PRESS RELEASE - There's still time to apply for round 2 of the NATEP funding programme - February 2014

For release 14th February 2014

There's still time to apply for round 2 of the NATEP funding programme

Aerospace businesses have until 20th March 2014 to apply for funding to develop new, advanced technologies through the National Aerospace Technology Programme (NATEP).

NATEP is a £40m technology development programme derived from a bid by the Aerospace Growth Partnership to the Government's Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative. The programme aims to mature 100 undeveloped aerospace technologies and create jobs in the supply chain.

NATEP is aimed at small and medium sized suppliers to help them develop their own innovative technologies to increase their ability to win new business with higher tier companies world-wide.

Funded with £23 million from the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) and approximately £17 million from partners, the NATEP programme delivery is managed by ADS and delivered through the network of UK regional trade associations, including North West Aerospace Alliance (NWAA) for the North West region.

During the structured process, companies will be supported by an industry expert to develop the bids and universities/research organisations will also offer assistance. The projects will normally take 1-2 years and there will be up to £150k direct funding to industry per project.

NWAA recently held two NATEP information events, where companies were given an overview of the process and Advanced Chemical Etching from Telford showcased how they had successfully bid for ATEP funding, which was a pilot programme for NATEP.

Using the funding they were able to work on a study of advanced materials for heat exchanger applications in collaboration with two large tier 1 aerospace suppliers to identify a safe and repeatable process for processing non corrosive and lightweight alloys. The company were also successful in a bid for a second project to develop innovative thermal heat exchangers with the same two suppliers and the University of Wolverhampton.

The aim of this project was to develop a new fin type heat exchanger. After much development the concept was proven to be a success and these findings led to a further test program being undertaken by one of the partners to prove to the end customer that the concept worked.

Manchester based Rotite Technologies Ltd attended one of the events and attracted much interest in their newly developed revolutionary connection and coupling technology which has a range of benefits for consumers, engineers and manufacturers alike. Rotite is based on a mathematical principle as fundamental as the screw. With limitless derivatives, and scalable to any size, Rotite is a diverse platform technology that can provide contemporary solutions to a range of precision engineering problems.

Rotite invested heavily into this new technology and needed a way to improve the technology readiness level and get the product to market. Following the NATEP event, Rotite hope to create technical research partnerships, both industrial and academic, conduct manufacturing research and acquire technical data to feed through to other markets which will use funding from the NATEP programme if they are successful with their bid.

Stuart Burns, Managing Director of Rotite and the principal investor and inventor of the new technology said: "Prior to the NATEP information event we were very daunted by the thought of preparing a bid for a funding and being a very small company, we had struggled to get introductions to potential partners and end users to assist us with the development of our revolutionary connection and coupling technology.

We met some fantastic people at the event and they recognised the potential of our technological development and were keen to get involved."

Bids from round one with a value of £1.2million have been submitted since the joint industry and Government funded programme was launched at the Paris Air Show by Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon in June 2013. The nine bids, which have been made in the first round of funding applications, have been put forward by a total of 23 companies up and down the country, demonstrating the appetite from industry for the programme. The successful round one bids will be announced shortly.

David Bailey, Director of Operations for NWAA said:

"The Northwest Aerospace Alliance welcomes the announcement of UK government

"We feel that NATEP addresses the key barriers to the development and exploitation of new products and processes in the aerospace supply chain. NATEP will support both SME and Mid-Cap companies with a structured technology development process, aerospace R&T management expertise and the all important customer engagement that will help ensure new technologies reach the market. We are looking forward to working with companies in the North West of England and their customers to make a significant contribution to the target of 100 new technologies for the UK aerospace supply chain"

ENDS

All media enquires please contact: Sharon McDonald or Amiee Giles at NWAA on 017722 648800 or email sharon.mcdonald@aerospace.co.uk or amiee.giles@aerospace.co.uk


NOTES TO EDITORS:

About the NWAA:

North West Aerospace Alliance TM - North West Aerospace Alliance, NWAA and ASCE are all registered trade marks.

The North West aerospace cluster is the largest in Europe and contributes over £7 billion pound to the UK economy, accounting for one third of the UK aerospace turnover.

The North West Aerospace Alliance (NWAA) is the key industry organisation in the region, representing and uniting companies and organisations involved in the aerospace sector supply chain.

For more see www.aerospace.co.uk/