Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project (HIIP)

The five-year HIIP Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project (HIIP) has been funded through £2.9m from the LEP and £1.35m from the University of Huddersfield.

This provides a range of in a range of advanced technologies, software and equipment including additive manufacturing, generative design, x-ray scanning, virtual reality and visualisation, microscopy and eye-tracking. Click here for full details.

Through the HIIP, businesses in the region have access to the following capabilities based at the 3M BIC:

  • Scanning for reverse engineering and product improvement.
  • Algorithmic design for light-weighting and topology optimisation.
  • Eye tracking tools to assess reaction to existing and new products, marketing and comprehension.
  • Additive manufacture in polymers and metals, including supported services and hands-on facilities.
  • Inspection and measurement equipment – advanced optical and laser microscopy.
  • Industrial x-ray computerised tomography (XCT) for diagnostics and design.
  • Videography, animation and virtual/augmented reality for simulations, modelling and training.

The Byte

A self-service area (with support) where businesses are encouraged to try technologies for themselves, including:

  • Makerbot, Ultimaker 3 and Formlab 2 3D printers
  • Oculus Rift, VIVE, Microsoft MR (HP) and PlayStation VR equipment
  • 4K videography camera
  • Helix Deleted (now in G/20)
  • Display quality A2 colour printing

The Additive Manufacturing (AM) Centre

Boasting additive manufacture capabilities in both metals and polymers for prototyping. Technology includes:

  • Renishaw RenAM 500 and RenAM 400 – additive manufacturing systems for selective laser melting (SLM) direct printing in titanium, stainless steel and a range of metals for rapid prototyping and limited quantity, custom production runs.
  • Polymer additive manufacture using nylon selective laser sintering (SLS), stereolithography (SLA) with UV-sensitive resins and filament deposition (FDM)
  • Post processing for heat treatment, part removal, finishing and verification

Zeiss Imaging Suite

This suite includes capabilities for microscopy and metrology to support product verification.

  • LSM880 laser confocal microscope system with Airyscan and
  • Axio Observer.Z1 inverted microscope for biological studies
  • SmartZoom 5 and SmartProof 5 microscopes for materials science and part investigations such as surface roughness and topography characterisation
  • EVO MA10 scanning electron microscope (SEM) with X-max 50 EDS
  • Stemi 508 compact Greenough stereo microscope
  • Bruker Icon atomic forces microscope (AFM)

Inspection Suite

  • Nikon 225 metrology grade x-ray CT scanner for internal and external examination and verification of parts made by AM and other methods

3D Visualisation Capabilities

  • High-end graphic workstations for CAD and product visualisation
  • Business data visualisation using a range of PC and mainframe software designed to identify and visualise market, customer and supply chain trend to improve competitiveness and profitability
  • Tobii eye-tracking to provide key information on ‘how’ your clients view your products and whether your messages on benefits, safety, etc. are being received and understood as you intend

How do SMEs access the HIIP facilities?

SMEs can access from the extensive range of HIIP equipment and software to help business innovation and productivity improvement, with the benefit of not having to make high capex investment to afford advanced technology in-house.

UK-based businesses are welcome to use the facilities with the supervision and guidance of our technology specialists. We will:

  • Sign a Non-disclosure agreement (NDA) with you to protect commercial confidentiality
  • Scope out your requirement to fully understand the challenge or opportunity
  • Advise on the best combination of specialist equipment and/or software plus any design support from our in-house design team
  • Undertake any exploratory work to check the project is viable, usually free of charge
  • If so, quote for the technician/design time and any materials involved (we cover the costs of maintaining and housing the equipment through the HIIP)
  • Advise on the various sources of grant support available, including the University of Huddersfield’s ‘First Steps’ grant and LEP innovation funds, as appropriate
  • Undertake your project to the agreed timescale and budget
  • Offer to feature a case study of the innovation involved on our website and for wider PR benefits with you, if and when the piece of work undertaken goes into the public domain.

Simply contact the 3M BIC tech team using the link here, with an idea of your interest, and we will contact you to discuss how we can support your business.

Our Supporters

Minister of Housing, Communities and Local Government, Simon Clarke, said:

“What a fantastic facility this is.  Both staff and students should be very proud of what it being enabled in this space.  This is a template for what we ought to be looking to energise more widely throughout the North and across the country.  I’ve never seen such a closer partnership between education and enterprise, evidenced by the sheer cutting-edge nature of the equipment and the enthusiasm of the staff.  It’s a visit that will definitely stay with me.”

Get in touch with the team for more information...

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