Centre for Defence Enterprise runs £10M ‘Defence Growth Innovation Challenge’

The £10 million Ministry of Defence funded ‘DGP Innovation Challenge’ was announced at the opening of DGP’s UK Defence Solutions Centre (UKDSC) in March 2015.

The MOD’s Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) will be the mechanism to run the series of 4 SBRI themed competitions against which industry and academia can submit their innovative ideas and bid for funding.

The first 2 themed competitions are on the subjects of training and persistent surveillance.

Competition winners for these first competitions will be announced in September 2015.

UKDSC is an independent body, bringing together representatives from large companies in the defence industry in a collaborative space to address export opportunities. UKDSC staff are seconded from the defence industry and operate under MOD and industry non-disclosure agreements to protect the intellectual property of bidders.

Richard Brooks, Delivery Director at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), says: “UKDSC, working closely with Dstl, has identified themes where significant challenges exist for defence and there are attractive future export markets. The competitions are looking for innovative proof-of-concept research proposals for solutions against these themes.”

Jim Pennycook, Head of Operations at CDE, says: “Our association with UKDSC will provide successful bidders from these competitions with a unique opportunity to explore potential exploitation routes for their technologies with the UK defence industry.”

Collaboration between bidders will be encouraged. Each competition will have up to £2.5 million available over 2 phases; up to £1 million for phase 1 with at least £1.25 million for phase 2. Phase-2 funding will be available to the most successful projects from phase 1 and collaboration will be encouraged.