The core of the Horizon 2020 programme consists mainly of 3 pillars: Excellent Science, Industrial Leadership and Societal Challenges. Next to other programmes as Spreading excellence and Widening participation and Science with and for Society, the Joint Research Center is also highlighted.
Excellent science raises the level of excellence in Europe's science base and ensures a steady stream of world-class research to secure Europe's long-term competitiveness.
This pillar aims to speed up development of the technologies and innovations that will underpin tomorrow's businesses and help innovative European SMEs to grow into world-leading companies.
A challenge-based approach will bring together resources and knowledge across different fields, technologies and disciplines. This will cover activities from research to market with a new focus on innovation-related activities, such as piloting, demonstration, test-beds, market uptake...
Autoship is, as the name suggests, an acronym for autonomous ship. Just like with self-driving cars, the possibilities of an unmanned boat seem endless. It can create more efficient freight transport, around the clock deliveries and these are just a few of the examples. The project has two societal challenges.
At first, De Vlaamse Waterweg was a bit hesitant as their experience with FP7 or Horizon 2020 projects was limited and they had not been very successful up until then. The fact that they were already doing basic research on the topic of autonomous boats, and the administrative help of NCP FLanders helped De Vlaamse waterweg to cross the line and get involved.