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Enabling Technologies

Enabling Technologies are the foundation of today’s digital society; they include electronics, sensors, photonics, RF systems and computing.  Every market sector has increased use of technology to increase performance, extend capability and improve ease of use – from smartphones to medical diagnostics and industrial automation.

An example would be a car – modern cars contain 50 to 100 embedded computers using data from up to 100 sensors.  By 2030 it is expected that 50% of the cost of the car will be electronics and associated technologies.

Within the home we expect fast internet and great WiFi to connect our computers and run our connected devices – from light bulbs or heating thermostats to smart devices such as Alexa. Advances in photonics significantly improves the resolution and quality of TV pictures.

Within the manufacturing sector digitalisation is seen as the key driver for productivity improvement in the UK – automation and monitoring of equipment are built on enabling technologies.

The KTN Enabling Technologies team helps organisations interested in developing, or using, innovative technologies to access funding, expert knowledge and to form collaborations. If you are a business working on innovative products, services or processes we can help you take the next step by connecting you with the right funding, people and expertise. 

Our experts work with businesses of all sizes, from start-ups and spin-outs, to medium sized enterprises and multinational organisations. This includes organisations that are undertaking R&D to generate new, innovative products or services that help the UK economy or deliver social good.

Current focus

Electronics

Electronics is the enabler of all things digital. It is the hardware and embedded software that allows products and processes to communicate, have power, have intelligence and awareness, be controlled, be automated and operate safely. It’s built into many sectors, including health, aerospace, manufacturing and retail.

Photonics

Photonics is the science and technology of light. This includes lasers, optical systems and components, as well as fibre optics. Photonics is a £13.5bn industry in the UK. Photonics technology is used across various UK industries and in society, from optical communications and data storage to laser sensors for autonomous vehicles.

Sensors

Sensor technologies create measurements and convert them into digital data. This data can then be analysed to inform decision making. What’s being measured could be chemical, bological, physical, mechanical or any other quantities such as chemicals, proteins, weight, dimensions and more.

Funding Opportunities

Innovation in time dissemination and application

UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £2 million for business-led innovation in resilient time, frequency and synchronisation.

Opens: 19/04/2021 Closes: 09/06/2021

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KTN-iX challenge: Removal of carbon particles from fuel passages within an installed gas turbine

The Innovation Exchange programme is working alongside a multinational organisation in the gas turbine industry. The business is looking to engage innovators and innovative organisations that can help them solve a significant challenge they are trying to overcome in relation to removing fuel auto-oxidation deposits from internal fuel passages within Inconel injectors without dismantling the unit/components where those passages are located.

Opens: 14/05/2021 Closes: 16/07/2021

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Utility strike avoidance on Highways England network (KTN and i3P Innovation Exchange challenge)

KTN-iX is looking for innovative solutions for avoiding the striking of utility assets during the maintenance and construction of Highways England’s Strategic Road Network. The winning business(es) in this competition will be given an opportunity to present their solutions to a group of major infrastructure clients, and a potential opportunity to deliver a demonstration with Highways England delivery partners.

Opens: 28/05/2021 Closes: 18/06/2021

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Events

Thu
27
Aug
2020

Engaging a Diverse Workforce for the Future (Driving the Electric Revolution)

15.00 - 17.00 | Online

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Tue
29
Sep
2020

Photonics for...Manufacture

10.00 - 12.00 | Online

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Mon
24
May
2021

Trusted Research for Industry Series – Emerging and Enabling, Complex Systems

12.00 - 13.30 | Online

Recording coming soon

News

05.03.2021

The importance of collaboration between academics and industry for commercialising metamaterials

As part of the activities for the Commercialising Metamaterials Innovation Network, we asked Professor Fabrizio Scarpa from University of Bristol to share his experiences and insights of working closely with industry.

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24.03.2021

The Cross-Sector Battery Systems Community Hub has officially launched

We’re delighted to unveil the new online centre for the UK’s battery community – the Cross-Sector Battery Systems Network Hub.

Read more