Industrial strategy fund worth over £700m opens to UK businesses
23 Jun 2017
A government-led industrial strategy fund worth a combined value of more than £700 million has opened to businesses and researchers in the UK.
The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF), which itself is worth £699m, was unveiled in the spring budget. It includes six investment areas:
A £246m 'Faraday Challenge' fund to develop and manufacture batteries for the electrification of vehicles, which is available over four years.
£93m fund available over four years to develop robotics and AI systems that can be deployed in extreme environments.
£197m fund available over four years to develop first-of-a-kind technologies for the manufacture of medicines.
£38m to develop the next generation of AI and control systems to keep UK at the forefront of the driverless cars revolution.
£26m fund for the R&D of the next generation of affordable light-weight composite materials for aerospace, automotive and other advanced manufacturing sectors.
A satellite test facility - £99 million to support new launch technologies and the manufacturing and testing capabilities for the UK to construct future satellites and deliver payloads into orbit.
Innovate UK and the Research Councils have been tasked with delivering this funding.
Philip Nelson, chairman of the Research Councils and EPSRC chief executive, said: “The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund will target areas that are crucial to the economic and societal future of the UK. It will help research and innovation to thrive and open up new possibilities for the country.”
The EPSRC will also lead on a £42 million call for use-inspired research Hubs, to drive and accelerate translation of fundamental science in robotics and AI systems, the research body said.
Elsewhere, Innovate UK will lead on two additional funding competitions, which have now opened. These are: a £10m co-investment from industry to support collaborative research and development of technologies and systems for extreme and challenging environments.
A demonstrator programme, worth up to £6m, has also opened to allow companies to test these systems in facilities across the UK.
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