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Since 2007, Innovate UK has invested around £2.5bn to help businesses across the country to innovate, with match funding from industry taking the total value of projects above £4.3bn. 

Innovate UK has helped 8,500 organisations create around 70,000 jobs and added an estimated £18bn of value to the UK economy. In the period 2019/2020, Innovate UK received 5,794 applications for grant funding and made 949 awards. £645,886 was awarded in terms of grant funding, 24% of the total amount applied for.

Moley Robotics Limited Industry Sector: Robotics 

Moley Robotics Limited is a robotics company headquartered in London. 

In May 2015 Moley Robotics revealed its Robotic Kitchen: the world’s first fully automated and intelligent cooking robot. Launched at the Hannover Messe trade-show in Germany, then presented at the world’s biggest consumer electronics show, CES (Shanghai), the system mimics the actions of a master chef precisely, bringing a variety of dishes cooked to world-class standards to the domestic and commercial kitchen. 

Moley applied to Innovate UK for grant funding for feasibility studies to seek to address the technical and commercial limitations of the current demonstrator. While it successfully proved feasibility, the modules used were too bulky or expensive for a volume product. Key elements not required in feasibility will be developed. Moley is taking tried and tested robotics beyond the factory floor 

and into kitchen refurbishments, residential new-builds, restaurants, hotels and age-care facilities. 

Moley was successful in the application and received £297,270 by way of funding. 

Myriofoam Limited Industry Sector: Electronics 

Myriofoam Limited, a spin-off company from the University of Cambridge, applied to Innovate UK for grant funding to enable feasibility studies to be carried out into new technology to assist with the thermal management of consumer electronic devices. 

Heat pipes are the technology of choice for the thermal management of laptops, high end cell phones, and several aerospace applications. 

This technology has not evolved sufficiently fast to keep up with the cooling requirements of modern computer chips and as a result, computer chips are now programmed to limit their computing power to avoid thermal damage. 

The core material used in current heat pipes relies on thermal sintering of copper powder, which is a slow and energy intensive process and is unable to satisfy the cooling requirements of modern electronic devices. 

Myriofoam seeks to optimize and scale-up a disruptive new metal foam to capture a share of the rapidly growing heat pipe market. 

The heat pipe technology developed is a manufacturing process that is faster, less energy intensive, allows for the fabrication of thinner heat pipes with new form factors, and, importantly, enables a step-improvement in performance of commercial devices that have not seen significant changes in four decades. 

Myriofoam was successful in the application and received £69,630 by way of funding. 

Photocentric Limited Industry Sector: 3D printing 

Photocentric Limited, a Peterborough based company that is an innovator in photopolymer, applied to Innovate UK for grant funding to support feasibility studies into the development of a full-sized metal container housing a rapid manufacturing solution. 

A full-sized metal container that can make any plastic part one wants, instantly delivered to the point of need whether it be a factory or a hospital is the aim of this project. 

Photocentric aims to return manufacturing capabilities back to the UK and do it by using the high-tech new nature of 3D printing. 

Photocentric states that the project will enable the UK to make plastic items again in scale and at low cost- all created from this factory in a box. The factory can be delivered anywhere to manufacture any plastic items in scale at the point of need. 

The factory will contain a 3D printer driven by an LCD screen-based 3D printer capable of producing plastics in the widest variety of properties (elastomeric, durable, hard and tough) with inline automatic post processing. 

These shipping containers will be pre-equipped, so they are ready to be moved to any location in the UK, loaded with different liquid resins, capable of providing an instant start up manufacturing solution to make any plastic item by just being transferred a digital file. 

This allows the UK to have an instant, on-demand source of manufactured items. 

Photocentric Limited received £49,989 by way of funding. 

To download a copy of these Electronics case studies, please click here

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