Our Enterprise Hub members create groundbreaking innovations in a widely diverse range of fields, from nanotechnology to wind turbines, physical rehabilitation to counterfeiting protection and much, much more.
Here you can find out about our members and mentors, their experience of our programmes and how the Enterprise Hub has helped move innovative new technologies from concept to market.
Our prestigious programmes run throughout the year: if you are interested in finding out more about how the Enterprise Hub might benefit you, please find out how to become a member here
“I believe the Enterprise Hub provides a terrific opportunity to bring to bear the unique talents and networks of our Fellowship to address an area of real national need.”
The Enterprise Hub’s membership is made up of some of the UK’s most promising and innovative entrepreneurs and researchers. But don't just take our word for it. Read more about our members and their projects here, and see for yourself how Enterprise Hub members who have been supported by our programmes are changing their sectors, engineering, technology and indeed the world.
InspiWave is a non-invasive monitoring device developed by Dr Phi Anh Phan, along with Professor Andrew Farmery at the University of Oxford. It can be used to help people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD) and other lung diseases.
COPD is a debilitating lung disease that affects 1.2 million in the UK. With nearly two thirds of cases thought to be undiagnosed, InspiWave has the potential to improve COPD diagnosis rates and address the need for bedside monitoring across the treatment pathway.
With its ability to monitor lung function and pulmonary blood flow, InspiWave may help those with other lung conditions; for example, it could support intensive care patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome by providing real-time bedside monitoring information. It also aims to provide vital information to improve fluid management for patients undergoing high-risk surgeries. InspiWave achieves both functions non-invasively, which can result is a more comfortable treatment experience for patients.
Medical trials are underway to demonstrate InspiWave’s effectiveness in a range of treatment scenarios and help with targeting this device for use within the NHS. Funding has also been secured from the National Institute for Health Research Invention for Innovation programme.
Dr Anh Phan has been awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship to develop InspiWave and support his startup, Intelligent RespiLabs.
Over 2.3 million trade workers in the UK are using outdated knee supports that lack flexibility, durability and sufficient support. This leaves them at greater risk of long-term damage caused by kneeling. Victoria Hamilton’s father is a joiner who was at risk, and she responded to his wish for something better by engineering the next generation of knee supports
Tests by the University of Strathclyde’s bioengineering department have shown that Recoil Knee Pads provide a 76% pressure reduction on the knee, a 20% improvement over existing competitors. This is achieved through a patent-pending spring technology that sandwiches springs between two layers of support. The result is that pressure is better absorbed and spread more evenly. This enables a degree of cushioning that not only prevents knee damage, but also helps those with existing knee problems to kneel more comfortably.
By incorporating a 360° pivot mechanism, Victoria has created a knee pad that moves more naturally with the knee. User tests have also demonstrated the pad’s long-term durability. The keen pads are sold online, including on Amazon, and a base of repeat customers is emerging. Customer and industry-led feedback has also highlighted opportunities to develop sub-products based on the modular design and tailor these for specific trades.
Victoria was awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship supported by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 to further develop the business by recruiting to her team and expanding capacity for manufacturing the knee pads in the UK.
All sports fans will ask the question: if you can’t be at the game, what is the next best thing? Rob Oldfield, Co-Founder of Salsa Sound, has developed a next-generation sound production tool that transforms what viewers hear and creates a more engaging viewing experience for live broadcast sport.
The Salsa Sound system exploits emerging developments in object-based audio to generate improvements in sound production. Initially developed for football, its intelligent tracking system allows each kick, header and blow of the referee’s whistle to be captured, wherever they happen on the pitch. By using algorithms for sound recognition, Salsa instantaneously brings a sharper focus to the sounds that matter. This gives viewers a more immersive and engaging sound experience, regardless of the device they are watching it on.
The advantages are not just for viewers. Salsa replaces broadcasters’ need for labour-intensive manual mixing, simplifying the process with algorithms for real-time sound location and mixing. It can also remove unwanted sounds, such as swearing or inappropriate crowd noises.
With no direct competitors, Salsa is well situated to bring its transformative techniques to the high-value sports broadcasting market, which continually invests in improving sports coverage. Working prototypes have already captured the interest of large broadcasting companies and there are plans to adapt it for other sports in the future.
