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Fast start grant success for six scale-up members

Fast start grant success for six scale-up members

(Image shows the AP Wellness fatigue tracking app)

With support from the Scale-Up Programme, six member companies have secured Innovate UK Fast Start Grants.

Fast Start Grants are only awarded to businesses which have never won Innovate UK funding before, and they are a fast route to boosting cash flow in order to accelerate R&D.

Small and micro businesses could apply for up to £50,000 for highly innovative ideas, which focused on either achieving net zero or self-driven healthcare, that have a clear route to commercialisation.

Each company received one day of bid writing support from the Scale-Up Programme to help them secure these all-important funds.

The following members have been successful:

Neurotact collaborating with the University of Bath
25% of the adult population has chronic pain, with 8% suffering severe pain. Pain is a public health problem, but the expertise is held by a small number of pain professionals locked in pain clinics within the NHS. Accurate and personal assessment is the gateway to revolutionary changes underway in the self-management of painful long-term conditions.

Neurotact is developing a highly novel pain assessment tool that uses haptic feedback. It consists of a tactile hand-held device that uses multidimensional sensor data and measures pain through time allowing users to visualise their pain as a pain signature. Neurotact’s AI-powered data analytics and pain visualisation platform provide a comprehensive pain score, treatment outcomes and pain behaviour change predictions. This Innovate FAST grant will allow Neurotact to gather important data on feasibility and useability with adults experiencing chronic primary pain disorders. Based on the data collected, Neurotact will develop an algorithm to enable the calculation of individual signatures of pain and to enable to display them graphically.

Corus collaborating with the University of Bristol
Poor mental health is now the primary reason for workplace absence, with 70m lost work days and a cost to UK businesses of at least £45bn, according to Deloitte. Providing wellbeing support is no longer optional, and companies are spending billions of pounds a year on wellbeing. But only 15% of organisations attempt to calculate the financial return on their wellbeing spend due to the lack of understanding of how to measure and analyse the outcomes of these programmes effectively.

Corus is developing a software-as-a-service solution that sets the standard for demonstrating the cultural, health outcomes and the financial return on investment of any given wellbeing programme. The Innovate FAST grant will allow Corus, with the University of Bristol, to develop the evidence base for correlating the wellbeing programmes with mental health and the return on investment for businesses.

Chassis Autonomy collaborating with the University of Surrey
Autonomous vehicles are coming; it is simply a question of when. The current major barrier to their unrestricted operation is the lack of safety-critical steering and braking actuation systems that are designed specifically for use in autonomously driven vehicles.

Chassis Autonomy is developing steering and braking systems specifically for autonomous vehicles. Its steer-by-wire system is a ground-up fail-operational design that, in its first-generation guise, has already achieved proof of concept. Its second-generation system completed build and assembly in September 2022, and the company will use this Fast Start Grant to maintain development momentum and demonstrate the unique technical capabilities of its technology to the market on a functional test rig.

E-Fuels collaborating with the University of Surrey
Efuels Technologies Ltd is developing a novel power-to-methane technology to store renewable electricity within the existing natural gas infrastructure. Incumbent technologies are integrated multi-step processes. They are expensive and have poor conversion efficiencies and energy losses. Efuels’ solution leverages the scientific principles of microbial electrosynthesis to produce synthetic methane in one single step, and therefore at a fraction of the costs of incumbent solutions. The Fast Start Grant will allow the company to build evidence of market validation and a bench-scale prototype for the technology.

AP Wellness collaborating with the University of Southampton
AP Wellness will use its funding award to finish developing its fatigue-tracking app. The app helps people with brain injury, or long-term conditions track their fatigue across the day to better understand the factors that trigger or alleviate their fatigue. By balancing fatigue with everyday activities, the application enhances mental wellbeing and helps people re-engage with physical and social activities.

Sabe Technology collaborating with the University of Southampton
This project will develop a process combining Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques with data generated from advanced computing to enhance the onboard real-time aerodynamic performance measurements of electric aircraft propellers. The application will be focused on the aerospace sector, particularly within the scope of electrification applied to Urban Air Mobility and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. The adoption of electrification for air travel is much more challenging than for ground transportation due to the amplified negative effect of the battery weight on performance. Improvements in the operational efficiency of the crafts are a key requirement for the achievement of net-zero air transportation. The proposed technology is aligned with this theme; it will generate real-time pressure-based measurements such as thrust, drag, and torque, which will enable operational efficiency optimisation during flight.

Find out more about the support available through the Scale-Up Programme

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