The Innovations Club held an Information and Networking Day to launch the new funding call of the Challenge Led Applied Systems Programme (CLASP), which supports the application and commercialisation of STFC research in the four key global research challenge areas identified in the STFC Futures Programme.
STFC External Innovations is now offering £1.5M to fund a range of projects from short feasibility studies to large developmental projects that will use STFC funded research to solve key challenges in the Energy sector.
CLASP is intended to support the de-risking the R&D process for industry through the development of technology demonstrators and industry-ready prototype systems.
Proposals drawing on technology and expertise from the STFC research community are invited. It is expected these will provide a solution to one of the many challenges associated with the challenge area identified and for which there would be a demonstrable potential market.
The event was held in the grand old library of the Science Museum and hosted 80 delegates representing the energy industry, academia and knowledge exchange professionals. STFC Futures team showcased the technologies, capabilities and expertise available in the STFC facilities. Chris Bagley, Director of the Energy Generation and Supply KTN, represented the STFC Energy Focus Group, which brought together energy sector experts to define key technical energy challenge areas that now form the priorities for the CLASP Energy call.
These challenges fall under the headings: Energy Storage, Nuclear Energy, Future Energy Grids, Energy Materials and Sensing and Monitoring (further details are available on the CLASP webpage). Chris also presented the work of the EGS KTN in accelerating innovation in the energy sector.
The second part of the event featured case studies of STFC technology applied to the energy sector. Steve Bennington, CEO of STFC spin-out Cella Energy; Ian Macafee, CEO of STFC spin-out Oxsensis and Peter Lee of the STFC Global Challenge Network in Batteries Science, all presented the story of their venture, the challenges they faced and gave their tips for successful industry-academic collaborations.
The final session included funding information on the CLASP call (this is available, including deadlines for applications) and a lively Q/A session. There was also a great deal of networking as delegates exchanged ideas and briefed one another on their technologies, expertise and plans.