Digital Europe programme: call for Large-scale pilots for cloud-to-edge based service solutions

The European Commission has officially announce the opening of the call for Large-scale pilots for cloud-to-edge based service solutions, as part of the Digital Europe programme (DIGITAL-2022-CLOUD-AI-03-PILOTS-CLOUD-SERVICES). The call has a budget of 40 million €, with an indicative budget per grant of 8-10 million €.

The main objective of the call is the deployment of large-scale pilot projects at scale which demonstrate the use of innovative, sustainable, secure and cross-border cloud-to-edge services in a set of well-chosen application sectors.

A necessary condition for these pilot projects is the use of the Digital Europe Smart middleware, Simpl (details on vision are in section 2.1.1 of the Digital Europe programme). Additionally, pilot projects should address specific services and solutions and must be co-designed and co-created by partners who represent both the supply and demand sides. Pilots must unequivocally demonstrate their added value and their potential for take-up into new application fields.

These deployments will serve the double objective of, first, being the first actual concrete implementations and deployments of the middleware platform and its different open source middleware solutions serving the needs of a specific application sector and use case and the gained experience should feedback into this separate process. Diversity, both in geography and use cases, of the retained large scale pilot projects will therefore be key in testing the versatility and robustness of the platform. The second objective is to deploy additional cloud-to-edge services that are particularly innovative and/or not (yet) of enough general interest to be procured for the common good.

The selected projects should act as showcases for the whole of the Union, providing concrete examples of how they could be taken up and implemented in other application sectors by clearly demonstrating the added-value they bring.

The projects consist of the large-scale rollout of several of the following advanced ‘cloud-to-edge’ services across the EU:

  • Edge cybersecurity services, notably for shared edge resources;
  • Highly secured, low latency local edge services running on green infrastructures that enable federated Artifical Intelligence and;
  • Ultra-secure and ethical standards compliant data management such as through scalable blockchain based services.
  • Predictive analytics and data visualisation services;
  • Edge-cloud native multi-tenancy
  • This list of services should not be seen as closed.

The retained projects need to ensure that:

  • they are built over the cloud-to-edge middleware platform.
  • they are hybrid, i.e. that they truly cover at least cloud and edge computing and, where possible, more (far-edge or High Performance Computing);
  • they track their environmental performance, with a view to allowing an energy-efficient and sustainable data management;
  • they are accompanied by an appropriate monitoring system to measure the uptake of cloud-to-edge based services and their associated data flows;
  • they coordinate among them and with the Alliance for industrial data, edge and cloud, the European data spaces, the Data Space Support Centre to ensure, through a common reference governance framework, the reuse by other actors of the federated cloud-to-edge based services they develop;

The deadline for proposal submission is 24 January 2023 17:00:00 Brussels time.

The Call document details admissibility conditions and other information of interest.

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