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Research & Development Request

H2020 CE-SFS-36-2020: looking for industrial partners in Europe and farming organisations in South Africa

Country of Origin: Spain
Reference Number: RDES20191112001
Publication Date: 12 November 2019

Summary

A group of German, Spanish, Bulgarian and North Macedonia R&D centres have developed a micro-irrigation system, based in clays tubes. They are looking for industrial companies with expertise in the development of new materials and technologies related to irrigation systems (mainly from Europe), and South-African end users (farmers or agricultural companies) interested in the call CE-SFS-36-2020 “Diversifying revenue in rural Africa through bio-based solutions” for completing consortium.

Description

An R&D institution from Germany has developed a technique for micro-irrigation based on the use of small clay elements that has shown promising potential and preliminary results with regard to providing plant roots with efficient water supply saving water wastage. Together with three other European partners (from Spain, Bulgaria, and North Macedonia), they are currently conducting additional fieldwork and seeking access to finance to  further investigate and confirm the innovation as a relevant solution to the global challenge of water scarcity and water shortage suffered by farmers. The consortium is currently reaching out experts in the field of irrigation who may be interested in collaborating in the joint research. The aim is to apply a proposal to Horizon 2020 call CE-SFS-36-2020 “Diversifying revenue in rural Africa through bio-based solutions” (two-stage RIA). Deadline for the 1st stage call: 22-01-2020. The call has the 2nd stage deadline: 8 September 2020. Deadline for the EoI:15-12-19.
Partners sought are industrial organisations mainly from Europe, but also possible from Africa, involved in the development of water purification systems and production of fertilizers, ceramic tubes or products.
Another type of partners sought are South-African farmer organisations or agricultural companies that will be willing to test the different combinations of types of tubes and fertiliser formulation, adapting the technology to each soil conditions and irrigation requirements.

Advantages and Innovations

The principal advantages of the technology developed are: 
-no water pressure required: low CO2-footprint and low energy consumption
-no electronic control required: no installation, no management, no maintenance needed.
-self-regulation system: water offer exactly under water demand achieving the lowest water consumption.
-self-regulating fertilization & pesticides: addition of fertilizers regulated by water demand obtaining a drastic reduction of groundwater pollution.

Stage Of Development

Under development/lab tested

Requested partner

There are two types of partners sought:
1. Industrial partners mainly from Europe involved in the development of new materials and technologies related to irrigation systems. Industrial South-African companies are also welcomed
2. South Africans farmer associations, cooperatives, local authorities or agricultural companies that will act as end-users.

Specific area of activity of the partner:
Industrial companies must be involved in the development and production of fertilizers, ceramics, water purification systems and plastics for irrigation.
End-users in South Africa should be farmer associations, cooperatives, local authorities or agricultural companies.

The tasks to be performed by the industrial partners are:
-Fertilizer producer´s activity will be the development of a specific formulation for each crop to be tested.
-Ceramic producer´s activity will be the development of a high scale production system of clays tubes.
-Water purification company´s activity will be the adequacy of water conditions for irrigation and fertilizers formulation release to crops.
-Plastic producer´s activity will be the development of a large-scale production system of plastic connection system for the clays tubes. Plastic should be recycled and/or recyclable.

The task to be performed by the South-African end-users is:
- testing of micro-irrigation system and fertilizers formulation in different crops and soil conditions.

Experience in proposals coordination will be more than welcomed, but it is not necessary.

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