Innovate UK’s Catapults highlighted as catalysts for innovation

Last month’s Autumn Statement has again acknowledged the pivotal role of our Catapults as strategic national innovation assets.

In total, Innovate UK has provided an additional £50 million for Catapults to spearhead high-impact infrastructure investments across key strategic themes recognised by the government. This recognition underscores the significance of Catapults in the UK’s innovation ecosystem and their ability to drive impact.

Innovate UK’s Catapults

Established by Innovate UK in 2011, our Catapults provide a unique combination of cutting-edge research and development (R&D) facilities and world-class technical expertise to support UK business innovation. Catapults are a critical element of Innovate UK’s portfolio of products and services – our overall offer to drive business innovation in the UK.

There are nine Catapults, working in over 50 locations, in every region and nation of the UK:

Our Catapult network include hubs, laboratories, testbeds, and model factories, each powered by experts who bring innovators together, within and across supply chains, to develop and demonstrate breakthrough products, services, and technologies.

They work across the boundary between universities and business, accelerating translation, helping innovative businesses get their high potential ideas to market. They drive innovation, support businesses, nurture sectors, and catalyse additional private sector investment in R&D in the UK.

Their significance extends further as part of the UK’s innovation ecosystem, contributing to the broader objectives of levelling up, developing future skills, and fostering equality and diversity within the ecosystem.

A signal of further support

The additional £50 million in funding outlined in this year’s Autumn Statement will spearhead a range of individual and cross-Catapult projects. These align with Innovate UK’s healthy living and agriculture, digital and technologies, and net zero domains.

The projects include:

  • £8.8 million for Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult to enable electrical testing and energy storage for the next generation of wind turbines
  • £5 million for Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult to develop digitised and automated advanced therapy manufacturing
  • £4 million to expand the Compound Semiconductor Application Catapult’s Future Telecoms Hub at the Bristol & Bath Science Park
  • £2.7 million for the Connected Places Catapult to progress development of a Connected Airport living lab
  • £27 million for High Value Manufacturing Catapult to drive industrial green transformation projects
  • £1.5 million to Manufacturing Technology Centre, part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, to progress new technologies to rapidly identify and quantify the condition of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete across a range of public buildings

These high-impact infrastructure investments will allow our Catapults to drive innovation-powered growth all over the UK.

Innovate UK’s commitment

This announcement is a year on from last year’s Autumn Statement, which announced that Innovate UK would be investing £1.6 billion in Catapults – a 35% increase over the next five years.

Innovate UK is working closer than ever before with each of our Catapults to generate more impact, foster enhanced strategic coherence, and ensure optimal value with innovative businesses for the taxpayer.

Once again, the Autumn Statement has highlighted the pivotal role of Catapults in our innovation ecosystem.

Further information

Go to the Catapult UK website.

Follow Innovate UK on X (previously Twitter).

Connect with Innovate UK on LinkedIn.

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Go to the Innovate UK website.

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Top image:  Vattenfall turbine at Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm. Credit: Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult

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