R&D funding for extreme robotics & AI projects

Innovate UK has announced up to £10m in grant funding for businesses working on robotics and artificial intelligence (RAI) technologies designed for extreme and challenging environments.

UK Oil and Gas Off Shore Oil Rig Platform
Offshore oil platform on the North Sea.

The funding is an effort to encourage and stimulate the development of robotics and artificial intelligence (RAI) technologies that would be used across the off-shore and nuclear energy, space and deep mining application and other hazardous environments.

Proposals should demonstrate a potential step change in system capabilities, and clearly identify the operational scenarios for the environments in which the RAI technologies would be used, with cross-cutting solutions particularly welcomed.

Projects should range in size from total costs of £50,000 to £2m, according to Innovate UK, and proposals should be submitted no later than midnight on Wednesday 2 August.

Examples could include, but are not limited to:

  • new materials, for example, lightweight with improved mechanical capabilities and long life in extreme environments
  • improved robotic structural capabilities
  • novel telecommunication systems
  • new sensor devices, for example, for low-light operation, or force and tactile sensors
  • miniaturised sensors, components and integrated sub-systems
  • improved machine vision systems
  • in-situ materials characterisation and inspection
  • novel power-efficient devices and systems
  • radiation-tolerant electronics
  • AI/situational awareness
  • mission planning and risk management
  • accurate navigation, localisation and mapping
  • systems engineering including verification and validation tools and methodologies

For more information on submitting an application, please visit the funding competition page, here.

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