Deadline approaching for £300m ‘future flight’ possibilities for STC region’s businesses

Silverstone Technology Cluster

17th December 2019

Businesses within the Silverstone Technology Cluster region are being urged to act quickly if they are to potentially take advantage of a £125m fund and play a role in the UK Government’s ‘Future Flight Challenge’ to help revolutionise aviation.

STC member Axillium, which specialises in identifying and managing R&D collaborations, will host a workshop at Cranfield University in February to explain the criteria for applying for a share in the R&D grant funding.

Final proposals must then be submitted in April/May 2020.

Axillium Founder Will Searle commented: “This is a fantastic opportunity for businesses within the Silverstone Technology Cluster but they need to be getting involved now or they will miss the deadline.

“They are in something of a race against time to be part of something that could shape aviation globally for many years to come.

“The size of the business does not matter – from scale-ups to SMEs/micro enterprises to larger organisations; if they have an idea that is going to help the UK chain in the future of flight then this really is for them.

“Up to 70% of their costs will be recoverable if their applications to Government are successful.”

The Future Flight Challenge is being delivered by UK Research & Innovation. Government will provide £125m through its Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund and this will be added to by another £175m from industry (making for £300m in total).

Axillium led a workshop on a project for the Future Flight Challenge’s first round of funding which deadlined in September and has flagged the second opportunity for the region to get involved.

Now Will is urging fellow STC based businesses to act swiftly so as not to miss out on the second deadline.

Will added: “Our workshop will be in a completely ‘open access’ environment – it’s about informing the STC’s businesses of what is being looked for.

“Consider that in 2017 six engineers left Rolls Royce and set up ‘Vertical’ in Bristol – that is now a leading name in the future of flight.”

And he continued: “Future flight could cover a number of areas – of course that includes drones and passenger planes, but, significantly, also everything else that makes aviation possible from ground components and security to buildings and infrastructure.

“Certainly businesses in the autonomous, connected, electrified and shared community (the STC already has an ‘ACES’ special interest group) and who do have an interest in investing in their business, people and technology could be ideally placed.”

Businesses in the STC region wishing to register for Axillium’s ‘Future Flight Challenge workshop should contact Will.Searle@Axillium.com

CLICK HERE for more information on the Future Flight Challenge.

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