ZEVI: Shore power technologies, shore-side and vessel-side UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £77 million. The funding will be to develop, deploy and operate clean maritime solutions for 3 years in a real world environment. This funding is from the Department for Transport. Eligibility This competition is open to collaborations only. To lead a project your organisation must be a UK registered business of any size. Open now Opened: 6 February 2023 Closes: 19 April 2023

Programme: Innovate Uk


Opens: 6 February 2023

Closes: 19 April 2023


Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with the Department for Transport (DfT) to invest up to £77 million in innovation projects. These projects will develop, deploy and operate clean maritime solutions for 3 years in a real world environment.

The Zero emission vessel and infrastructure (ZEVI) competition is part of a suite of interventions being launched by the UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions (UK SHORE), part of DfT. They aim to transform the UK into a global leader in the design and manufacturing of clean maritime technologies.

The aim of this competition is to fund:

  • 100% battery electric vessels
  • alternative fuel vessels
  • vessel energy efficiency technology, such as wind assistance
  • vessel charging infrastructure
  • shore power and corresponding vessel technology
  • alternative fuel refuelling infrastructure for vessels

Alternative fuel electric hybrid vessels are within scope. “Alternative fuels” in this competition refers to fossil fuel alternatives such as hydrogen, ammonia and methanol.

Your proposal must build, deploy and operate novel clean maritime technologies focussed on on-vessel technologies and related shoreside infrastructure including at ports, harbours and offshore.

The Zero emission vessel and infrastructure competition is funding multi year demonstrations across 3 strands:

Your demonstration must include the zero emission vessel and infrastructure being used in a representative real world operational environment for a period of 3 years.

It is your responsibility to ensure you submit your application to the correct strand for your project. You will not be able to transfer your application and it will not be sent for assessment if it is out of scope.

If you make an error in your application that makes it ineligible for funding it will not be sent for assessment.

In applying to this competition, you are entering into a competitive process. This competition closes at 11am UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding type


Project size

Your project’s total costs must be between £3 million, and £40 million. The total grant cannot exceed £20 million.

Who can apply

Your project

Your project must:

  • have total costs of between £3 million and £40 million
  • not exceed a grant request of £20 million
  • start by 1 October 2023
  • claim all grant funding by 31 March 2025
  • complete a 3 year demonstration of all funded vessels and supporting infrastructure
  • carry out all of its project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK

The funding period for your project can last for a maximum of 20 months, the project funding period.

You must complete your funded project and 3 year demonstration of all vessels, with corresponding infrastructure, no later than 31 March 2028.

You must only include eligible project costs in your application.

Under current restrictions, this competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian and Belarusian entity as lead, partner or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian and Belarusian source.

Lead organisation

To lead a project your organisation must:

  • be a UK registered business of any size,
  • be a ship owner or manufacturer or operator (ship as defined in the Merchant Shipping Act (MSA) 1995 Section 313(1)), or an infrastructure owner or operator, such as a port or windfarm
  • collaborate with a UK registered infrastructure owner or operator if you are a ship owner, manufacturer or operator
  • collaborate with a UK registered ship owner, manufacturer or operator if you are an infrastructure owner or operator

More information on the different types of organisation can be found in our Funding rules.

Non-UK business can apply to this competition in reference to activities they are planning to undertake in the UK. The business must be registered in the UK before any funding can be awarded and all work must be undertaken in the UK.

Trust ports and Municipal ports will be treated as businesses.

Academic institutions cannot lead or work alone.


Up to £77 million has been allocated to fund innovation projects across the three strands of this competition. Funding will be in the form of a grant.

You can request funding for your eligible, capital project costs and your non-capital research and development (R&D) project costs. These costs must be listed separately in your application.

Your total grant request must be no more than £20 million against your total project costs.

If successful you will not be able to:

  • reassign capital costs to R&D costs
  • reassign R&D costs to capital costs
  • increase the amount or proportion of grant funding you are requesting for capital costs or R&D costs

The total funding available for the competition can change. The funders have the right to:

  • adjust the funding allocations between the three competition strands
  • apply a portfolio approach

Your proposal must demonstrate value for money and your grant funding request must be the minimum needed to make your project viable.

We will work with successful projects to enable funding to be claimed and drawn down, to support interim payments defined as part of key commercial agreements between project participants and suppliers. If successful you will be required to evidence commercial agreements with suppliers and draw down the grant according to milestones and terms stated within the agreement.

All funding for your project must be claimed and drawn down by the 31 March 2025. Your demonstration must continue until 31 March 2028 at the participants’ own costs.

Research and development costs (non capital costs)

If your organisation’s work on the project is commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically but for the purpose of this project will be undertaking commercial or economic activity.

For industrial research projects, you could get funding for your research and development (R&D) eligible project costs of:

  • up to 70% if you are a micro or small organisation
  • up to 60% if you are a medium sized organisation
  • up to 50% if you are a large organisation

For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get funding for your research and development (R&D) eligible project costs of:

  • up to 45% if you are a micro or small organisation
  • up to 35% if you are a medium sized organisation
  • up to 25% if you are a large organisation

For more information on company sizes, please refer to the company accounts guidance. This is a change from the EU definition unless you are applying under State aid.

If you are applying for an award funded under State aid Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.

During the funding period to 31 March 2025, you can claim for ‘repair and maintenance’ contracts related to vessels or infrastructure. You can also forecast and claim for 'repair and maintenance’ contract costs that are required for your demonstration phase to 31 March 2028.

These costs are separate from the cost of purchasing the vessels or infrastructure and must be listed within the Innovation Funding Service finance section as part of your ‘research and development’ costs.

All your related Capital Costs must be submitted separately on the capital costs spreadsheet provided.

Separating these costs will allow Innovate UK to support you in receiving the appropriate level of funding. Funding can only be claimed until 31 March 2025, claims that fall after that date cannot be supported.

All repair and maintenance contracts and any other goods or services offered or purchased between project partners, must be delivered without profit for the purposes of this competition.

Make An Enquiry
Live chat
Password Reset
Please enter your e-mail address. You will receive a new password via e-mail.