TSB/EPSRC: enhancing manufacturing through automation

TSB_Logo_Grey_new1The Technology Strategy Board, TSB, in collaboration with the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, EPSRC, invites applications for its enhancing manufacturing through automation competition.

The Technology Strategy Board is to invest up to £7m in collaborative R&D to develop, enhance or improve automation systems and equipment, including the use of robotics – driving significant improvements in complex manufacturing processes, including those of food. Additional funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) of up to £1m may be available for projects that contain a significant, high-quality academic research component and demonstrate added value by building on or being complementary to existing research programmes and portfolios.

Of the total £8m available, £2m will be specifically allocated to automation in the food sector.

Proposals must be collaborative and business-led and include a potential end-user. We expect to fund mainly industrial research projects in which a business partner will generally attract up to 50% public funding for their project costs (60% for SMEs). Projects should last from one to three years, with total project costs in the range of £500k to £2m, although we will consider projects outside this range.

This competition is a two-stage process, which opens on 21 January 2013. Expressions of interest (EOI) must be submitted by noon on 6 March 2013.

A briefing day for potential applicants will be held in London on 24 January 2013.