Young engineers with potentially ground-breaking ideas have been awarded industrial fellowships to help them develop their designs.
The nine recent graduates selected by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 will receive £80,000 worth of funding over three years to develop innovative technology with commercial potential.
Winning proposals include a robot to provide rapid and easy insulation for quicker building projects; drug-dispensing beads capable of blocking blood flow to cancerous tumours; and a new design for lighter, more efficient aircraft engines.
The winners work will be carried out in collaboration with an academic institution and a business partner while completing a PhD or engineering doctorate with the project ideally leading to a patent at the end.
Bernard Taylor, Chairman of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851, said:
“The Royal Commission has a rich history of championing innovation across science, industry and the arts. Our work today continues the legacy of Prince Albert and the Great Exhibition, investing in young talent across the depth and breadth of modern British industry.
“We are proud to support developments at the forefront of science and engineering, as demonstrated by this year’s extraordinarily diverse selection of Fellows. The skills and ability on display reflect the wealth of talent the UK can boast across all areas of innovation.”
The commission was set up by Prince Albert to organise the world’s first international trade fair, the Great Exhibition, and distribute its profits. The organisation now awards a range of fellowships and grants to support science and engineering research and industrial education across the UK, and has previously funded Nobel laureates Professor Peter Higgs, Sir James Chadwick and Paul Dirac.
The 2014 Fellows recognised at an award ceremony last night attended by Minister of State for Universities, Science and Cities Greg Clark were:
Ben Chamberlain – working with Starcount and Imperial College London to revolutionise the way marketing is carried out on digital social networks using machine learning techniques.
Shuning Bian – working with Lein Applied Diagnostics and the University of Oxford to accelerate the development of ultrasound and microbubble-enhanced drug delivery.
Silvia Araguas-Rodriguez – working with Sensor Coating Systems and Imperial College London to develop smart thermal memory paints enabling accurate temperature readings for use in high-performance aircraft and power generation turbines.
Mathew Holloway – working with Q-Bot and Imperial College London to develop innovative robotic technology capable of insulating the floors and walls of buildings at substantially reduced cost.
Stephen McColm – working with Ingenza and the University of Edinburgh to speed up the manufacture of fuels, chemicals and new pharmaceuticals by improving and accelerating the way microbial strains are engineered.
Alice Hagan – working with Biocompatibles UK and the University of Brighton to develop beads capable of blocking blood flow to cancerous tumours while simultaneously releasing drugs directly into the targeted area.
Tom Barber – working with BAE Systems Submarines and the University of Bristol to make the pre-service inspection of pipe welds safer, cheaper and more precise.
Misty Haith – working with BP Exploration and Imperial College London to improve the quality and reliability of the inspection of sub-sea pipeline inspections
Radu-Stefan Dragan – working with Magnomatics and the University of Sheffield on an actuator design which could make aeroplane engines lighter, more efficient, and more resistant to faults. Radu has been selected as this year’s ERA Foundation Fellow, an award for a candidate from the electro-technology sector made possible by a generous donation from the ERA Foundation.
Visit the commission’s website to apply for the 2015 Industrial Fellowships.