Can the UK retain its lead in the technology of the future?

The UK has a 55% share of the global market in the compound semiconductors (CS) that power 3G/4G wireless communications and a 90% share in the CS that are behind advanced facial recognition software in smartphones and other devices.

But it has only a 9% share of the global market in devices actually made using CS – and that is where the value-add lies.

The government has invested £50m in a new Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult, whose job it will be to encourage the development of a mature supply chain in the UK that can develop products from the core CS technology being developed by a cluster of companies in South Wales.

Nick Peters spoke with the new Catapult’s CEO Stephen Doran: