Blogs

£3m SBRI Competition to Fund Development of New Sensing Technologies for Asset Protection

The Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) are to invest up to £3m in the development of innovative sensing for asset protection.  This competition will be funded through the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI).  Under SBRI, developments are 100% funded and focus on specific identified needs such as using intelligent modular sensing systems in surveillance and asset protection applications.

An online webinar at 12am on the 5th of June 2013 will provide information about technical requirements and the application process. To register please go to: http://tinyurl.com/02vzf33

How do you solve a problem like asset protection? (updated)

An online webinar to cover the technical requirements and the application process for the SAPIENT SBRI Competition is planned on the 5th of June at 12am. Registration is now opened at http://tinyurl.com/o2vzf33

 

The problem is indeed an ancient one. To protect their valuables people used fences, locks, Alsatian dogs but ultimately they always had to rely on human cognitive abilities to detect and evaluate a threat. While a barbed wire fence is an effective deterrent from intruders it is now often combined with the electronic surveillance equipment such as video cameras or acoustic sensors. Still it is a task for an operator of the electronic surveillance system to determine the level of the threat and to make a decision regarding how to address it. To find novel ways to protect valuable assets the Technology Strategy Board and Dstl launched a new SBRI competition called SAPIENT: http://tinyurl.com/d4h4rcz

 

In the context of both Ministry of Defence (MOD) and civil environments there is a need to protect high value land-based assets, such as military Forward Operating Bases (FOBs), civil dockyards and power stations, from various threats, typically human incursions into the area.  A key enabler to protection is detection but this imposes a high operator burden.  Increasing the autonomy of sensor systems is expected to reduce operator fatigue with a resulting increase in performance for detection and recognition of threats.  Ensuring systems are modular, conforming to an open architecture, will reduce the ongoing costs and increase the versatility of the surveillance systems used.  

 

Current systems lack versatility such that the failure of any one subsystem introduces significant vulnerabilities, with limited scope for sensor redeployment.  Typically, systems require a bespoke network to connect the sensors to the operator, but by introducing a modular open architecture it is expected that the system as a whole will be more resilient to individual failures. In addition, it is anticipated that there are sensor or sensor fusion technologies new to this type of deployment that may offer significant improvements to overall systems performance.

It is expected that many of these problems can be solved through innovation in the form of networked autonomous sensor modules.   Each module should be able to make decisions about what information to send, when and where to scan, simultaneously incorporating information from a central decision making node.

 

SAPIENT Briefing Event

 

The SAPIENT Briefing Event attracted 50 delegates representing TSB, Dstl, UK companies and universities and offered them an excellent networking oppoortunity. Talks from the event are now available on _connect website: 

/web/11750784/document-library 

Intelligent Sensing Modules for Surveillance Applications (updated)

In the context of both defence and civil environments there is a need to protect high value land-based assets, such as military Forward Operating Bases (FOBs), civil dockyards and power stations, from various threats, typically human incursions into the area.  A key enabler to protection is detection but this imposes a high operator burden.  Increasing the autonomy of sensor systems is expected to reduce operator fatigue with a resulting increase in performance for detection and recognition of threats.  Ensuring systems are modular, conforming to an open architecture, will reduce the ongoing costs and increase the versatility of the surveillance systems used. 
Current systems lack versatility such that the failure of any one subsystem introduces significant vulnerabilities, with limited scope for sensor redeployment.  Typically, systems require a bespoke network to connect the sensors to the operator, but by introducing a modular open architecture it is expected that the system as a whole will be more resilient to individual failures. In addition, it is anticipated that there are sensor or sensor fusion technologies new to this type of deployment that may offer significant improvements to overall systems performance.
It is expected that many of these problems can be solved through innovation in the form of networked autonomous sensor modules.   Each module should be able to make decisions about what information to send, when and where to scan, simultaneously incorporating information from a central decision making node.
The specification of the demonstrator for this competition should meet military requirements. Nevertheless, in recognition of the wider market opportunities for participating companies, the relevance of these specifications to civil security applications has been considered. Consultation with security experts has confirmed that there are significant similarities in requirements.  Therefore, demonstration of the final system will be promoted to both the military and civil security communities.

Official SAPIENT Competition web page:  

http://tinyurl.com/bowqty4


SAPIENT Competition Online Webinar
5th of June 2013 at 12am
To register please go to:
http://tinyurl.com/o2vzf33
 

SAPIENT SBRI Competition is Open

 

SAPIENT: Sensing for Asset Protection using Integrated Electronic Networked Technology

 

The Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) are to invest up to £3m in the development of innovative sensing for asset protection.  This competition will be funded through the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI).  Under SBRI, developments are 100% funded and focus on specific identified needs, increasing the chance of exploitation.

In the context of both Ministry of Defence (MOD) and civil environments there is a need to protect high value land-based assets, such as military Forward Operating Bases (FOBs), civil dockyards and power stations, from threats, typically human incursions into the area.

It is expected that many of existing problems can be solved by introducing sensor or sensor fusion technologies new to this type of deployment that may offer significant improvements to overall systems performance and innovation in the form of increasing the autonomy of sensor systems, a modular open architecture incorporating networked autonomous sensor modules.   Each module should be able to make decisions about what information to send, when and where to scan, simultaneously incorporating information from a central decision making node.

