Energy Technology Centre
Research and development in sustainable energy technology boosted by £1.1 million
Date: 20 June 2007
Author: Lucy Robb
Scotland’s national centre of excellence in sustainable energy technology, development and commercialisation has been boosted by Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire.
The local enterprise company has announced funding of £1.1 million to scale up the activities of the Energy Technology Centre (ETC) in East Kilbride.
Established in 2006 in response to growing demand for efficient, renewable and sustainable energy sources, the ETC is the first facility of its kind in Scotland. It offers a national service to support pioneering businesses and assist them to turn sustainable energy technology into commercial success.
The ETC provides a combination of specialist facilities, equipment, suppliers and expertise under one roof and provides an entry point into Scotland’s wider network of sustainable energy R&D capability. It aims to showcase new technologies and transform research breakthroughs into marketable products. The centre focuses on the growing market for more sustainable technology solutions to energy generation and use, which covers renewable energy, sustainable transport and energy efficiency applications.
Following an 18 month pilot, initial evaluation of the ETC has indicated that the project has generated around £2.5 million gross value added (GVA) for the Scottish economy. The funding of £1.1 million from Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire will support the project until 2010 and allow it to increase its activities.
Estimated economic benefits for the project over the next seven to ten years are in the region of £50 million (GVA), the equivalent of 420 new jobs with an anticipated £100 million to £250 million worth of wider social impacts.
Liz Connolly, senior operations director, Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire said “Unique in Scotland, the ETC provides a national service to support the commercialisation of sustainable energy technologies.
“To date, the economic impact has been impressive and the continued funding will allow the centre to provide a flexible offering to clients. There is access to a range of services including performance testing equipment and space, provision of market advice, access to supply chain companies and support to help them commercialise their technologies.
“The service is customised to the individual client’s requirements and takes account of the potential economic impact within each project.
“Sustainability is an area where Lanarkshire is gaining an impressive reputation and Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire is working on a number of initiatives to ensure that this continues.”
The ETC is based on the site of the former UK Government National Vehicle and Engine Test Centre in East Kilbride. Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire’s support has breathed new life into the facility and has saved a valuable national asset which is now supporting Scotland’s efforts to be at the forefront of developing and commercialising next generation sustainable energy technologies.
A number of academics, entrepreneurs, SMEs and multi-nationals have benefited from support provided through the ETC.
Dr G. Lindsay, Technical Director of Fuel Cells (Scotland) Ltd has used the ETC to evaluate the performance of its innovative fuels cell technology. He said "The forward-thinking approach to the creation of the Energy Technology Centre is welcomed, and meets many of the needs of emergent renewable devices such as our own. To have a facility with both equipment and expertise on site, has allowed us to evaluate various fuel cell operational parameters in a manner we would not otherwise have been able to do.”
Artemis Intelligent Power Limited Scotland is a spin-out company from the University of Edinburgh that is developing ground breaking technologies for both the transport and wind sectors. Dr Win Rampen, Managing Director, Artemis Intelligent Power, said “Scotland has, to my knowledge, only one accessible rolling road for vehicle testing and it is at the ETC. During our earlier hybrid vehicle development programme, before the ETC opened, we tried to find this kind of facility without success. The fact that it has now been recommissioned has moved us massively ahead. We can now test vehicles at a comfortable distance from our own base without the extra expense of overnight lodging and long distance vehicle trailering.
“The friendly environment in the ETC allows us to work very much in the way we do in our own lab. We were made to feel welcome and trained to use the equipment ourselves so that we could maximise the benefit of our time in the facility.”
Today’s news reflects Scottish Enterprise’s commitment to the energy sector, as one of six key priority industries for Scotland.
More information on the Energy Technology Centre can be found online www.scottish-enterprise.com/energytechnologycentre
Notes to editors
For more information please contact: