Plymouth-based technology development business, Frontier Technical Ltd has secured Marine Business Technology Centre (MBTC) European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) funding for a £5,000 project.
The business, which recently relocated to Plymouth Science Park, conducts research and development into economically viable floating offshore wind solutions.
From April 2020, the funding awarded to Frontier Technical Ltd will enable them to access consultancy services from Devon-based specialist suppliers.
- GA Solicitors commercial lawyers will provide expertise to help develop an R&D Collaboration Agreement for a 7-Party Innovate UK project with a Floating Energy Platform test in Plymouth planned for Summer 2021.
- IWH Group will apply naval marine business and logistics expertise to support the Frontier Technical business planning.
- Sharrah Systems will bring expertise from the submarine technology sector to help develop control systems for underwater construction of large structures.
The company has developed an innovative new Controllable Float Module System, which enables easy transportation by conventional ISO shipping containers where local infrastructure and human resource is minimal or absent. This technology makes the construction of offshore projects – such as wind turbines – easier, safer and more cost-effective. The company hopes the technology will help countries increase their production of sustainable energy, and support a reduction in global carbon reliance.
As well as green energy, the technology can also be used in other ‘Blue Economy’ industries such as Aquaculture, Desalination, Salvage, Abandoned Asset Recovery, Subsea Heavy Lifting, Floating Quaysides, Defence and Security, and Autonomous Underwater Energy Transfer and Storage Systems.
Trevor Hardcastle Managing Director at Frontier Technical said: “We moved the business to Plymouth at the end of 2019 to help us access the region’s expertise in underwater technology and the autonomous control of underwater vehicles. Four months later, we are already seeing benefits far greater than we could have hoped for.
“The South West boasts excellent skills sets from the University of Plymouth and Exeter University as well as highly skilled naval architects, Artificial Intelligence ‘AI’ developers, computer scientists, subsea control and navigation system experts. The region is an exciting place to be innovating in the technology and marine sector.
“The Marine Business Technology Centre funding is so important for the SME at this development stage. It is a fantastic boost which will enable us to access and benefit from specialist consultancy support which would not otherwise have been possible. We are looking forward to doing more work with The Marine Business Technology Centre, as well as other academic and specialist institutions in the region.”
The MBTC is a partnership led by Plymouth City Council with the University of Plymouth, the University of Exeter, Plymouth Marine Laboratory and the Marine Biological Association.
Councillor Tudor Evans OBE, Leader of Plymouth City Council, said: “The MBTC provides a gateway for local marine businesses to access comprehensive research and development support as well as cutting-edge facilities and expertise, all free of charge. Our aim is to help business get ahead, just as we’re doing here with the support being given to Frontier Technical to aid the production of these innovative marine solutions.”
Fay Davies, Business Development Manager at Plymouth Science Park, said: “We are delighted to hear that Frontier Technical Ltd has been awarded this funding since moving to the region. The vast network of marine specialists, engineering experts and talented graduates here in Plymouth is helping them to commercialise this innovative technology.
“The ‘Blue Economy’ is a key engine behind the success of the tech sector in the South West, and we look forward to supporting Frontier Technical Ltd as they continue to grow, recruit and innovate in this area from their headquarters at Plymouth Science Park.”
To find out more about Frontier Technical Ltd visit: https://plymouthsciencepark.com/business-directory/marine/