The requirements share the following objectives:

·       Protection of land based high-value assets with defined borders

·       Reduction in operator workload during monitoring activities

·       Improved autonomy for decision making (automatic identification of threat activities to reduce false alarm rates, allowing for autonomous context driven decision making)

·       Improved autonomy for sensor management

It is expected that these objectives can be met by innovation into low cost autonomous sensing modules and using open systems architecture to enable contribution of sub-components from a wide industrial base. 

 

Official competition web page:

http://tinyurl.com/bowqty4

 

SAPIENT Competition Briefing Event

14th of May 2013

Ambassadors Bloomsbury

12 Upper Woburn Place

London, WC1H 0HX

To register please go to:

/web/11750784

The Institute Laue-Langevin: Opportunities for UK Companies

ILL Aerial Photo

 

The Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL) is an international research centre at the leading edge of neutron science and technology. As the world’s flagship centre for neutron science, the ILL provides scientists with a very high flux of neutrons feeding some 40 state-of-the-art instruments, which are constantly being developed and upgraded. ILL is funded and managed by France, Germany and the United Kingdom, in partnership with 11 other countries (10 European and India.)

The UK is represented at ILL by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC). As any other large research facility, ILL requires a broad range of products and services to build new experiments and maintain the existing ones. STFC provides information about open tenders to the UK companies and provides support to those who want to become suppliers to ILL and other international research facilities (CERN, ESRF and ESO).

To find more about this business opportunity and support available from STFC please attend our online webinar Doing Business with Big Science on the 23rd of April 2013 at 12am. To register for the webinar please follow the link:
http://tinyurl.com/d9zlbye

Doing Business with Big Science: ESRF

ESRF Aerial Photo

 

The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) is an international research institute for cutting-edge science with photons based in Grenoble, France. It is one of the world's largest synchrotron science centres. Every year, more than  6000 scientists from 12 member countries including the UK and from around the world travel to Grenoble to use its extremely brilliant X-rays for leading-edge research. The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is managing the UK membership at ESRF.

The ESRF is a French Société civile and subject to French law hence companies from the UK interested in procuring their products and services to ESRF might find the tender process rather challenging. STFC offers support to British businesses who would like to become suppliers to large research facilities. To find more about this business opportunity and support available from STFC please attend our online webinar Doing Business with Big Science on the 23rd of April 2013 at 12am. To register for the webinar please follow the link:
http://tinyurl.com/d9zlbye
 

Doing Business with Big Science: CERN

CERN Aerial Picture

 

 

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. The instruments used at CERN are purpose-built particle accelerators and detectors. Founded in 1954, the CERN laboratory sits astride the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva. It was one of Europe's first joint ventures and now has 20 member states. The UK is represented at CERN by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)

To achieve its ambitious scientific objectives CERN needs to procure a broad spectrum of products and services ranging from computer hardware to engineering and and construction. It creates an exciting opportunity for UK-based businesses.

STFC provides support to British companies interested in bidding for procurement contracts from CERN. To learn more about business opportunities from CERN and support available from STFC please attend our webinar 'Doing Business with Big Science' http://tinyurl.com/d9zlbye .

New Apple's iWatch and Energy Harvesting

Many people were asking a question: what will be the next big innovation from Apple? The answer might have been revealed in a patent application published today http://tinyurl.com/apj4vv3 . BI-STABLE SPRING WITH FLEXIBLE DISPLAY is a patent title behind which the new iWatch is hiding. 

Though the patent application doesn't reveal how an actual product will look like, it still provides some interesting information including how the iWatch will be powered. According to the patent filing the battery will be assisted by the kinetic energy gathering component and by ambient light energy collectors. 

It provides an excellent example of how important Energy Harvesting becomes for the future of Internet of Things. 

Energy Storage is Key to Renewable Energy Adoption

One of the challenges related to renewable energy adoption is a problem of energy storage. Unfortunately, the cycle of production for renewable energy sources such as solar and wind depends on factors that we can't control or predict with a required level of precision. Therefore production and consumtion phases are very difficult to synchronise. Finding suitable solutions for storing excess energy would make renewable sources of energy more attractive to industry and consumers. The trick is how to minimize energy losses. Various energy storage technologies cover a very broad range from molten salts to liquid air but so far there is no clear leader. One opportunity that is being pursued by a British company Cella Energy Ltd is using hydrogen. The Cella technology is based around the encapsulation and nanostructuring of chemical hydrides in a polymer. This results in a material that can be handled in air and allows hydrogen to be released quickly and cleanly upon heating. You can learn more about it from the ESP KTN's use case.

Having discussed it with the company I understand that this soultion could be suitable for a broad spectrum of applications from powering cars to miniature solutions such as laptops and sensors. The hydrogen doesn't have to be produced from the renewable energy sources but it is a possibility. 

You can meet Cella Energy, other companies and researchers working in the area of renewable energy and energy storage at the Renewable Energy Technology Showcase Event on the 27th of February 2013 at the Ambassadors Bloomsbury Hotel, Woburn Place, London. The event is free to attend. If you are interested, please follow the link to register: http://tinyurl.com/b3uclwu .

  

Showing 9 results.
Items per Page 20
of 1