Rob was awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship to help develop his business plan and launch his startup company Salsa Sound.
“The Enterprise Hub has stewarded the growth of my startup, particularly helping me to develop my business strategy. It really understands the challenges for an academic starting a business.”
Fabiano Mistano is the Chief Automotive Engineer at Onlicar, a fleet management and vehicle monitoring service that uses the expertise of Formula 1 and the aerospace industry to monitor vehicles. Its integrated systems improve performance and save money by combining engineering, software development and simulation.
The system uses a data analytics platform that is powered by artificial intelligence and connected car technology such as dongles and smartphone apps. It can use vehicle engine information to digitally diagnose and provide a health score for vehicles. Onlicar fleet management products range from tracking of small fleets to automated decision-making for those with more than 500 vehicles. The technology is encrypted and customisable.
Bringing ideas to life has always been restricted by the awkward transition from three-dimensional (3D) thoughts to two-dimensional methods of design. However, Oluwaseyi, Co-Founder of Gravity Sketch, is working on an easier way. His novel software lets people effortlessly sketch and develop concepts in mid-air.
Gravity Sketch allows users to conceptualise their thoughts using only gestures and touch, and without having to learn complex computer-aided design (CAD) programs. By exploiting emerging opportunities in immersive technology, such as virtual reality, the software creates a new, simple way to craft digital 3D content.
The team at Gravity Sketch places a strong emphasis on the user experience and is committed to creating useful, time-saving tools for designers and engineers. The software has attracted interest from the automotive industry with adaptations tailored for this market that allow designers to create freely, while improving the quality of information received by technicians. This ability to be seamlessly integrated into real-world engineering workflows sets Gravity Sketch apart from alternatives in the digital 3D design space.
The product’s adaptability makes it a powerful addition anywhere that art, design and engineering intersect. It was recently launched online and has sparked interest from users in a diverse range of industries, from computer-generated imagery (CGI) to furniture design.
Seed funding and support from Innovate UK have already been awarded to support developments at Gravity Sketch. Oluwaseyi was awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship to help him bring the product to market.
“Not only has the Enterprise Hub opened me up to new professional networks, it has also helped me to readily access knowledge that is accelerating our efforts to bring our innovation to market."
Paul Botterill is a director at REACT Engineering, a company that develops innovative engineering solutions to address the challenges faced by the UK nuclear industry, including decommissioning and waste management. The impact of nuclear waste on the environment can be minimised by using careful engineering.
REACT hopes to provide long-term benefits to the environment by improving nuclear clean-up, using problem-driven processes to deliver engineering concepts. Through an understanding of nuclear processes and operations, REACT helps with implementation strategies, plant modification proposals, waste characterisation and safety methods.
A desire to help create sustainable and resilient cities led Arthur Kay to develop bio-bean, the first company to industrialise the recycling process for spent coffee grounds and transform them into advanced biofuels and biochemicals.
With over 500,000 tonnes of spent coffee grounds going to waste in the UK every year, Arthur recognised them as a valuable, and abundant, resource. They are highly calorific and packed with the right compounds to be a source of sustainable energy.
The company slots neatly into pre-existing waste and energy processes, and works closely with waste-management companies to get spent coffee grounds to their large-scale recycling factory. As a result, the award-winning clean technology company already collects thousands of tonnes yearly from offices, transport hubs and coffee shops, including Costa Coffee.
The used coffee grounds are then transformed into sustainable, high-performance products, such as biomass pellets for heating buildings, and the company’s first consumer product ‘Coffee Logs’ for use at home in stoves and fires.
Rapid growth has enabled the company to build its capacity to recycle up to 50,000 tonnes of used coffee grounds each year, which has significantly reduced the amount that ends up in landfill. By engaging in extensive research, bio-bean now plans to expand its range of advanced carbon-neutral biofuels and biochemicals for commercial use.
For many, musical expression can be frustrated by an inability to play an instrument. As CEO of the startup Vochlea Music (VM), innovator George Wright is hoping to change that by developing an audio engine with the capacity to understand vocally produced sounds and turn these into live instrumentation.
By identifying that our voices can be a first step toward musical exploration, George has developed an audio engine that employs machine-learning algorithms to recognise sounds. This enables the VM audio engine to learn its user voice and turn ‘wah-wahs’ into guitar riffs, and beatboxing into vibrant percussion.
