Pathways to Impact Award : University of Surrey

Lead Research Organisation: University of Surrey
Department Name: DVC (Research and Innovation)

Abstract

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description 1. 3D Milling
Technique used in a space-sector project where it was used to fabricate test devices for future interconnect materials. In other areas it has been used to produce devices for magnetometry, dosimetry and high-precision artifacts for optical and scanning probe microscopy.

2. Location Awareness
A software prototype that uses location data from the Global Positioning System (GPS) to enhance workflow and management of teams spread across different geographical locations.

3. Blind Source Separation
A low cost MEMS microphone software solution for use in mobile devices for improved speech recognition, noise reduction, privacy and improved audio functionality such as stereo recording and improved conference facilities.
Exploitation Route 1. 3D Milling
One of the most exciting aspects of the 3D milling technology, is the potential for future development. It is anticipated there could be a number of commercial uses for 3D milling, including nano imprint lithography, commercial digital lenses and surface plazmon resonance lenses.

2. Location Awareness
The software product that was developed as a result of the project, has applications across a number of sectors including: land management, conservation management, property development, installation management, project management, sensor data management and lettings management.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Agriculture, Food and Drink,Construction,Creative Economy,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Electronics,Energy,Environment,Healthcare,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Transport,Other

 
Description Having carefully considered how best to use Pathways to impact funding, resources were allocated to projects that would benefit the most in terms of advancing the progress and reach of EPSRC sponsored research. Three projects were funded and their findings have have been used as desccribed below under each project heading: 1). 3D Milling There is a growing industry for miniaturised devices, many on the micrometre or nanometre scale. The manufacture of such devices presents a challenge to the industry, particularly for devices which can be manufactured with high reliability and precision. The project demonstrated a method of manufacture of an extremely simple system that produces optical lenses operating as diffraction-limit-beating super resolution lenses. Several examples of the film lenses were produced and tested on conventional optical microscopes. the method developed for the simplest version is extremely low cost. They have been primarily designed for use in optical microscopy where there is a huge requirement to image beyond the diffraction limit, to image (for example) cell structure in vivo. 2). Location Awareness The results of this project led to the development of a software product that is currently available and in use by companies today. The project helped to form a company that is now currently incubated by the European Space Agency. The company was the European Satellite Navigation Competitor UK Winner of 2013. 3). Blind Source Separation 10 prototypes were designed, manufactured and tested, leading to a new patent filing in October 2011, and two further patent filings in 2013. A website, with demos, using the prototypes was created. Demo units were shown to potential licensees including a major mobile phone manufacturer in the far east which elucidated clear functional requirements which are being developed and tested.
First Year Of Impact 2011
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Electronics,Energy,Other
Impact Types Economic

 
Description IAA grant
Amount £5,880 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2014 
End 09/2015
 
Description Innovate UK
Amount £22,828 (GBP)
Organisation Innovate UK 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2015 
 
Title 3D Milling 
Description 3D milling is a method of manufacture that produces optical lenses operating as diffraction-limit-beating super resolution lenses. They are designed primarily for use in optical optical microscopy where there is a huge requirement to image beyond the diffraction limit, to image, for example, cell structure in vivo. The technique has been used in a space sector project where it was used to fabricate test devices for future interconnect materials. In other areas, it has been used to produce devices for magnetometry, dosimetry, and, most recently, high-precision artifacts for optical and scanning probe microscopy. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact 3D milling is a new process that will impact on the growing industry for miniaturised devices. It has led directly to a new product - super resolution lenses. 
 
Description 3D Milling Collaboration 
Organisation National Physical Laboratory
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The 3D Milling technology was developed with the help of the Ion Beam Centre at Surrey. DC's research into nanomanipulation at the University of Surrey's Advanced Technology Institute, resulted in the development of a tool that allows 3D milling at nanometre scale. PIA funding was allocated to help identify significant commerclal opportunities for the technology, and to understand how these opportunities may be realised. In addition to providing the underpinning research and developing the technology, DC worked with a specialist consultant engaged to identify opportunities, developing with them the project milestones and component work packages.
Collaborator Contribution As researchers discover more about the benefits of working with materials at a nano level, it is important that they have access to devices that allow them to analyse, measure and fabricate accurately. They need to further their understanding of temperature changes, electrical and magnetic effects and a range of other measurements that can affect materials engineered at this level. DC worked for two days a week at the National Physical Laboratory facilitated access to the devices and expertise needed in this regard.
Impact The technique has been used in a space-sector project where it was used to fabricate test devices for future interconnect materials. In other areas, it has been used to produce devices for magnetometry, dosimetry and, most recently, high-precision artifacts for optical and scanning probe microscopy.
Start Year 2010
 
