By yeowatzup from Katlenburg-Lindau, via Wikimedia Commons
The UK Government has announced the British aerospace sector is set to benefit from up to £90 million in funding in order to develop new, advanced technologies.
This is good news for 3D printing and additive manufacturing companies on the supply chain, as aerospace and defence are two of the industry's most lucrative customers.
Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon announced that £50 million in competitive funding has been made available in a bid to stoke innovation, while a £40 million national supply chain partnership has been given the green light by decision-makers.
Speaking at the Paris Air Show, the politician unveiled his plans to hold a competitive call for businesses through the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) for up to £25 million in government funding. This investment will finance collaborative research and technology programmes that are in line with the objectives of the Aerospace Industrial Strategy.
The scheme is focusing on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the aerospace supply chain who will be invited later on this year to submit bids for a portion of the fund. The £25 million will be match funded by the winning businesses, creating up to £50 million in total investment.
Mr Fallon stated: "We have a world-leading aerospace sector underscored by our ability to excel in areas like research and development. It's this commitment to innovation through our Aerospace Industrial Strategy that will be a crucial driver for long-term growth.
"If we are to get ahead of the game we must create the right conditions now that incentivise businesses to invest in the UK and develop new, exciting products. This new funding will help to do just that and also ensure a high level of quality projects receive the support they need to get off the ground."
This will be the first call of its kind utilising some of the £2 billion joint Government and industry kitty dedicated to supporting the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI).
Moreover, also being launched at the Paris Air Show is the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), which is led by the Aerospace Growth Partnership to address skills shortages and to improve research and development collaboration.
This £40 million project is backed by £23 million from the second round of the Government's Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) and £17 million from the industry.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer of aerospace trade organisation ADS Graham Chisnall remarked: "NATEP will embed important new technology and capability into the UK supply chain. Helping smaller companies to invest and develop new technologies will help us achieve long term competitive advantage. This funding shows that the work of the Aerospace Growth Partnership is delivering benefits at all levels of the supply chain and closely co-ordinates with the work of the ATI."