.

Research and Knowledge Exchange at Aston

These videos showcase the innovative Knowledge Exchange projects that Aston undertakes with a wide range of businesses. All of these projects are part-funded by Innovate UK, the UK's innovation agency.

To find out more on how your business could take part in a project like this, please email
rke@aston.ac.uk



Overview of Research and Knowledge Exchange

Majestic’s got hundreds of thousands of users around the world. We’ve got customers from 113 different countries.

Seawater Greenhouse specialises in tailor-making horticultural solutions for hot and desert environments. The most affected are the local communities, they don’t have access to the infrastructure that most of the Western world has access to. 

At Optimec we design and manufacture metrology for the contact lens manufacturing industry. We realised that we probably needed some specialist help and Aston was the logical choice frankly. 

It made absolute sense to have the Academic power house out of Aston joining us to inform our research. 

Aston University has the reputation for applied research and in particular we have a focus on the needs of business and the professions. 

KTP is part-funded by Innovate UK.

Because Aston had these processes in place to bring together firms and academics with the respective experience and expertise it was a quite easy match to look at ways to actually visualise the data, create some form of data visualisations.

We contribute on the more scientific part of the project, particularly modelling of Seawater Greenhouse systems in order to optimise their performance. 

We create microaces that permeate the local land, originating from the greenhouses that we build in these areas were able to arid landscape into cultivatable growing land. 

This project was particularly interesting to us because it utilised research that we’d done and was able to translate this research into a new product.

The partnership with Aston has been phenomenal.  The commercial acumen of Aston combined with the excellent location for us made them an ideal choice.

The great thing about a KTP project was that the university and the company all had a common objective.

We had expertise in the technology, they had expertise in the actual measurement of contact lenses. 

The fillup in this team that research allows us to model and stimulate the greenhouse environment before we’ve actually built it, which for us as a design tool is invaluable because it allows us optimise the greenhouse before we even build it.

Working in a multi-disciplinary team and seeing the design and the neutrology all come together in one finished product at the end of the project. The benefit of this specific innovation really is more reliable insights and predictions as to what’s going to happen in the future to any data on the internet.

We are working on real world solutions and to be a part of that is something I am very proud and happy to be a part of.


Seawater Greenhouse


Seawater Greenhouse are a London-based company that design greenhouse solutions for hot and dry coastal regions, often where agriculture would otherwise be impossible. 

"Fresh water is maybe 2% of all the water resources in the world. 70% of fresh water is used for agriculture. The Somali Land project is a collaborative research and development project that is joined funded by Innovate UK. The most problematic areas would be sub sovereign Africa, South Asia, India, Pakistan and anywhere where there are hot and dry conditions. 

Seawater Greenhouse specialises in tailor making agricultural solutions for hot and desert environments. We’re able to utilise salt water to cool a greenhouse and to minimise the amount of fresh water you need to grow crops.

We create micro-oases that permeate the local land, originating from the greenhouses that we build in these areas were able to arid landscape into cultivatable growing land. It made absolute sense to have the Academic power house out of Aston joining us to inform our research.

We contribute on the more scientific part of the project, particularly modelling of Seawater Greenhouse systems in order to optimise their performance. 

What we’re really trying to do with this latest version of the Seawater Greenhouse is to actually make it as low cost as possible.

Phillip and his team's research allows us to model and stimulate the greenhouse environment before we’ve actually built it, which for us as a design tool is invaluable because it allows us optimise the greenhouse before we even build it.

We are working on real world solutions and that is something I am very proud of, and happy to be a part of.


Majestic


Majestic, based at Innovation Birmingham, surveys and maps the Internet and has created the largest commercial Link Intelligence database in the world.

Big data analysis is at an embryonic state, so right now not many people know how to analyse this data.

Majestic is a specialist search engine, it allows us to understand how that data changes over time. Majestic has got 100s and 1000s users across the world, we’ve got customers in a 113 different countries, were crawling 60,000 pages a second, in a minute Twitter say there something like 50,000 tweets a second, in the same minute we are crawling 60,000 webpages.

One of the problems that we had is that this is used for very specific purposes and we wanted to have a look at other ways using this massive data set. We realised we probably needed some specialist help.

Aston had these processes in place to bring together firms and academics with the respective experience and expertise it was a quite easy match to look at ways to actually visualise the data, create some form of data visualisations.

The partnership with Aston has been phenomenal.  The commercial acumen of Aston combined with the excellent location for us made them an ideal choice.

The benefit of this specific innovation really is more reliable insights and predictions as to what’s going to happen in the future to any data on the internet.


Optimec


Optimec, based in Malvern, is a world leader in the provision of inspection and measurement instrumentation for the contact lens and intraocular lens manufacturing industry.

It has always been difficult to measure hydrated contact lenses in a transparent fluid and that is where Optimec has excelled. 

 At Optimec we design and manufacture metrology for the contact lens manufacturing industry.

Better existing geometric measurement systems in which typically focus on one parameter using OCT allows us to measure multiple parameters across the whole lens.

We are looking towards developing new instrumentation to be able to provide the measurement, parameters that these new lenses demand. 

Aston University has the reputation for applied research and in particular we have a focus on the needs of business and the professions. This project was particularly interesting to us because it utilised research that we’d done and was able to translate this research into a new product.

The great thing about a KTP project was that the university and the company all had a common objective.

We had expertise in the technology, they had expertise in the actual measurement of contact lenses. 

We were working in a multi-disciplinary team and seeing the design and the neutrology all come together in one finished product at the end of the project.