Unlike alternative software that is able to recognise just pitch, the VM audio engine works with vocal nuances to recreate a fuller, higher quality representation of sound that also matches pitch, timbre and tone. In doing so, it helps amateur and professional music producers alike to creatively prototype new sounds and songs.
VM is continuing to develop tools powered by the audio engine while working in collaboration with Abbey Road Studios. The software and tools have potential to be licensed for use in a range of markets from mobile gaming market to high-end music production. Meanwhile, the company is ready to launch the VM Apollo, a smart microphone marketed to the amateur enthusiast, and testing has revealed high interest among the early-adopter crowd.
George was awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship supported by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 to further develop VM and support his work to bring technologies powered by it to market.
Flexypix is a startup dedicated to unlocking the potential of flexible plastic displays that can be integrated into glass windows. This will enable them to switch from transparent to opaque to provide privacy or reflect unwanted heat. Contemporary environmentally-led design will benefit from being able to incorporate smart surfaces that can adapt to, and enhance, our indoor environments.
Founded by Dr Chris Williamson, these displays use a liquid-crystal-based material that can be switched on demand in seconds. The technology does not require constant power, and testing has shown that it is up to 10 times cheaper to both purchase and maintain, which makes it both energy efficient and more responsive to user control.
The displays are flexible in more ways than one; ultra-thin, plastic panels can be seamlessly retro-fitted to existing surfaces, or integrated within materials such as glass during manufacture. They can also be tailored to display company logos or other custom imagery, and change between these at the flick of a switch.
The manufacturing process is being developed with a view to establishing continuous mass production. The aim is to access part of the global commercial indoor window market, which was valued at $30 billion in 2015. The rapid growth of the sector reflects increasing interest in smart glass for architecture, and its potential to make significant contributions to sustainable design and helping buildings to meet environmental targets.
Chris was awarded a 2017 Enterprise Fellowship to spin out his business, continue testing and upscale the manufacturing process.
An unparalleled level of access to the expertise of the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Fellowship is a key benefit of being an Enterprise Hub member. With experience spanning the entire engineering and technology spectrum, the Fellows provide bespoke support and mentoring to Hub members. Mentors typically give at least one day a month to advise Hub members on business strategy, helping facilitate valuable connections, networking and practical support. The Enterprise Hub team connects members with the most appropriate mentor based on industry sector, stage of business cycle and any unique issues that need to be addressed. So far over a hundred Fellows have pledged their time in support of our programmes, and continue to be committed to help our members succeed.
Douglas has a 40 year business career covering almost every aspect, at every level, of healthcare technology product design and product commercialisation processes.
Having trained in Industrial Design Engineering (Edinburgh Napier University 1974), Douglas progressed from hands on designer to the management of design in the high tech arena.
Using his company Crombie Anderson as a base for innovation and incubation, he subsequently spun out three other high-tech start -up companies of which two became publicly traded business operating in medical fields.
Douglas is the prime mover in these businesses by leading both the innovation and commercialisation processes, including raising over £40million in private and institutional funding. Today he is internationally recognised for his innovation and entrepreneurial experience and is a regular keynote speaker at healthcare and business congresses around the world.
In 1990, his 5yr old son Leif suffered a spontaneous retinal detachment that went undetected until it was too late to treat. Douglas was struck by the limited capability of diagnostic tools available to clinicians and decided to address this issue. He built a dedicated research team, which led to the formation of Optos plc, a business funded by Archangel from the outset.
Optos succeeded in designing and patenting a scanning laser ophthalmoscope: the world's first ophthalmic device that enabled eye care practitioners to capture a digital ultra wide-field image of the retina in a single scan. The new method of examining the retina, marketed as the optomap® Retinal Exam, is now offered as the preferred standard of care by 11,500 eye-care specialists in Europe and the US. Over 70 million optomap® retinal exams have been conducted worldwide already, with a scanning range of approximately 82 per cent of the retina - a huge improvement on the 5-30% of conventional examination techniques.
Douglas was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (FREng) in 2013.
Richard Brook is an experienced angel investor with technology expertise in the field of measurement, instrumentation and control systems. He has over forty years of experience in developing new instrumentation and applications for use in various sectors including manufacturing, space and defence.
