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Materials

The Materials Team in KTN covers a broad scope of the materials life cycle, from feedstock, processing techniques, design and manufacture, testing, standardisation, resource efficiency and circularity.

Materials

The team has strong engagement with the entire value chain, from academic researchers, materials developers through to end-users who make products from these materials and businesses who manage end-of-product life issues.  We add value in making the connections that matter.

Materials underpin many applications in our economy. Innovative materials science, engineering and technologies make direct and positive impact on economic growth, the environment and quality of life, through improved processes and products, throughout their lifecycle. The impact of materials is forecast to be even greater as businesses respond to the growing trend in electrification of transport, the drive towards net zero emissions and a comprehensive digital economy.

As a team, we work with industry to make sure that new developments in materials find a useful home to improve the UK economy, environment and quality of life. We bring together the materials supply chain to accelerate innovation, improve productivity and ensure resilience in meeting the needs of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and end users.

Our current focus in this area

UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN)

The UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN) aims to bring together the diverse users of plastic products and realise the best means for reducing plastic waste entering the environment through a programme of networking and knowledge-sharing events and related support activities.

Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging

The Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging activity at KTN is proactively driving engagement and collaboration as part of the core programme of the UKRI ISCF Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge (SSPP).

Foundation Industries

Situated in our industrial heartlands, these sectors include metals, ceramics, glass, chemicals, paper and cement, producing 28m tonnes of material per year, and are worth £52bn annually to the UK economy.

Composites

Composite Materials consist of two different materials different physical and chemical properties. When they are combined, they create a composite material which has superior properties to the original two materials.

Technical Textiles

Textiles are everywhere in modern society. Technical Textiles are defined as materials and products manufactured primarily for their technical and performance properties rather than their aesthetic or decorative characteristics.

2D Materials

Graphene and other novel two-dimensional (2D) materials have sustained strong interest from academia and industry owing to their unique combination of material properties. These properties, which include strength, thermal and electrical conductivity, are found to be superior to those exhibited by other advanced materials.

Metamaterials

Metamaterials are artificial composite materials, engineered to exhibit unique electromagnetic properties. Metamaterial devices are poised to grow to $10.7 billion globally by 2030 in 5G networks, autonomous vehicles, connected vehicles, and more.

Smart Functional Materials

Smart Functional Materials are defined as those materials that change significantly one or more of their physical or chemical native properties when subjected to changes in their environment, thus rendering them stimuli-responsive.

Ceramics & Glass

Ceramics and glass materials exhibit high strength, high elastic modulus and are electrical and thermal insulators. Advanced ceramics and glasses are engineered to optimise its mechanical, electrical, magnetic and optical properties.

Funding Opportunities

iX challenge: Alternative Adhesives for Automated Insert Fixtures on Spacecraft

This iX challenge competition, delivered by Innovate UK KTN, is supporting Airbus to identify innovative adhesives that can be used to adhere insert fixings to satellites.

Opens: 13/12/2021 Closes: 11/02/2022

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Novel energy storage for sea and land based applications

The Innovate UK KTN Innovation Exchange programme is working alongside a British multinational company that is trying to overcome a significant challenge related to energy storage. To help address this challenge, the company is looking for solution providers across the research and innovation ecosystem.

Opens: 10/01/2022 Closes: 21/02/2022

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iX challenge: Recycled Aluminium Conductor Cable

An InnovateUK KTN Innovation Exchange client is seeking innovative approaches to rapidly recycling and reusing aluminium alloy cables as a high voltage conductor.

Opens: 13/12/2021 Closes: 18/02/2022

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Events

Thu
5
Nov
2020

Engage with…Department for International Trade: mine to magnet-supply chains for critical material

15.00 - 16.00 | Online

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Tue
15
Mar
2022

Global Research & Innovation in Plastics Sustainability (GRIPS) 2022

09.00 - 16.30 | Online

Register for this event

Tue
16
Mar
2021

Global Research and Innovation in Plastics Sustainability (GRIPS) 2021

09.00 - 17.00 | Online

Watch Now

News

10.12.2021

Global Research & Innovation in Plastics Sustainability (GRIPS) 2022

Global Research & Innovation in Plastics Sustainability (GRIPS) is back for 2022, organised by the UK Circular Plastics Network & Innovate UK KTN. Registration is open for delegates and exhibitors.

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04.01.2022

Apply now for the Faraday Battery Challenge Investment Programme 2022

Last year Innovate UK and Innovate UK KTN ran the first Faraday Battery Challenge Investment Readiness Programme, with every single SME in the 2021 cohort seeing a positive outcome ranging from investment to partnership opportunities. If you’re an SME in the electric vehicle battery sector, apply now for the 2022 programme!

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