Driving the Project to Prototype to Product cycle is a shared partnership model based on stage-gated project development using Technology Readiness Level (TRL) concepts.


Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) 

 TRL 1     Basic principles observed or reported   Concept
 TRL 2  Technology concept or application formulated  
 TRL 3     Analytical and experimental proof of concept   Laboratory
 
 TRL 4   
 Laboratory validation and initial value proposition  
 TRL 5     System model tested in simulated or realistic environment    Realistic
World 
 TRL 6     System model tested on end user site with refinement of positive value proposition  
 TRL 7     System prototype demonstrated on end user site   Real
World
 TRL 8     Commercially relevant system deployed on end user site with proven value proposition
 
 TRL 9
   Actual system proven reliable through operation    Real Business

 

Description & requirements

 TRL 1

   

Basic principles observed or reported

Lowest level of technology maturation. At this level scientific research begins to be translated in applied R&D.

         

 TRL 2

Technology concept or application formulated

 

Once basic physical principles are observed then at the next level or maturation practical applications of those characteristics can be invented or identified. At this level, the application is still speculative: there is not experimental proof or detailed analysis to support the conjecture.

         

 TRL 3 

Analytical and experimental proof of concept

 

At this step in the maturation process, active R&D is initiated. This must include both analytical studies to set the technology into an appropriate content and lab-based studies to physically validate the analytical predictions. These studies and experiments should constitute POC validation of the applications/concepts formulated at TRL 2.

         

 TRL 4 

 

Laboratory validation and initial value proposition

 

Following successful POC work, basic technology elements must be integrated to establish they will work together to achieve concept-enabling levels of performance for a component. This validation must support the earlier concept and should be consistent with the requirements of potential system applications. The validation is low-fidelity compared to the eventual system – it could be composed of ad hoc discrete components in a lab. 

         

 TRL 5 

System model tested in simulated or realistic environment

 

Fidelity of the components being tested has to increase significantly. The basic technology elements or models must be integrated with reasonably realistic supporting elements so that total applications (component-level, sub-system level, or system level) can be tested in a realistic environment. 

         

 TRL 6 

System model tested on end user site with refinement of positive value proposition

 

A Major step in the level of fidelity following completion of TRL5. At TRL6 a representative model/prototype system/system must be tested in an end user site environment. This typically results in enhancements. Potential commercial partners will have been identified or already engaged. 

         

 TRL 7 

System prototype demonstrated on end user site

 

A significant step beyond TRL6 requiring an actual system prototype demonstration on end user site. The prototype should be near or at scale of planned operations system and deployment with commercial partners involved. 

         

 TRL 8 

Commercially relevant system deployed on end user site with proven value proposition

 

In almost all cases this is the end of true system development for most technology elements. This can include integration of new technology into an existing system. Outcome is commercial manufacture and site uptake.

         

 TRL 9

Actual system proven reliable through operation

 

In almost all cases the end of last bug fixing aspects of true system development such that it is ready for routine implementation. This does not include planned product improvement. 

 

CRC ORE's projects are delivered across five key portfolio areas, taking technologies through the TRL 1-9 scale of technology maturity, often referred to as ‘prototype to product

The first four key portfolio areas represent the early stages of the Technology Readiness Level scale, focussing on TRL3-5 activities. This involves taking technology concepts through analytical and experimental proof of concept into laboratory or desk-top validation and to an early prototype stage, which is suitable for further refinement and testing under realistic world conditions. The fifth area is CRC ORE's utilisation projects. Through its collaborative partnerships, CRC ORE undertakes testing of technologies at mine sites around the world as the platform for its research and development. This is aimed at progressing technologies through TRL 5-9.

 

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