AZoM had the chance to talk with Dr. Peter Clark from InnovateUK KTN in regards to the work that they do to attach and encourage the business, in addition to their presence on the ChemUK commerce present in Birmingham this Could.
Might you please introduce your self and your skilled background in chemistry and biotechnology?
I’m the Head of Chemistry & Industrial Biotechnology at Innovate UK Information Switch Community. I’m additionally an Advisor on the Board of inexperienced chemistry start-up Inexperienced Lizard Applied sciences and the Decreasing Industrial Carbon Emissions (RICE) venture. Previous to becoming a member of Innovate UK KTN, I spent greater than eight years in Australia, gaining a broad vary of expertise by working throughout analysis & innovation, business consulting, coverage improvement, and managing sustainability packages for the chemical compounds sector. My enthusiasm for chemistry and innovation was developed throughout my time as a Masters Pupil after which Ph.D. Pupil working within the Clear Expertise Group on the College of Nottingham.
How does Innovate UK KTN encourage course of/expertise innovation in numerous industrial sectors?
We speed up innovation by connecting innovators to companions and funding. We do that by the design and supply of packages which regularly run alongside the funding competitions run by our companions at Innovate UK.
In my workforce, we’ve got eight technical & sector specialists who’re working with the chemistry & industrial biotech innovator neighborhood (established business, disruptive innovators, analysis, and scale-up neighborhood) to attach them to the funding alternatives that exist immediately. In parallel, we’re working with our innovator neighborhood and our companions at Innovate UK and different Authorities our bodies to tell the course of future public funding in innovation.
What’s actually thrilling and distinctive about Innovate UK KTN is that we’ve got specialists with data, experience, and networks spanning all rising applied sciences and sectors. This degree of deep cross-sector data implies that we’ve got an especially highly effective community at our fingertips.
In November 2021, Innovate UK launched the Motion Plan for Enterprise Innovation 2021 to 2025. We’re working collectively extra carefully than ever with our companions at Innovate UK to ship this bold plan.
Innovate UK KTN is launching a two-day ‘Useful resource Effectivity’ program at this 12 months’s ChemUK commerce present in Could. What does this program contain?
Broad adoption of useful resource effectivity is vital for financial progress, defending the environment, and making certain the resilience of provide. Nonetheless, the implementation of resource-efficient options is a fancy and large job. As a part of Innovate UK’s deal with Web Zero, they’re investing £15 million within the Useful resource Effectivity for Supplies and Manufacturing (REforMM) Programme. This program is designed to place in place the important thing constructing blocks to assist companies remodel to a resource-efficient future. On prime of this, there’s a £14 million funding from Innovate UK, BBSRC, and EPSRC in Sustainable Bio-based Supplies and Manufacturing and likewise £15 million from Innovate UK for Round Essential Supplies Provide Chains. You will discover out extra about these packages in our periods at CHEMUK or by clicking on the hyperlinks. These packages all assist the not too long ago launched Supplies and Manufacturing Imaginative and prescient for 2050.
How necessary is it to see a transition to a round economic system within the chemical business?
The chemical sector is the vital enabler of the round economic system. It’s technological innovation in chemistry and industrial biotechnology that may assist scale back our dependence on virgin fossil carbon as an vitality supply and feedstock for the manufacturing of fuels and chemical compounds. The Flue-to-Chem venture, which we’re showcasing at CHEMUK, is an efficient instance of this.
Picture Credit score: InnovateUK KTN
Additionally it is this sector that may allow us to create safer native provide chains for vital uncooked supplies (CRMs), both by the event of superior supplies that scale back our reliance on CRMs or by the creation of extra environment friendly and scalable chemical recycling processes for CRMs that enable us to maintain these supplies within the round economic system. We’ll speak extra about this in our periods!
Innovate UK KTN works throughout a number of sustainable manufacturing sectors, together with in collaboration with the UK round plastics community. Might you describe among the work and alternatives which can be created by Innovate UK KTN towards extra sustainable practices within the chemical business?
We performed a key position in convening the Flue-to-Chem venture. For my part, this is without doubt one of the most disruptive and collaborative initiatives that I’ve seen in my 7+ years at IUK KTN, so we’re happy to have performed a job in serving to to make it occur. In parallel, we’ve got engaged with the entire carbon seize and utilization provide chain to develop an Innovation motion plan to remodel industrial waste gases into chemical compounds which we’ll use to tell coverage and speed up innovation on this space.
We additionally not too long ago launched a report wanting on the alternatives for biomass as a chemical feedstock which we’ve got been utilizing to tell authorities coverage on this space. We imagine there are lots of alternatives for the chemical sector to speed up innovation by the adoption of digital applied sciences so we’ve got been working with specialists from our community to develop a Playbook that our neighborhood can use to evaluate their state of improvement.
How necessary is data switch to those efforts?
Innovation is a protracted, arduous journey stuffed with pitfalls and is extraordinarily tough to do alone. Information switch is vital to rushing up the innovation course of. We’re fortunate to have such a well-developed innovation ecosystem to assist innovators hook up with funding, hook up with scale up companions (e.g., by our Catapult community), and different assist organizations (e.g., Innovate UK EDGE). If you’re studying this and wish assist navigating it, come and speak to us at our Exhibition stand.
Why do you imagine it’s important for Innovate UK KTN to have interaction with in-person commerce reveals corresponding to ChemUK?
Our major position is to attach. CHEMUK offers a singular discussion board to have interaction with the chemical compounds sector and its provide chain. Our goal is to boost consciousness inside the sector of the funding and assist that’s out there to firms to speed up innovation and, in the end, to assist develop the sector and the UK economic system.
What’s subsequent for Innovate UK KTN?
I’ve solely coated only a few of the funding packages which can be out there, however hopefully you’ll be able to see from this text that we’re going to be fairly busy over the following 12 months working with our companions at Innovate UK to assist speed up clear progress within the UK! We sit up for working with the chemical sector to create some incredible case research and serving to the sector to develop!
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About Dr. Peter Clark
Peter is Head of Chemistry & Industrial Biotechnology at Innovate UK KTN the place one in all his key roles is to establish, develop and ship innovation packages & actions the place chemistry and industrial biotechnology can play a key enabling position to speed up innovation for the good thing about UK plc.
Peter has an in depth understanding of the innovation ecosystem, in addition to a strong community of connections. He has an in depth understanding of key challenges and alternatives for innovators in chemistry & industrial biotechnology and works carefully with Innovate UK, and different stakeholders from Authorities and the personal sector, to develop new packages & initiatives that may speed up innovation to fulfill key world challenges, like Web Zero.
Peter’s key pursuits (and focus for his workforce) embrace supporting the transfer to a Web Zero and Round Economic system, growing new provide chains for Uncooked Supplies and Feedstocks, additionally the adoption of digitalization strategies. Peter and the workforce are actively supporting a lot of cross-sector KTN packages associated to: industrial decarbonization, batteries, vital uncooked supplies, round plastics, hydrogen and sustainable aviation fuels.
Peter holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Clear Expertise Group at College of Nottingham. Previous to becoming a member of KTN, Peter spent greater than eight years in Australia gaining a broad vary of expertise by working throughout analysis & innovation, business consulting, coverage improvement and managing sustainability packages for the chemical compounds sector.
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