UK Funding body Innovate UK has allocated a further £20 million in funding for enterprises developing “disruptive ideas and cutting-edge technologies” that can be adapted into commercial offerings. Previous winners of the funding include a 3D printing specialist.
Only UK-based businesses are eligible to apply for the funding, but they can be of any size. The project must be carried out in the UK and the resulting service or product must be targeted at the UK market. Funding is available for up to £500,000 per applicant.
InnovateUK does not appear particularly prescriptive about the industry vertical or types of technology. As the first requirement for a company’s proposal is simple one that is: “Clearly game-changing and/or disruptive innovative idea leading to new products, processes or services.”
“An idea that is significantly ahead of others in the field, set for rapid commercialisation,” the challenge criteria states.
Projects that have a duration of six to 18 months can apply for funding amounting to £25,000 – £500,000. Enterprises can submit an idea that would run from 19 to 36 months with a maximum fund of £2,000,000, but these projects must be done on a collaborative basis.
UK Funding Award
Peterborough-based 3D printing enterprise Photocentric is a previous winner of a similar Innovate UK funding round, having won the Queen’s award in 2016.
Photocentric is aiming to rapidly reduce the cost of manufacturing via a 3D printer. They have designed a range of 3D printers that use LCD screens to cure the resin, the material that hardens into the chosen printed shape, at a higher resolution and at a lower cost.
Photocentric founder Paul Holt comment in a released statement that: “Today it seems obvious that the highest resolution, largest format and lowest cost digital light source available is the visual display screen we all use in our pockets or on our walls, but it can only work in 3D printing because our photopolymers can harden in light within the visible spectrum.”