Enabling Innovation – the shortlist

~ From increased comfort for amputees, to new tech for the e-bike sector ~


The shortlist for the Enabling Innovation Zone at Advanced Engineering, the UK’s largest annual exhibition for manufacturers and supply chain professionals, has been announced by show organisers. The Enabling Innovation Zone aims to support smaller enterprises accelerate their innovations into the advanced manufacturing and technology industries and is supported by Innovate UK/KTN, the Institute for Manufacturing and Innovation DB.


Following previous years’ success, including past Enabling Innovation Zone winner, Aceleron, which was listed in the Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2017, the 2019 year of shortlisted nominees are set to use the platform for accelerating business growth and development.


The 2019 shortlist, which consists of ten small enterprises from across the UK, will each have a dedicated display plinth in the Enabling Innovation Zone, which is a feature area of the Advanced Engineering event.


Nominees include businesses from a range of sectors including; Fluid Maintenance Solutions Ltd, which offers a coolant fluid management solution, iCOMAT, which enables the automated placement of carbon fibre tapes on curved paths, and Texture Jet Ltd, which has developed Surface Texture Adjustment Technology (STAT), a tooling platform that enables users to rapidly produce a variety of surface textures on components.


Kirsty Hinchliffe, Projects and Grant Manager at FeTu Ltd, another of this year’s shortlisted businesses that has developed the first quad-acting compression device said, “we’re at a stage in our business when we’re looking for commercial partners, licensees and early adopters of our technology. Being shortlisted for the Advanced Engineering Enabling Innovation award will support us on our commercial journey.


“The FeTu compander — a combined compressor-expander device — is ideal for a number of applications, including thermal management of electric vehicles, cabin cooling and air conditioning, all of which are industries that are showcased at Advanced Engineering,” Hinchliffe added. “The ability to showcase our compander from the Enabling Innovation Zone will help us begin conversations with potential customers and investors alike.”


Other nominees that have been shortlisted include Intra Drive Ltd, an Edinburgh based start-up that has developed drivetrain technology for the electrical pedal assist bicycle market, Holoxica Ltd, which specialises in holographic 3D imagery and motion video and Acoustic Camera UK Ltd, which has produced the world’s first portable, splash-proof, battery-powered acoustic camera that captures the equivalent of thermal imaging for sound sources.


ES Precision Ltd, which has developed lasers to perforate the inner liners of prosthetic limbs, making them more comfortable for users, has also been shortlisted, alongside Optima3D Technology Ltd, which designs and manufactures equipment that enables 3D weaving of composite materials, as well as a team from the University of Nottingham that has developed a handheld, touchscreen device incorporating machine vision and artificial intelligence (AI) learning platform.


“The companies that have been shortlisted for the 2019 Enabling Innovation Zone truly demonstrate the breadth of innovation and skill from the UK engineering industry,” said Jeremy Whittingham, Head of Marketing at Advanced Engineering. “We’re excited to welcome the companies to the event this year and look forward to announcing the winner.”


Advanced Engineering takes place on October 30 to 31, 2019 at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham.  To meet the shortlisted companies at the Enabling Innovation Zone, register to attend Advanced Engineering by visiting: Advanced Engineering Registration.


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