He is Co-founder of the investment company E-synergy which has invested in over a hundred companies to date. Richard is also a Director of NPL Management Ltd (the UK’s National Physical Laboratory), and past Chairman of a number of Advisory Boards and Committees for policy development and funding activities in the UK’s Space and academic research sectors.
Richard is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (1998), He was appointed OBE in 2004 for services to Higher Education and the UK Space Industry.
“During my time at E-Synergy, I have invested a significant amount of time in mentoring entrepreneurs and preparing companies for investment. The mentoring support I’m providing at the Academy is a natural extension of this, and I’m looking forward to helping some fascinating projects to reach their full market potential.”
Saeed is Technical Director at the prosthetic manufacturer Blatchford, winners of the 2016 RAEng MacRobert Award.
He has built a highly successful career based on outstanding innovation, product development and scientific research in the field of prosthetics. His work saw the company shortlisted for the Royal Academy of Engineering MacRobert Award in 2010.
Saeed has provided invaluable advice to emerging innovators in his field, such as negotiating with investors, creating new business cases and establishing alternative investment return strategies, IP issues, and how to identify new needs and opportunities in the market to develop a road map of future products.
He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (FREng) in 2012.
Roger retired from full-time employment 2003. Since retiring he has been a part time consultant in world-class performance, working with the NDA and other organisations. In addition he has been a Chairman/Director of four University spin-out companies: PAROS, Perceptive Engineering Ltd, Industrial Tomography Systems and TDL Sensors Ltd, which he recently sold. When requested he is also an assessor for Innovate UK, EPSRC and EU projects.
Roger has been a Judge for the UK Best Factory Awards for over 20 years. During that period he has visited and benchmarked over 200 of the best UK Manufacturing Plants across all industries.
Over a 35-year industrial career Roger worked for ICI. Positions included Chief Engineer of ICI Engineering Technology and Head of the Global Control / Electrical Function. He created and managed the ICI internal Manufacturing Technology capability. In 1993 he was seconded to the DTI Innovation Unit for 2 years where he coordinated and published the “Winning Report”. For the last four years of his career he was acquired by ABB where he was the Global Technology Programmes for ABB Analytics and Advanced Solutions, and an Executive member of ABB Process Solutions.
In 1999 he was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. He has published over 80 papers, and given many presentations on Innovation, Process Control, Benchmarking, World-Class manufacturing and the future of the Process Industries. In 1999 Roger wrote and published the IChemE book, “Benchmarking Process Manufacturing”. It is still the only book on the subject. He has been a Visiting Professor to three UK Universities.
Ian is known worldwide as an authority on microdisplay technology, systems and applications. He describes himself as an "academic, innovator and entrepreneur."
Today he is employed by the University of Edinburgh as its Head of the Institute for Integrated Micro and Nano Systems (IMNS) and also acts as an independent consultant with pre-spin-out technology projects and early stage technology companies. He was a force in the pre-spin-out stage of Sofant; is Chairman of PureVLC; advisor to Holoxica and has mentored the management at Optoscribe.
Ian is an Associate Editor of the Journal of the Society for Information Display and sits on the technical program committee of the International Solid State Circuits Conference, the International Displays Research Conference and the Society for Information Display's Annual International Symposium.
His specialities include: electronic information displays, photonic and optoelectronic devices, components and systems.
Recent personal recognition includes Ernst & Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year, Scotland (2003); Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (2004); Gannochy Medal for Innovation winner (2004); Fellow of the Institute of Physics (2008); Appointed to the Scottish Science Advisory Council (2008) and elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (FREng) in 2008.
Bill is a leading scientist worldwide in the field of Medical Materials. His major research contributions have been recognised by numerous international awards, medals and memberships.
He has been the Professor of Medical Materials at the University of Cambridge; served as Director of Cambridge Pfizer Institute for Pharmaceutical Materials Science; Cambridge Director of CMI Interdisciplinary Research Cluster in Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering and Director of University of London Interdisciplinary Research Centre (IRC) in Biomedical Materials. He has been Head of Department, Dean, and Governor at Queen Mary University of London.
He has been the editor of the Journal of The Royal Society: Interface, the Journal of Materials Science: Materials in Medicine, the Journal of Materials Science, and of the Journal of Materials Science Letters.