Description Blind Source Separation: Elucidare 
Organisation Elucidare
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution The original EPSRC research by BG, developed an algorithm to separate multiple unknown audio sources in unknown environments in real time, using a very small microphone array. It differs from all previous methods by having many characteristics which would prove extremely useful for general applications. Funding, first from the KTA and subsequently from PIA, has been used to develop and test the principle of using sound separation to improve the clarity and understandability of sounds in a reverberant environment in order to provide the potential clients with an enhanced experience. PIA funding specifically facilitated the design of the physical layout of a MEMS microphone device with associated electronics and software programming. Funding further allowed researchers to apply the findings of their original research to different situations and conditions, thus exploiting the full potential of the new technology.
Collaborator Contribution 1. Developed and implemented the MEMS microphone ideas and demo units 2. Developed and maintains the website 3. Produced all demos on the website
Impact 1. MEMS microphone ideas 2. MEMS demo units 3. Website
Start Year 2010
 
Description Thoughtified External Collaboration 
Organisation Aggregate Industries
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution PIA funding allowed researchers to specifically and directly address GPS integration with spacial information integration in smartphones and tablet devices. Researchers were able to work on the early stages of the pilot system through required expert consultation and research on the exploitation of the current market. The pilot was tested with production data from the collaborative organisations. Researchers carried out ongoing work towards smartphone and tablet-compatible software by research into current methods as well as the implementation of a proof-of-concept prototype.
Collaborator Contribution The information and support offered by Aggregate Industries, primarily took the shape of advising on and discussing problems, issues and current methods in the management of remote assets and workers. Their input was vital as they wished to see a working prototype to consider adoption within their organisation.
Impact 1. Commercial opportunities identified 2. Market testing and analysis 3. Informed development of a pilot system 4. "Live" testing environment
Start Year 2010
 
Description Thoughtified External Collaboration 
Organisation The Wildlife Trusts
Department Surrey Wildlife Trust
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution PIA funding allowed researchers to specifically address GPS integration with spacial information integration in smartphones and tablet devices directly. Researchers were able to work on the early stages of the pilot system through required expert consultation and research on the exploitation of the current market. The pilot was tested with production data from the collaborative organisations. Researchers carried out ongoing work towards smartphone and tablet-compatible software by research into current methods as well as the implementation of a proof-of-concept prototype.
Collaborator Contribution This work was originally requested by the Surrey Wildlife Trust, and they offered information and support throughout the project. This primarily took the shape of advising on and discussing problems, issues and current methods with regard to conservation management. The Trust informed the development and testing of the pilot system.
Impact 1. Commercial opportunities identified 2. Market testing and analysis 3. informed development of a pilot system 4. "Live" testing environment
Start Year 2010
 
Title Acoustic Source Separation 
Description One of 3 patent filings for 3 patent families which are being pursued nationally in US/EU/Korea 
IP Reference WO2009050487 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact First patent family filed 2007, PCT2008, National 2010
 
Title Acoustic Source Separation 
Description One of 3 patent filings for 3 patent families which are being pursued nationally in US/EU/Korea 
IP Reference WO2013144609 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact Second patent family filed 2012, PCT2013, National 2014
 
Title Blind Source Separation 
Description A method of separating a mixture of acoustic signals from a plurality of sources. 
IP Reference WO2009050487 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact Elucidare - (July 2010) - still active, developed and implemented the MEMS microphone ideas and demo units. It should be noted that have been no commericial outputs yet. The prototypes were demo not for production. Further information can be found at: http://www.elucidare.co.uk/assignments/Project_BSS/abst_BSS.php
 
Title METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR PRODUCING THREE DIMENSIONAL NANO AND MICRO SCALE STRUCTURES 
Description A three-dimensional milling method and apparatus for milling micrometre and a nanometre scale three-dimensional structures. The apparatus includes an ion column (12) operable to generate a milling beam onto a substrate (20) held on an instrument stage (18). A patterning computer (22) is operable to control the ion column (12) to generate varying ion beam and/or dwell times or to produce a plurality of milling passes, in which subsequent passes overlap previous passes at least partially to create three-dimensional structures. Optionally, an SEM column (14) may be provided. 
IP Reference EP2415066 
Protection Patent granted
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact The development of a new process (3D milling) that has led to a new product - super resolution lenses.
 
