The world needs - and is demanding - new affordable, lightweight, robust and durable composite materials. This demand is being driven by the transportation and other high-value industries that want to improve performance, functionality and efficiency.
For example, the demand for airliners continues to grow but there is a need to control their emissions. The switch to electric and zero emissions vehicles will continue to gather pace. The number of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is growing.
UK strengths in materials science
These trends play to the UK's long-standing strength in materials science. The UK is a world leader in advanced materials and the government has identified it as one of eight key sectors that are vital to the UK’s future economic growth.
Much of the UK's world-class capability in transport sectors - such as automotive, motorsport and aerospace - is due to its success in the development of advanced materials.
South Korea invests in materials science
South Korea, the world’s 11th largest economy, is also investing heavily to stimulate international business collaboration in this field. In this exciting area, there are many real opportunities for collaboration.
This October, 14 UK advanced materials companies will travel to South Korea on the next Global Business Innovation Programme (GBIP). The GBIP helps organisations to commercialise their technology by facilitating introductions to international partners interested in R&D and technology transfer collaboration opportunities or investment.
The companies will be supported through a structured and tailored programme of support before and after the visit. During the five day in-country programme they will meet South Korean officials and companies in Ulsan and Busan and attend ADEX Seoul 2019 with the aim of creating opportunities for technology collaboration.
It is an exceptional opportunity to learn about market demand and potential applications for their technologies in South Korea and neighbouring Asian markets, as well as exploring opportunities for research collaboration and meeting potential clients and partners.
GBIP South Korea is led by Louise Hooker and Jayne Codling of Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) in its role within Innovate UK’s business growth services.
The companies participating in this GBIP come from across the country - from Cornwall to Cambridgeshire and from Abingdon to Warrington. They are:
A2O Innovation Solutions
Warrington-based company whose customer focused, scalable manufacturing process and pro-active material integrity monitoring enable manufacturers to overcome costs barriers and adopt advanced composite materials.
Basingstoke-based business which designs, develops and produces high-quality, aluminium-based metal matrix composite (AMC) components.
A Bristol company that has pioneered a patent pending process to produce and incorporate graphene into composite materials, quickly, cheaply and at scale.
Weston-based Aspire has developed strategies to support the 3 Rs (recycle, reuse and remanufacture) for products such as hydrogen fuel cell stacks, rail rolling stock, and electric vehicle batteries As an Innovate UK Faraday Battery Challenge beneficiary, it is exploring an opportunity to set up a pilot facility for processing EV batteries and other related EV powertrain products such as e-motors and invertors.
Huntingdon-based ECO-Composites specialises in the material and product development of natural composites solutions using natural fibres and naturally derived binding materials.
This AIM-listed, Bicester-based company has developed a family of nanostructured tungsten carbide coatings which are used by international oil service companies, pump and valve makers and aircraft manufacturers.
Dorchester-based company that specialises in robots for the high rate deposition of ply-based materials in the composites industry.
An Abingdon-based company specialising in precision fabrication and welding for highly-regulated industries. It is the leading manufacturer of cryogenic pressure vessels used in Siemens MRI scanners.
An Oxford company which has developed innovative coating technologies to improve heat transfer in components for industrial, transport and electronics platforms.
Oxford-based manufacturer of laser vision sensors and control systems for industrial applications.
Launceston-based company that specialises in the manufacturing and development of electrochemical materials.
A Newton Abbot-based company that specialises in design for manufacture of composite components utilising compression and bladder moulding techniques, The company has been supplying the aerospace, defence and nuclear industries for over 25 years.
Based in Cambridge, this is the product development arm of Talga Resources, a technology minerals company developing advanced materials for the energy storage, coatings and composites sectors. Talga owns Europe’s largest natural graphite resources and innovative technologies for the industrial scale production of battery anode materials and graphene.
Cranfield-based company that is developing cutting-edge electric motors, cooling technologies and sensor systems.