Bill is Emeritus Professor of Medical Materials in the University of Cambridge. He is internationally recognised for his pioneering research contributions to biomaterials for medical devices, with awards including the Royal Academy of Engineering Prince Philip Gold Medal; the Royal Society Armourers and Brasiers Company Medal; the Kelvin Medal; the European Society for Biomaterials George Winter Award; the Japanese Society for Biomaterials Medal; the Institute of Materials Griffiths Medal and Chapman Medal; the UK Society for Biomaterials President's Prize; the Acta Metallurgica H.H. Holloman Award and the International Union for Physical Sciences and Engineering in Medicine Award of Merit.
Professor Bonfield's exceptional interdisciplinary contribution has been recognised by his election to all three UK National Academies as a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS), a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (FREng) and a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci).
Professor Roger Whatmore’s main research interests and expertise are in the field of Functional Materials, particularly ferroelectrics, multiferroics and their applications.
After receiving a 1st class honours from Cambridge University, he carried out his PhD research at the Cavendish Laboratory, subsequently joining Plessey Research at Caswell in 1976. In 1993 he led the team which won the Prince of Wales Award for Innovation for the development of a wearable thermal imager for firefighters and GEC recognised his contributions through the award of their Nelson Gold Medal in the same year. The technology underpinning this formed the basis of a very successful company, Infrared Integrated Systems Ltd.
In 1994, he moved to Cranfield University, as the Royal Academy of Engineering Professor of Engineering Nanotechnology, where he established a team applying ferroelectric materials to the areas of microsystems and nanotechnology, and becoming Head of Advanced Materials.
In January 2006, he took up the post of CEO at the Tyndall National Institute, part of University College Cork, Ireland, which is internationally respected for the high quality research in the areas of photonics, micro-nanoelectronics, electronic systems, functional materials and nanotechnology, underpinned by excellence in theoretical modelling and design. Under his direction the influence, financial status and academic status of Tyndall increased dramatically and a Science Foundation Ireland instigated international review body concluded that “Tyndall is an indispensable national resource”.
Professor Whatmore is a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (2001), the Institute of Physics, IOM3 and the Irish Academy of Engineering. He retired as Tyndall’s CEO in 2012 and was made an Emeritus Professor of University College Cork. In 2014, he became a Senior Research Investigator in the Department of Materials, Imperial College London.
Andrew is the Chief Executive of the Sir Henry Royce Institute for Advanced Materials which aims to be a being a world-leading centre for advanced materials research and commercialisation He also serves on the board of Consort Medical Plc as a Non-Executive Director and is Non-Executive Chairman of mOm Incubators ltd. In addition, Andrew is an independent advisor to CEME Spa, a leading manufacturer of fluid control components for household and industrial appliances backed by Investcorp.
Previously, Dr Hosty was Chief Operating Officer at Morgan Advanced Materials Plc, an appointment he held from February 2013 until January 2016. Before this, he held a number of senior positions within Morgan Advanced Materials Plc, including as Chief Executive Officer of Morgan Ceramics and served on the Morgan Advanced Materials plc board in from July 2010 to January 2016. Previously, Dr Hosty was a non-executive director of Fiberweb plc from 2012 to 2013.
He is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, holds a Ph.D. from the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Sheffield and is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (2011).
Norman has researched a wide variety of microwave and optical devices during his career. He has published some 70 scientific papers and patents while at the Royal Signals and Radar Establishment (now Qinetiq Malvern).
He is currently the Chief Executive of Catalyst Inc. (formerly Northern Ireland Science Park). It is a peer-driven network providing support for entrepreneurs and innovators, and a project he guided from initial concept to realisation.
Norman chairs the Advisory Board of the Institute of Electronics, Communications and CatTechnology (ECIT) at The Queen’s University of Belfast and is also a visiting Professor at the University of Ulster. He is Deputy Chairman of Matrix, the Northern Ireland Science Industry strategy group, and chairs the steering board of the NI Composite Centre. He has been Vice President (Business and Innovation) of the Institute of Physics and Honorary President of the Association for Science Education in Northern Ireland.
