Context of PRONTO

The process industries in Europe

The process industries manufacture agrochemicals, commodity and speciality chemicals, fuels, detergents, disinfectants, lubricants, metals, minerals, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, plastics and steel. Their products are the basis for further high value manufacturing. The EC Enterprise and Industry Sectors Overview [2] places these industries among the largest and most dynamic industrial sectors in the EU. There are 3.1 million jobs in the sector and sales represent about 20 % of global chemicals sales. Therefore PRONTO is addressing an important manufacturing sector.

European R&D strategy for the process industries

The research programme of PRONTO aligns with the Europe 2020 Strategy aiming to deliver smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. Flagship initiatives, roadmaps and existing networks have followed from the Strategy, some examples listed below.

  • A resource-efficient Europe – Flagship initiative under Europe 2020 Strategy [3],
  • SPIRE – Sustainable Process Industry through Resource and Energy Efficiency [4],
  • European Roadmap for Industrial Process Automation ERIPA [5]

SPIRE is a Public-Private Partnership within Horizon 2020 to develop new technologies, products and services, typically at Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) 4-7. PRONTO is aligned with SPIRE topics KA 2.3 Process monitoring, control and optimization and KA 2.5 New energy and resource management concepts. In ERIPA, relevant priorities are IC1 Instant access to the virtual dynamic factory (modelling and optimization), and IC5 Management of critical knowledge for maintenance. These provide a framework for innovative activity in this Marie Skłodowska-Curie ITN and give evidence that it is addressing relevant topics. As an EID, PRONTO is able to work at TRL 1-5, to the level of validation in an industrial environment.

[2] European Commission, 2014, Enterprise and Industry Sectors Overview, on-line, accessed 21st Oct 2014,

[3] European Commission, 2011, A resource-efficient Europe – Flagship initiative under the Europe 2020 Strategy, Communication from

the Commission to the European Parliament,

[4] SPIRE, 2013, Sustainable Process Industry, Multi-Annual Roadmap, pub: European Commission Directorate G Industrial

Technologies, Brussels.

[5] ProcessIT, 2013, European Roadmap for Industrial Process Automation, Ed: P. Lingman, pub: Artemis Industry Association,

Eindhoven, The Netherlands