KTN's online platform helps you to make the connections you need


The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has refreshed its online platform to intelligently connect you to relevant events, funding, thought pieces and specialist staff to help your business innovate and grow.

You can discover content using your area of interest, from sustainability to transport; from space to health – all major UK economic sectors are covered. Once you have selected your interests, using our intelligent tagging system, we will then display rich and relevant content related to your area, often from surprising sources.

An example might be new satellite technology from the space sector that is applicable in the agri-food sector. KTN-UK.co.uk will help you form these unusual and valuable connections.

All content on the platform has been carefully curated by our team of innovation specialists – not by an automated algorithm – so you can be confident that KTN is connecting you to the most relevant cutting-edge information.


The move also marks a closer alignment with our main funder, Innovate UK , with the website branding making a clear visual link. Knowledge Transfer Network is Innovate UK's innovation network partner, and also works with other funders to provide innovation networking services and fulfil our mission to drive UK growth.

We link new ideas and opportunities with expertise, markets and finance through our network of businesses, universities, funders and investors. From agri-food to autonomous systems and from energy to design, KTN combines expertise in all sectors with the ability to cross boundaries. Connecting with KTN can lead to potential partners, horizon-expanding events and innovation insights relevant to your needs.

Visit our people pages to connect directly with expertise in your sector.

Visit the KTN refreshed online platfom here


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Last few remaining spaces available on the Radical Train Competition consortia-building event

The Rail Industry's Enabling Innovation Team's Radical Train Competition is now open to applications and is calling on the whole of UK Industry to propose innovative ideas for improving trains as part of the Future Railways Programme. The best ideas will go forward into a demonstrator project and ultimately improve trains across the country.  Applications and proposals from organisations not currently directly associated with the rail industry are very welcome.

Those considering entering ideas are urged to do so soon - early entrants will benefit from feedback during an 8-week dialogue phase. 

A consortium building event will take place on 12 April at the National Space Centre in Leicester to allow applicants the opportunity to network and discuss ideas.  There are still a limited number of places available.  To register for the event, or with any enquiries, please email radicaltrain@fnc.co.uk.

The final deadline for applications is 2pm Friday 3rd May. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to present their proposal to the judging panel on 13th/14th May in Bristol.  Visit the EIT website for an application form and more information about the process.

Possible themes.....

Note that info below is taken directly from the competition document:

Proposers may wish to consider the following themes that were identified at a stakeholder workshop in November 2012. The themes capture some valuable issues for the industry. However, proposers should in no way should be limited or constrained by them as we envisage and want proposals to be received covering a much wider range of issues and scope.

The themes from the workshop are:

  • Smart control systems: The scope for smart control systems is large (encompassing steering, braking, speed control, etc.) Control systems and other automation technologies need to be selected carefully so that they yield tangible benefits (increased throughput, higher volumes, increased comfort, increased safety, etc.)
  • How best to reduce dependence on legacy requirements: Requirements based on existing rail vehicles can be an impediment to technological innovation. Identification of those requirements could increase considerably the technology choices available for both research engineers and designers of future rail systems designers.
  • Investigation of locomotive / rail vehicle lifespan as a requirement: Long life means that requirements are made for future contingencies that are never encountered (or only have a very small probability of being encountered.) This results in non-optimal solutions for current use-cases, often to the detriment of passengers.
  • Modular train interiors: Modularity is a concept that is common in automotive and aerospace systems. It has yielded great benefits to acquirers and manufacturers including increases in operational efficiency, reduced manufacture costs, and upgrades to more modern on-board equipment.
  • Braking systems (including regenerative braking for energy recovery, track braking for line-of-sight driver operation.)
  • Mass reduction: Rail Vehicles are designed to withstand and to protect passengers and crew during major collisions. If safety can be improved in ways that rely less on structural mass (perhaps using approaches similar to aircraft), then this could have multiple benefits (manufacture costs, increased compartment size, reduced energy usage, etc.)
  • Rail Systems and infrastructure communication technologies: This is an enabling technology that has benefits in a variety of areas such as signalling (e.g., reduced but more reliable infrastructure footprint), logistics (e.g., telemetry sent to depot, station, or siding so that event-driven maintenance / repair can be carried out.) 


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