Innovate UK opens €2 million funding competition for photonics research

Innovate UK, an R&D and technology accelerator, has opened a funding round for research in photonics technologies, the science of generating, detecting and manipulating photonic particles.

In collaborative research and development (CR&D) projects the funding will be used to develop photonics technologies in advance manufacturing, including 3D printing. The successful competitor will receive an award between €750,000 and €2 million.

Dispersion of white light into photons through a prism. Image via Fine Art America.
Dispersion of white light into photons through a prism. Image via Fine Art America.

EUREKA Network in Photonics

In the past, Innovate UK has arranged funding for several 3D printing projects which include Open Architecture Additive Manufacturing and research in post-processing.

For photonics research, Innovate UK set up the EUREKA Network in Photonics in partnership with Photonics21 Mirror Group. The Mirror Group is a network of European industry leaders in photonics research.

Funding for Innovate UK photonics research competition will be available through the EUREKA Network in Photonics. To be eligible for the award a UK-based company must partner with one of Eureka Network in Photonics countries which include Austria, France, Germany, Israel, Poland, and Switzerland.

The Network in Photonics is part of EUREKA, a network of intergovernmental bodies established in 1985. The purpose of the organization is to stimulate market-oriented R&D and innovation projects. In the last thirty years, EUREKA has been involved in more than 6000 R&D international projects worth over £37 billion.

Photons and manufacturing

The project call is open to businesses and organizations of all sizes focused on photonics research for civilian applications. For UK businesses it is essential that they are eligible to receive state funding.

Including photonics, one of the following technologies must be the subject of the research: laser machining, 3D printing, photonics curing, selective laser sintering, and LiDAR. (The list is not exclusive).

In addition to this, the solutions developed in the program must have an application in electronics, computers, aerospace and automotive industry, and others listed in the project call.

To be considered for the award, candidates must apply before 25 July 2019. Furthermore, the collaborative program should be expected to start between January 2020 and June 2020 and last up to three years.

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Feature image shows the dispersion of white light into photons through a prism. Image via Fine Art America.