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Sector News

Sector News

Space mission to ‘weigh’ Earth’s forests moves a step closer

A pioneering mission to measure the Earth’s forests from space has moved a step closer to launch following the signing of a contract to build the technology to do it.

The BIOMASS mission, led by Prof Shaun Quegan from the University of Sheffield’s School of Mathematics and Statistics, will use a revolutionary radar system to create a 3D map of the world’s forests in order to improve our understanding of how carbon is cycled through the Earth system.

£12 million contracts awarded to support nuclear decommissioning research

R&D framework contracts worth up to £12 million have been awarded to UK universities, global corporations and 20 SMEs by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).

Following a five-month procurement process, three new framework contracts were awarded to 10 consortia, involving more than 70 organisations and including three consortia led by SMEs. The contracts, last awarded in 2012, will run to 2020.

Agri-food innovation in Turkey: apply for business funding

 UK businesses can win a share of £1.5 million to work with Turkish businesses on solutions to challenges in the agri-food sector in Turkey.

Innovate UK is working with TÜBİTAK, the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey, to fund this competition.

‘The History of the Laboratory in Ten Objects’ campaign launches top International Lab Show

Organisers of the biennial International Scientific Laboratory Show & Conference to be held in Nottingham, England this May have launched a campaign to chronicle the ‘History of the Laboratory in Ten Objects’. Anyone with a passion for science can nominate the object they feel has had the greatest impact on lab-based scientific research over the last 200 years. 

Science & Innovation Audit Update

BIS has published an update note summarising activity on the progress of their Science & Innovation Audits which details the first wave of consortia, future deadlines and details of the SIA Advisory Panel.

Five areas have been selected to take part in the first ever Science and Innovation Audits (SIAs):

  • The Midlands Engine
  • Edinburgh and the Lothians City region
  • South West England and South East Wales
  • Sheffield City Region and Lancashire
  • Greater Manchester and East Cheshire


BIS Consultation - How can the UK can develop its innovation framework?


Government is seeking your views on how the UK can develop its innovation framework.

Innovation can transform lives. It can help us to face some of our biggest challenges, from energy supply and food security, to demographic change and the delivery of public services. It enables businesses to develop new ideas, products and services, and create new jobs and export opportunities.

Review backs UK’s "world-class" nuclear fusion programme

An independent review into nuclear fission and fusion research in the UK has backed the UK Atomic Energy Authority’s "world-class" fusion programme.

The Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) commissioned the review to guide its future strategy. The review panel consisted of nine UK and international nuclear experts and interviewed a range of representatives from the research community, industry and government in the course of its assessment.

Counting the cost of antimicrobial resistance

Antimicrobial resistance could reduce global GDP by up to 3.5% – a cumulative cost of $100 trillion – by 2050, Chancellor George Osborne has warned.

Osborne said that the latest evidence suggested that by 2050 10 million people a year could die globally as a result – which is more than currently die from cancer each year.

Health monitoring device adoption set to soar

A new study has estimated that the adoption of health monitoring devices will nearly treble by 2020, exceeding 70 million worldwide, up from an estimated 26 million this year.

Innovate UK publishes £561 million Delivery Plan

 Innovate UK has published its Delivery Plan for the year 2016/2017. The government’s official innovation agency said it will invest £561 million in innovation over the next 12 months and take a more “focused and efficient approach” to supporting innovative UK companies.

The Delivery Plan for the year 2016 to 2017 includes: