TWI awarded SPARK grant with the University of Glasgow
TWI, one of Europe’s largest independent research and technology organisations has recently been awarded a £5,000 Strategic Project to Access Research and Knowledge (SPARK) award with the University of Glasgow to characterise near net shape nanocomposites produced by novel solid state mechanical processing of a combination of materials. The collaborative project will be undertaken by TWI and the Kelvin Nanocharacterisation Centre at Glasgow. Near net shape processing is an ideal technology mostly manifested in powder metallurgy as it has exceptionally high materials utilisation and is well suited for rapid production. Powder metallurgy is an environmentally friendly manufacturing route (recognised as a green technology) as secondary processing such as machining is minimised or eliminated. “The successful demonstration and characterisation of the nanocomposites and novel processing will potentially open a number of opportunities across several industry sectors including engineering, chemical, transport and defence”, says Dr. Cem Selcuk (TWI), the initiator of this project.
The market opportunity for particle based nanocomposites is estimated to be globally £3-5 billion and the outcomes from this project will be made available to the TWI membership base. Interested UK based companies will be able to work with TWI to explore further development and commercialisation of this exciting technology for applications that span across business sectors such as automotive, aerospace, construction, defence, recreation and medical.
SPARK Award projects were launched by the Materials KTN, in collaboration with The University of Glasgow and The University of Sheffield to help UK based companies improve their industrial performance through the increased use of technology for product and process innovation. Working with the Materials KTN both universities have made funding available for companies wishing to work with the university for the first time and to undertake initial technology based projects.
Based on the strength of their research excellence in nanotechnology and advanced materials, The University of Glasgow and The University of Sheffield have both been awarded EPSRC funded Knowledge Transfer Accounts; designed to address the barriers associated with the commercialisation of research outputs. The aim of the KTA is to increase engagement with industrial partners looking to adopt materials technology into their business in order to increase the volume of research outputs that have a positive impact on society and the UK economy.