Our research impact
One mechanism for creating impact used by WestCHEM is that of spin-out company formation based on IP created by members. Since 2000, 8 spin-out companies have been formed, 4 of these from 2008. In total, these companies now employ 55 people. The earliest spin-out company, Xstalbio is featured as a REF 2014 impact case study and continues to generate impact. A second company, D3 Technologies became Renishaw Diagnostics Ltd, and has raised >£12M of funding to date. Others remain early stage but are likely to feature in future assessments. WestCHEM has an investor partnership with the IPGroup who are currently in the process of investing £1.2M in new spinouts.
ESPRC Knowledge Transfer Accounts (KTAs)
In 2009, we were awarded ESPRC Knowledge Transfer Accounts (KTAs), which were designed to increase the volume of ESPRC-related research outputs delivering impact beyond academia and to foster a more entrepreneurial culture in the academic community. WestCHEM was well placed to benefit from both awards and twelve academics were funded to a total of £898k bringing in an additional £230k of industrial funding One outstanding success of this KTA funding has been in hydrogen storage, which led to €2.2M EU funding through the JTI project HYPER and €1.7M industrial matching funding from EADS (Germany), hydrogen storage system manufacturers McPhy (France), fuel cell manufacturers Paxitech (France), the IEn in Poland, and the EU JRC (Netherlands). The aim of the project is to construct H2 power systems to be used in UAV (drone) and portable battery recharger demonstrators.