In 2011, he was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. He is an Enterprise Committee member and steering group chair for the Enterprise Hub. He has mentored many engineers at the Hub on projects that helped store renewable energy; conserve the black rhino in South Africa, and to extend the life of our ageing national grid infrastructure. Norman leads the Academy’s ‘Engineering SMEs Leaders’ programme, which awards training support and short-term mentoring for engineering SMEs. In 2012, Norman was awarded an OBE for his contributions to science and economic development.
"(Engineering) entrepreneurs are typically rich with ideas, energy and enthusiasm but cash poor. They cannot afford the quality help they need to find the right business model for their idea, discovery or invention. Pro Bono support from Fellows from their experience and from their “black books” helps speed the process and leads to increased innovation.”
Meet the innovators and innovations, members and projects that received early support from the Enterprise Hub. Many of these projects have gone on to achieve incredible success, recognition, market share and international awards. The work of our members are, without exaggeration, changing the world and the lives of people everywhere.
Janice is co-Founder and Director of the Institute of Bio-sensing Technology (IBST) at the University of West England where she and her team have developed a new food safety bio-sensing test kit.
The idea centres on inexpensive technology that is compact, robust and very fast compared to existing procedures.
Using magnetic immunoassay technology, results on food contamination can be returned in less than eight hours. This is significantly quicker than current safety tests that generally take over 27 hours.
Although there were a number of companies interested in licensing the technology, Janice has chosen to launch her own company to pursue the expand this work further.
“Without the Academy’s support I doubt I would have made this step into the commercial world,” Janice says. “I continue to benefit from Enterprise Hub events and initiatives, which expand my knowledge and business relationships.”
Major advances in fabrication techniques now allows the building of new materials and devices on an atomic or molecular scale. These engineered materials can offer great advantages such as increased energy efficiency, strength, antibacterial properties and more. Their potential is vast, and very exciting to a range of industry sectors from medicine to aircraft manufacture.
To use - and continue to advance - the possibilities of these nano-engineered materials requires tools that can efficiently measure and characterise their properties.
Oliver is working to transform high-speed atomic force microscopy (HSAFM) into a diagnostic and fabrication tool to do precisely this.
His work is up to the challenge posed by imaging nano scale structures over sample areas which are industrially relevant. HSAFM is capable of imaging areas several thousand times faster than conventional atomic force microscopy (AFM).
Oliver's research at the University of Bristol will provide a tool to produce terra-pixel sized 3D images of surfaces. It will also be capable of rapidly prototyping nano structures over centimetre-sized areas in a matter of hours.
Mapping, measuring and manufacturing nanostructures via high-speed atomic force microscopy is now a possibility!
Bone substitutes are used by dentists when a patient is missing bone or when more is needed for procedures such as implants.
Niall is a post-doctoral researcher at UCL who worked with Dr Alessia D’Onofrio to produce a new bone graft substitute material called Aerograft. It is a synthetic material both cheaper and more effective than existing bone replacements.
huge advantage AeroGraft provides as a bone graft substitute material
is the ability to control the remodelling rate through changes in
composition and density.
This makes it an extremely novel and advantageous material, which will act as a platform to develop innovative bone grafting solutions in dentistry where clinicians are currently being let down by low levels of osseointegration and poor remodelling rates.
It enables the development of a small number of product compositions that have tailored remodelling rates that perfectly meet the demands of dental oral surgeons.
Aerograft could facilitate bone integration in nearly 600,000 dental operations worldwide each year.
Very little innovation has been made in this field over the past five decades, so Aerograft presents a significant and overdue improvement to bone substitutes.
Fake products are a major problem affecting a range of commercial interests and industries, from designer goods to medicine.
While he was a Research Associate in the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge, Daniel and his team developed an innovative anti-counterfeiting and brand authentication technology using lasers printed by standard inkjet printers.
Using low-cost, scalable print processing this new printed laser technology created truly unique optical signatures that can be applied to products. The technology can be used in a number of ways and can even combine multiple security elements within the same printed packaging, whether it be overt or aesthetic features or more discreet elements.
Daniel realised that this would be invaluable to industries affected by counterfeiting and fraud. He founded the spin-out ilumink to further develop new approaches for physical authentication using these breakthroughs in printable laser technology. Shortly after his Enterprise Fellowship, Damian's company ilumink was acquired by Tracerco.
“The Enterprise Hub will be a focal point for my future activities, even when the Fellowship’s direct support has finished. The wealth of experience and networks, for example, will continue to be invaluable.”
