The European Commission is offering £4.4 million for innovative technology developers who can produce fuels from sunlight, water and carbon from within the air.
Interested applicants will have to demonstrate their fully functional creations designed to generate sustainable fuels from a photosynthesis-like process.
Artificial photosynthesis has been breaking through for some time but now, the European Commission believes, is the best time for technological advances to make it a reality.
The commission believes that once fully functional, the photosynthesis-based technology will provide an alternative to fossil fuels with numerous applications: from home use to industry and transport.
Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Carlos Moedas stated: “Europe is the world leader in innovative clean energy solutions that help tackle climate change.”
“This new prize and other EIC [European Innovation Council] Horizon Prizes will move these efforts up a gear by challenging bright minds to think outside the box and come up with novel technologies that improve our daily lives and help protect the planet.”