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What Are the Most Promising Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage Options for A2A?

  • Award: $20000 USD
  • Challenge type: Ideation
  • Challenge under evaluation

Challenge overview


This Challenge aims to answer the following question: What are the most promising CCUS options for A2A? Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage (CCUS) is an emission reduction technology applied across the energy system. It is an alternative to Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology, since it not only captures and stores CO2 but also converts CO2 into valuable products, such as fuels and chemicals, after transporting it via ship, pipeline, rail or truck. A2A, the Seeker for this Challenge, is asking Solvers to develop a concept paper to explore CCUS technologies and the potential markets for CO2 products to identify the best CCUS technology option or mix of CCUS technologies for A2A, considering its plant portfolio and geographical location presence.

This is an Ideation Challenge with a guaranteed award for at least one submitted solution.



The urgency for policymakers to promote decarbonization through CCUS technologies has rapidly increased. Also, thanks to the implementation of the European Emission Trading Scheme (ETS) that quotes emission permits (EUA) per each ton of CO2 emitted, a market value has been assigned to captured CO2. In particular, CCUS could be used to avoid the payment of emission permits or convert carbon-neutral technologies into carbon-negative ones, increasing the competitiveness of the A2A generation portfolio in a low-emission market.

The A2A portfolio includes Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) plants, which combine gas-fired turbines with steam turbines, Waste-to-Energy (WTE) plants, which convert solid waste to steam by burning it at high temperatures, and biomass/biogas plants in the North and South of Italy.

A2A is interested in exploring the most promising CCUS technology or a mix of CCUS technologies considering its plant portfolio and geographical presence, so the candidate is expected to:

  • Focus on and go in depth into alternative utilization technologies (not capture technologies)
  • Propose one single CCUS technology or a mix of CCUS technologies
  • Leverage only CCUS technologies that have a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) higher than 6 for the short-term application
  • For technologies proposed for short term application, consider suppliers based in EU or with a network of partners in EU
  • Consider both point source and ambient air CCUS technologies

If the proposed strategy to capture and reuse CO2 applies to a point source, the technology should be compatible with A2A emissions sources.

This is an Ideation Challenge, which has the following unique features:

  • There is a guaranteed award.  The award(s) will be paid to the best submission(s) as solely determined by the Seeker. The total payout will be $20,000, with at least one award being no smaller than $5,000 and no award being smaller than $2,500.
  • The Solvers are not required to transfer exclusive intellectual property rights to the Seeker.  Rather, by submitting a proposal, the Solver grants to the Seeker a royalty-free, perpetual, and non-exclusive license to use any information included in this proposal, including for promotional purposes.

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on 17-Feb-2022.
Late submissions will not be considered.

After the Challenge deadline, the Seeker will complete the review process and make a decision with regards to the Winning Solution(s). All Solvers that submit a proposal will be notified on the status of their submissions; however, no detailed evaluation of individual submissions will be provided.



Employees of A2A Group and their families are not eligible to receive awards for this Challenge.


The A2A Group is the largest Italian multi-utility, at the forefront of territorial services and technological solutions. Energy, water and environment are the conditions necessary for everybody’s quality of life. We have been involved in them for over a hundred years, renewing services that are essential for the well-being of people at home, in the office, in the city. We are a real Life Company.


What is InnoCentive?

InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge?

An InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge is a broad question formulated to obtain access to new ideas, similar to a global brainstorm for producing a breakthrough idea or market survey which may include ideas for a new product line, a new commercial application for a current product, or even a viral marketing idea to recruit new customers. Ideation™ Challenge submissions are typically about two written pages, and Seekers receive a non-exclusive, perpetual license to use all submissions.

In an Ideation™ Challenge, Solvers may:

  • Submit ideas of their own
  • Submit third party information that they have the right to use and further the authority to convey that right and the right to use and develop derivative works to Seekers
  • Submit information considered in the public domain without any limitations on use

Solvers should not reveal any confidential information in their submissions. Often the Ideation™ Challenge will be followed by one or more of the other three Challenge types to further develop the ideas and gain Intellectual Property protection when the concept has been well-defined.