Accelerating Photonics innovation for SME’s: a one stop-shop-incubator

Project ID: 779472

Co-funded by the European Commission's under the Horizon2020 programme

Duration: November 2017 – October 2022


The access to top-level experts and leading photonics technology platforms provided by the ACTPHAST consortium is realized through focused innovation projects executed in relatively short timeframes (typically 6-9 months) with a critical mass of suitably qualified companies with high potential product concepts. The technical innovation support is supplemented by expert business and financial coaching supports to help ensure that the innovation activities are also commercially focused and primed for market success. ACTPHAST is closely aligned with the Photonics Pilot Lines and Mass Manufacturing in Europe to seamlessly progress successful prototypes developed through the ACTPHAST incubator all the way to large-scale production and market-ready products.

In addition, ACTPHAST includes Europe Unlimited in the consortium who run the highly successful TechTour program around Europe each year to match venture capital with high potential start-ups and scale-ups in key technology areas. Together with this partner and in closely collaboration with Photonics21 and the Photonics PPP, ACTPHAST will deliver the European Photonics Venture Forum (EPVF) once a year at key locations around Europe to help boost the level of new financial investment sources for photonics innovation by European companies.

As a result of its innovation support activities, ACTPHAST is expected to deliver a substantial increase in the revenues and employment numbers of the supported companies by enabling faster time-to-market of new product opportunities and addressing emerging markets where photonics is a key enabling technology.  To the supported researchers ACTPHAST is expected to leverage their breakthroughs to a higher technology readiness level making use of mature photonics technology and to a higher investment readiness lesson by business coaching.  Furthermore, through its extensive outreach activities, ACTPHAST will ensure there is an increased level of awareness and understanding across European industries and European researchers of the technical and commercial potential of photonics, especially amongst first users and "non-photonics" end users.