Daniel has pioneered an innovative approach to the creation of sound barriers and noise reduction through the use of award-winning acoustic panel technology.
This SonoBARRIER™ technology utilises innovative acoustic metamaterial structures. Unlike conventional barriers that reflect or absorb sound energy, the sound is cancelled out. It is not reflected back to the source.
Daniel is the Co-Founder and CEO of Loughborough University spin-out Sonobex Ltd, which supplies bespoke sound barriers to major civil infrastructure organisations involved in transport, industrial and energy developments.
“The business development training provided by the Academy offers maximum potential for the project to transfer from an idea into a viable business. It gave a very detailed appraisal of the project so far and provided very beneficial support, training and constructive feedback.”
Photocatalysts work by harvesting energy from ambient light to initiate a useful chemical reaction - such as destroying bacteria or pollutants.
Antibacterial plastic films, sunburn warning indicators, water purifying bags, rust-removing inks, flexible electronics, self-cleaning paint and fabrics and glass that never fogs up are just some of the innovations that are now possible.
David’s start-up SunCatalyst Laboratories is developing innovative new products that explore how developments in photocatalysts have created a new generation of smart materials.
Laboratories utilises David’s expertise in the application of
photocatalysts to provide an independent testing service to this
growing industry, helping organisations such as Unilever to get their
photocatalyst innovations to market. The photocatalyst industry is only 20 years old and already worth over $1 billion annually.
Working in tandem with PhD student Robert Rudolf, Reuben is developing the first instance of technology that will allow energy consumed by mains connected equipment to be measured without the need for a monitor between the equipment and the wall socket.
The technology uses state of the art sensors with elegant calibration and measurement algorithms.
This has resulted in an innovative new device that is a non-invasive multi-core current clamp which can be fitted around a cable and removed with ease.
This approach removes the need to access sockets and to power down equipment for the fitting process.
“Being involved with the Hub has been extremely useful with its opportunities to network with experienced business owners and entrepreneurs, many of whom have experienced the difficult decisions we are facing numerous times before. There is no question that these opportunities are vital to developing business ideas and raising the profile of our technology.”
Matthew has developed and patented Ultrafast Laser Plasma Implantation (ULPI) as a novel manufacturing platform with his product, Alpin.
ULPI can implant any glass with femtosecond-laser generated plasma – a highly charged and energetic gas, such as one containing optically active elements. This introduces visible or light-activated colouring (e.g. when exposed to UV) to glass.
Using a mask much like a stencil, ULPI can create a pattern upon the surface such as a barcode or branding.
This could have any number of applications such as an anti-counterfeiting measure, made unique for an individual batch or product. It could provide security and authenticity for diverse products such as pharmaceutical, alcohol and perfume bottles. The invention could add a unique selling point to a product as well as limiting the severe health and financial implications of counterfeiting.
Matthew founded Ultramatis Ltd as a spin-out of the University of Leeds to further expand the possibilities of this exciting technology.
Angus is working to ensure transport companies improve margins through better investment in efficiency solutions. An average heavy goods vehicle in the UK uses £42,000 of fuel annually. For haulage companies operating on extremely tight margins averaging between one to three percent, savings on fuel can have a huge effect on their profits.
There are a number of products available on the market designed to improve the efficiency of haulage vehicles, but a lack of evidence of savings on fuel has limited their uptake. Angus established his start-up Dynamon to address this lack of quantifiable data for the haulage industry.
Dynamon combines big data from vehicles with dynamic modelling and statistics in order to give hauliers tailored recommendations on the products that will help them make the greatest savings. It can also be used to help in gauging impact on air quality improvement programmes.
The company has two main products, both of which provide measurements that are far more reliable and accurate than MPG (miles per gallon) or litres per 100km.
The first product, Advanced Fuel Measurement, measures fuel savings from tracking aerodynamics, fuel additives, driver training and regenerative braking. Dynamon’s software links directly to vehicle telematics data and can measure vehicle performance without variables caused by driver behaviour, route, traffic, and vehicle weight.
Dynamon's second product is currently under development. The Fuel Saving Platform utilises a database of fuel saving products to recommend those that provide best return on investment (ROI) for a particular company. This ensures road transport companies invest in the correct fuel saving products based on how they use their vehicles.