The High Value Manufacturing Catapult and Made Smarter announce new Smart Factory Innovation Hub

18 Jan 2021

The High Value Manufacturing Catapult and Made Smarter, the UK’s manufacturing digitalisation movement, have announced a new HVM Catapult-led Made Smarter Smart Factory Innovation Hub pilot. The pilot offers participating companies the opportunity to reduce the risk of implementing new digital manufacturing solutions within their businesses.

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The Innovation Hub will allow businesses to test quick-fire projects and early-stage technologies at one of its 16 testbeds, a safe, industry-like environment with expert support. These testbeds will offer manufacturers and technology providers the following benefits: 

For manufacturers

  • An environment to innovate, develop and de-risk rapidly configurable projects and industrial digital technologies before investing within their own businesses 
  • An opportunity to experience new, integrated technology solutions on real-industry use cases and with expert HVM Catapult support 

For technology providers

  • An opportunity to test, develop and showcase new technology solutions on real industry example and source feedback to improve their technology offering for the sector 

Businesses selected for the pilot will see how they can use industrial digital technologies to address live business challenges like productivity, cost and traceability, and remote working. Using the HVM Catapult’s world-class equipment and facilities, the pilot is open to all manufacturing sectors from food and drink, to pharmaceuticals or aerospace.

The Made Smarter Smart Factory Innovation Hub pilot will come at no-cost for participating companies. The funding was awarded by UK Research and Innovation through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. 

Dick Elsy, CEO of the HVM Catapult, said: We’re pleased to work with UK businesses looking to harness innovative digital technologies to transform their performance and competitiveness. The Smart Factory Innovation Hub pilot presents an exciting opportunity to apply the HVM Catapult’s deep industry knowledge and expertise to projects which require increased speed and agility. During this pilot, we are uniquely positioned to service quick-fire feasibility projects for manufacturers and give manufacturing technology providers a chance to develop, demonstrate and test new applications. Working together with Made Smarter and businesses of all sizes, we look forward to stimulating growth through better use of digital technologies in manufacturing.” 

Juergen Maier, Co-Chair Made Smarter said: As businesses fight their way through this challenging pandemic, speeding up the uptake and development of new ground-breaking digital technologies has never been more important. The Made Smarter Smart Factory Innovation Hub pilot delivered by the HVM Catapult will give smaller companies access to world class expert support to turbo-charge new digital innovation and projects. This will deliver that much needed boost to both individual businesses and the economy as a whole, as companies push forward to create the new must have” technologies of the future in order to compete in the global marketplace.”

Chris Courtney, Manufacturing Made Smarter Challenge Director, said; Digital technologies have the power to radically transform how we manufacture and deliver the products and services of today and the future. This is more vital than ever given the current challenges of the pandemic and climate change and there are enormous opportunities to innovate across all manufacturing sectors. We have world leading industries, a powerful scientific and research community, a vibrant technology sector and these innovation hubs are being designed to bring that powerful coalition together.”

For more information and to register interest, please visit: www​.hvm​.cat​a​pult​.org​.uk/​i​n​n​o​v​a​t​i​o​n-hub

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