C-POD prepared for deployment through winter sea ice in Finland

University of Exeter KTP team reaches Top Ten

The University of Exeter has reached the Top Ten for the number of Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) awarded nationally, delivering 19 active, high quality, KTP projects across the UK.  

Funded by Innovate UK, KTPs are a cost-effective way for organisations to access new expertise and recruit a highly qualified graduate to accelerate business growth. Supported by an academic supervisor from the University, KTP associates work to solve a company’s problem or innovate a new product.

KTPs at the University of Exeter span a range of sectors including data science, engineering, business management and mathematics.

Cornwall-based Chelonia Ltd, who design and manufacture acoustic underwater devices which monitor the presence of odontocetes such as dolphins, whales and porpoises, began a KTP with the University in October.

KTP associate Dr. Eric Grist is developing statistical methods which improve the devices’ level of estimation. The devices, called C-POD and F-POD, are used by conservationists and governments around the world to assess where dolphins are and their exposure to potentially lethal fishing gear, as well as changes in populations, trends and densities.

Dr. Nick Tregenza, Director at Chelonia Ltd said: “Our associate, known here as Eric the Mathematician, has helped us gain an understanding of the surprising relationships between pure and applied statistics and this has enabled us to understand far more in this area, which is crucial to users of our products.”

“We are working towards a publication on this work that will, we expect, create a step change in the way we are seen within our industry.”

The University’s KTPs with Supacat Ltd, part of the SC Group, manufacturer of high mobility defence vehicles, have gained national recognition for leading the way in green innovation, in the off-road transport industry. The first project, which saw Engineering experts pioneer a new, electric-drive version of Supacat’s All Terrain Mobility Platform, has just been shortlisted for the prestigious national KTP ‘Best of the Best’ Awards.

The second KTP with SC Group has seen KTP associate Yashovardhan Katare develop an 'optionally-manned' system which can switch between manned and autonomous modes, allowing the vehicle to be driven through dangerous terrains and environments. 

Yashovardhan said: “The KTP has been a great experience, due to the amount of things I have learnt from the company and having seen how research can be carried out in an industrial role and an academic one. It has had a very positive impact on my career as I have developed new skillsets which can be applied to lots of sectors”.

KTPs aim to help organisations improve their competitiveness and productivity through better use of the knowledge, technology and skills held within the UK knowledge base.

Sean Fielding, Director of Innovation, Impact and Business at the University of Exeter said: “Knowledge Transfer Partnerships are a brilliant way for ambitious businesses to gain access to the latest high-tech R&D and creative thinking.  We are very proud of the contribution our researchers and students are making to business growth and we are absolutely delighted to have made the UK top ten.”

Find out more about KTPs at the University of Exeter.

Date: 28 July 2020

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