Pilot, demonstration and flagship projects programme

The aim of the SFOE’s "Pilot, demonstration and flagship projects" programme is to promote the market-oriented development of innovative technologies and solutions that support the economical and efficient use of energy or the use of renewable forms of energy. The programme enables the testing and demonstration of new technologies and solutions so that an assessment can be made of their technical feasibility and functionality, as well as their practical applicability and economic viability. In this way it facilitates the market transfer of the findings obtained from Swiss energy research and thus forms an essential link between research and market introduction. A distinction is made between pilot and demonstration projects depending on the status of development of the technology concerned. Demonstration projects also have the potential to become flagship projects:

The purpose of pilot projects is to carry out practical system tests. These are carried out at a scale that permits the calculation of scientific, technical, economic or social data that cannot be obtained through laboratory tests.

The purpose of demonstration projects is to carry out market testing. These tests are carried out a scale of 1:1 and permit a comprehensive technical, economic and social assessment from the point of view of effective introduction on the market. In particular they provide answers to questions regarding the performance and economic viability of the system in question. They also draw the attention of potential users to the new technology, new product, new organisational structure or new instrument.

Flagship projects are exemplary demonstration projects of national importance. In order for flagship projects to qualify for financial support by the SFOE, they have to involve a public entity as a project partner. SFOE flagship projects render Switzerland’s future energy supply in line with Energy Strategy 2050 visible to energy specialists as well as the general population.


Applications for support for pilot, demonstration and flagship projects

Applications for financial support for projects from the pilot, demonstration and flagship projects programme may be submitted by e-mail at any time to the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE).

The process of submitting applications comprises 3 steps:

Step 1 – Determine whether the project fulfils the criteria for support from the programme. For a complete overview of the applicable criteria, please refer to the directive on the submission and evaluation of applications and financial support from the pilot, demonstration and flagship projects programme (cf. "Documents").

Step 2 – In case of doubt, discuss the proposed project with the personnel responsible for the programme (cf. link to specialist staff below).

Step 3 – Submit the complete application to the SFOE together with all necessary enclosures and any other relevant documentation.

The SFOE examines each submitted application in terms of content and at the formal level, and takes a decision within three months following its receipt of the complete application. If the application is approved, the modalities of cooperation between the applicant and the SFOE will be agreed in the form of a contract. The deadlines for reviews and reports, plus any applicable milestones, will also be specified in the contract. Upon completion of the project, a comprehensive final report encompassing the full duration of the project has to be submitted to the SFOE.



Fact sheets: pilot and demonstration projects


Application for financial support

Finance sheet for applications and financial reports

Report templates

Specialist staff
Last modification 15.10.2018

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