Shortlist announced for Enabling Innovation Zone

Louise Smyth

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. 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, which offers a coolant fluid management solution, iCOMAT, which enables the automated placement of carbon fibre tapes on curved paths, and Texture Jet, 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, 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, an Edinburgh based start-up that has developed drivetrain technology for the electrical pedal assist bicycle market, Holoxica, which specialises in holographic 3D imagery and motion video and Acoustic Camera UK, 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, 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, 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.
 
Advanced Engineering takes place on October 30 to 31, 2019 at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.