Based in Haverhill, Suffolk, Abtus specialises in the measurement & maintenance of rail-track and associated infrastructure. In July 2015 Abtus began a KTP with the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE) in order to extend their existing range of railway inspection products through the development of laser-based technologies.
Blue Sky Bio
Blue Sky Bio is a Chester-based company dedicated to providing ‘full-circle’ product solutions to meet the growing food and waste demands caused by the rising human population. The company has already completed one Knowledge Transfer Secondment project using impact acceleration funds provided by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). This KTP will build upon the earlier work, using large-scale offshore seaweed farms to capture carbon dioxide that is, in turn, converted to methane through anaerobic digestion.
Up and running since April 2015, academics in Civil Engineering and Biosciences are working together to develop this more sustainable means of generating energy.
Cogitare is an infrastructure optimisation consultancy that combines system engineering and economics to advise both public and private sector clients. With London Underground the company has been able to implement a process by which the optimum conceptual design would be arrived at for upgrading power supplies to support new rolling stock. This is estimated as having reduced London Underground’s power infrastructure costs by £0.5 billion.
Cogitare is currently working with the University to develop innovative methods to measure and model real rail capacity, along with validating and improving capacity simulations and simulators. Together with academics from the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE) the project will run until August 2016.
Ionotec is a research company based in Cheshire with 20 years’ experience in the manufacture of ion-conductive ceramics and in high-temperature battery development. In July 2013 the company initiated a KTP jointly with the University’s Chemical Engineering department. The project aims to develop and demonstrate a pilot-scale process for the manufacture of beta alumina ceramics by extrusion.
KUKA Robotics UK Ltd began a KTP with the University in January 2015. Pioneers in robotics and automation technology, KUKA Robotics are one of the leading manufacturers of robotic systems worldwide. Over three years the project will develop a new toolbox of software and algorithms, extending KUKA’s robotics capabilities to include advanced computer vision and vision-based robot control. The project is being delivered in partnership with the University’s Computer Science and Mechanical Engineering schools.
Truflo Marine is part of IMI’s Critical Engineering division, and focuses on small-batch production of specialist naval marine and nuclear valves. Their KTP with the University’s Mechanical Engineering department looks to understand the physics of severe service tribological interactions, thus enabling the development of a substantiated range of valves using new technologies.
Webster & Horsfall
Webster & Horsfall is a 300-year old West Midlands-based SME, specialising in the manufacture of high-value, niche-use wire. Following a successful Accelerating Business-Knowledge Base Innovation Activity project, the company recently entered into a KTP with the University of Birmingham. Together with experts in metallurgy and materials from the University, this KTP will embed a new science-based approach to drawing of wire in new metals and alloys within the company.