Title Microphone Array for acoustic source separation 
Description One of 3 patent filings for 3 patent families which are being pursued nationally in US/EU/Korea 
IP Reference WO2014177855 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact Third patent family filed 2013, PCT2014, National 2015
 
Title 3D Milling Process 
Description 3D Milling is a new process that has facilitated a method of manufacture for super resolution lenses 
Type Of Technology Systems, Materials & Instrumental Engineering 
Year Produced 2010 
Impact Technique has been used in a space-sector project where it was used to fabricate test devices for future interconnect materials. In other areas it has been used to produce devices for magentometry, dosimetry and high-precision artifacts for optical and scanning probe microscopy. 
 
Title Blind Source Separation: Prototypes 
Description 10 Prototype MEMS microphones 
Type Of Technology Physical Model/Kit 
Year Produced 2011 
Impact 10 Prototypes designed, manufactured and tested, leading to a new patent filing in October 2011 and 2 further filings in 2013. Website with demos using the prototypes created: www.quaud.io. Demo units shown to potential licensees including a major mobile phone manufacturer in the far east. 
 
Title Blind Source Separation: Software 
Description A low cost MEMS microphone software solution for use in mobile devices for improved speech recognition, noise reduction, privacy and improved audio functionality such as stereo recording and improved conference facilities. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2011 
Impact Formed the basis for the design and manufacture of an inexpensive MEMS microphone version of the very expensive and impractically large microphone array used in the original research. 
 
Title Location Awareness: Software Application 
Description A software application for web and mobile that enables companies to manage their team, tasks and territory, using location information. The aim is to provide users with the right information at the right place at the right time. 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2013 
Impact Led to a company formation - ManagePlaces, through which the technology is commercialised. ManagePlaces are incubated by the European Space Agency. ManagePlaces was a UKESNC Winner in 2013. 
URL http://www.manageplaces.com/
 
Title Location Awareness: Software product 
Description A software prototype that uses location data from the Global Positioning System (GPS) to enhance workflow and management of teams spread across different geographical locations. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2011 
Impact Formed the basis for a software application commercialised through spin-out ManagePlaces 
URL http://www.manageplaces.com/
 
Company Name ManagePlaces 
Description ManagePlaces aims to help companies manage their work across different areas, projects, customers and assets. Their online system is designed to facilitate the management of a dispersed team, thus releasing management time. By linking activities to actual locations, on a computer, tablet or mobile, ManagePlaces reduces staff costs and saves user time by improving outputs and reporting. ManagePlaces was created initially to streamline the management of conservation projects. Through its effectiveness in this sector, it was decided to offer the product to businesses in other areas who face the same issues. ManagePlaces is incubated with the support of the European Space Agency. 
Year Established 2013 
Impact UK ESNC Winner 2013. Design of a software solution that uses location data from the Gllobal Positioning System (GPS) to enhance workflow and management of teams spread across different geographical locations.
 
Description Conference NANOP2016 Paris 7-9 Dec 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Dr Stolojan attended this conference as a speaker and member of the organising committee - talk titled "The manufacture of complex micro-optical elements on the ends of optical fibres, using a Focused Ion Beam Microscope". This talk discussed methods of manufacturing very small, specialised lenses in polymers and has led to Dr Stolojan, through collaborators at NPL, to be invited as a stakeholder in PhotIND EU project: http:www.photind.eu/ It also led to exploratory discussions with groups in France and Switzerland who are developing medical applications based on lenses on the end of fibres, such as endoscopes.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://programme.exordo.com/nanop2016/
 
Description Elucidare visit to CES Expo Las Vegas 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact CES EXPO, held annually in Las Vegas, is one of the biggest consumer electronics trade shows in the world. The intended purpose of Elucidare's attendance, was to look for potential users of the technology. There were 153,000 delegates and around 3000 exhibitor companies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Elucidare visit to CeBIT in Hanover 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact CeBIT is one of the biggest consumer electronics trade shows in the world. The purpose of Elucidare attendance was to promote its technology to potential users. There were 221,000 delegates, journalists and visitors, and around 3,300 exhibitors.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.cebit.de/en/exhibition/facts-figures/cebit-2016-factsheet