at Innovate UK KTN.

Related Events and Recordings


Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3 Briefing Event

10.00 - 12.00 | Online

Watch Now
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