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Monday, 09 May 2016 13:22

Significant SME Interest in DUTE Cluster at Recent Showcase Event

On 17th March the Dual-Use Technology Exploitation (DUTE) Cluster held its first Open Day at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in London. The purpose of the day was to showcase current DUTE partners, and explain the opportunities that exist for organisations considering engaging in dual-use technology.

The successful event saw a maximum capacity audience including an even split of SME’s, Tier 1 Suppliers & Primes, Universities, Trade & Government agencies. Chris Owen, DUTE Programme Director from Lead Partner, Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group, kicked off the day by explaining the origins of the DUTE Cluster, its progress to date, and its growth ambitions. Current DUTE partners also presented updates on their innovative use cases to the cross-industry audience which included representatives from the Defence, Security, Advanced Manufacturing, Electronics, Rail and Automotive sectors. Participants also heard from speakers from multiple Government agencies, such as BIS, UKTI, DSC and MoD, who revealed how the concepts of dual-use technologies align to governmental strategic objectives. Presentations from Ploughshare, British Antarctic Survey and DGP Skills group gave examples of how they have benefited from dual-use opportunities. The day ended with news from several Funding Agencies who revealed how future dual-use projects could be publically funded via Innovate UK, Rail Growth Fund and EU opportunities.

One of the benefits of the day was to give attendees the opportunity to be involved with the next stage of growth of the DUTE cluster, and following the event, over 20 % of the delegates requested further engagement with the cluster. Feedback from delegates included comments such as “The day was very effective at communicating a range of interesting opportunities for partnership and funding” and “It gave me the opportunity to meet target individuals and new ones”. If you would like to have more information about the Open Day event, plus have the ability to register interest in DUTE, please contact the programme office (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or visit our website at www.dute.co.uk.  

Dual-Use Technology Exploitation (DUTE) DUTE is a £10 million project supported by Government and Industry, created to identify and leverage technologies from adjacent sectors such as rail and civil aerospace, and put them to dual use. It harnesses the UK’s vibrant community of SMEs, recognising the trend for greater investment in the civil domain, and augments it as a way to stimulate growth for defence exports. Through DUTE, cross-sector fertilisation of thought and development will generate disruptive technologies for customers. Supported by an Innovation Cluster, there is a strong focus on connecting UK manufacturers with high-growth SMEs and technology start-ups, with the Cluster providing mentoring and technology showcasing opportunities as well as engendering innovation. The £10.3 million project includes £6.5 million of government funding from the AMSCI (Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative) 2014 competition. The 15 partners involved in DUTE are Marshall Aerospace & Defence Group, Saietta Group, Airbus Helicopters, Cranfield University, C-Tech Innovation, Haydale Composite Solutions, Horsebridge Network Systems, KS Composites, NetComposites, Pro2Pro, Rinicom, SHD Composites, Sheffield Hallam University, TWI and XeraCarb.