The Materials Team at Innovate UK KTN covers a broad scope of the materials life cycle, from feedstock, processing techniques, design and manufacture, testing, standardisation, resource efficiency and circularity.
Our current focus in this area
The UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN) aims to bring together the diverse users of plastic products and realise the best means for reducing plastic waste entering the environment through a programme of networking and knowledge-sharing events and related support activities.
The Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging activity at Innovate UK KTN is proactively driving engagement and collaboration as part of the core programme of the UKRI ISCF Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge (SSPP).
Situated in our industrial heartlands, these sectors include metals, ceramics, glass, chemicals, paper and cement, producing 28m tonnes of material per year, and are worth £52bn annually to the UK economy.
Composite materials consist of two different materials different physical and chemical properties. When they are combined, they create a composite material which has superior properties to the original two materials.
Textiles are everywhere in modern society. Technical Textiles are defined as materials and products manufactured primarily for their technical and performance properties rather than their aesthetic or decorative characteristics.
Graphene and other novel two-dimensional (2D) materials have sustained strong interest from academia and industry owing to their unique combination of material properties. These properties, which include strength, thermal and electrical conductivity, are found to be superior to those exhibited by other advanced materials.
Metamaterials are artificial composite materials, engineered to exhibit unique electromagnetic properties. Metamaterial devices are poised to grow to $10.7 billion globally by 2030 in 5G networks, autonomous vehicles, connected vehicles, and more.
Smart Functional Materials are defined as those materials that change significantly one or more of their physical or chemical native properties when subjected to changes in their environment, thus rendering them stimuli-responsive.
Ceramics and glass materials exhibit high strength, high elastic modulus and are electrical and thermal insulators. Advanced ceramics and glasses are engineered to optimise its mechanical, electrical, magnetic and optical properties.
SSPP: Liquid food and beverages in refillable packaging
Opens: 18/09/2023 Closes: 25/10/2023
Up to £1.5m available to demonstrate a reuse or refill packaging system for liquid food and beverage products, at scale, in a retail chain.
Global Business Innovation Programme in Canada - Critical Minerals
Opens: 04/09/2023 Closes: 08/10/2023
Innovate UK EDGE are looking for up to 15 businesses with circular solutions for critical minerals and their supply chains to join the GBIP in Canada.
Rapidly find innovative solutions to tangible materials and manufacturing challenges
Opens: 24/08/2023 Closes: 30/09/2023
Innovate UK is now inviting expressions of interest from those looking to rapidly find innovative solutions to tangible materials and manufacturing challenges.
Game Changers challenge: Identifying deformities in 500L drums
Opens: 11/08/2023 Closes: 28/09/2023
FIS360’s Game Changers nuclear industry innovation programme seeks a method of inspecting radioactive waste drums.
Innovation Exchange challenge: Subsea Mattress Sustainable Ties
Opens: 21/08/2023 Closes: 29/09/2023
This challenge seeks sustainable, durable, high-load ties for seabed subsea concrete ‘mattresses’ which are used to protect undersea cables.
European Commission Plastics Related Funding & tender opportunities
Opens: 01/03/2023 Closes: 22/02/2024
Horizon Europe funding for reducing plastic pollution, pollutant monitoring, circular economy, and biodegradation validation. Various closing dates.
Related Events and Recordings
Knowledge Transfer Manager - Smart Materials and Technical Textiles
Contact Stephen Morris
Mobilising demand for low carbon materials to achieve rapid industrial decarbonisation
On 24th May, Innovate UK, First Movers Coalition (FMC) and Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) co-convened a roundtable discussion to understand how demand for low carbon materials can rapidly decarbonise industry. The discussion centred on two key questions: why does demand matter and how can it be harnessed to decarbonise industry at scale and pace?
Resource Efficiency for Materials and Manufacturing feasibility study competition winners announced
This month Innovate UK announced the 20 participants selected to take part in the Resource Efficiency for Materials and Manufacturing (REforMM) feasibility study competition.
Programmes related to Materials
Metamaterials Landscape Map
Connecting the value chain of the UK Metamaterials community with industry, research expertise and business support to drive commercialisation.
Net Zero Chemicals Landscape
Connecting the UK’s growing Chemicals community with industrial collaborators, research-base expertise, investment opportunities and funders.
Circular Critical Materials Supply Chains
This £15 million programme will support the development of resilient UK based supply chains for rare earth elements. With a focus on primary (mine to magnet) and secondary (End of Life to magnet) supply chains.