Lack of confidence and procrastination are common issues that block individuals from identifying and achieving their personal and career goals. Negative thinking and the resulting patterns of behavior can be very difficult to change, especially when they are reinforced through self-fulfilling prophecies and embedded beliefs about oneself. Achieving happiness, fulfillment and attaining career goals are possible for everyone. Practical techniques like interview performance can be learnt, and self-limiting beliefs can evolve.
Innovative engineering firm expands its expertise from the trawling of the sea bed to dredging of radioactive sludge on nuclear sites. Engineering firm Barrnon Ltd has used its expertise in providing durable trawling gear for fishermen to develop a new technique for removing nuclear waste. The business developed its Bladecutter technology with the help of an Innovate UK award. The dredging system has been used to remove radioactive sludge in large ponds on historic nuclear sites. Removing the sludge demands the same heavy duty dredging gear operating in a harsh environment such as the sea bed. The technology has opened up a worldwide market worth an estimated £100 million. Bladecutter used in decommissioning of nuclear plant Bladecutter and its improved successor, Bladecutter 2, were successfully used in the decommissioning of Hunterston nuclear power station. Barrnon has since developed a complete suite of innovative nuclear decommissioning equipment, incorporating emerging technologies such as robotics and virtual reality. The company now works alongside engineering giants such as Atkins, Toshiba, TEPCO and IHI Corporation to tackle environmental threats at nuclear sites worldwide – including Sellafield, UK; Fukushima, Japan; and Hanford, USA. This case study has been republished under the Open Government Licence v3.0
Partnership helps firm to produce its own cost-effective, energy-efficient concrete and quadruple profits in 3 years. Concrete specialist Taranto quadrupled its profits, cut costs by 25% and reduced energy use by 30% after taking part in a Knowledge Transfer Partnership. The business worked with Queen’s University Belfast to develop in-house knowledge of concrete mix design. Now it can test and optimise locally sourced aggregates to produce its own cost-effective, energy-efficient concrete. The decision to invest in research and development at a time of economic downturn in Northern Ireland’s construction industry increased both the profit margins and the number of customers for its concrete products. Taranto saved £100,000 in the project’s first year through optimising the mix design and introducing a high-performance, less labour-intensive concrete. Research made new products possible This made new products possible, including pre-stressed concrete piles, a novel vaulted floor system, and SureFound: a BBA-accredited pre-cast concrete foundation system. These have enabled Taranto to enter new markets and attract new clients across the UK and Ireland, including a multi-million pound project in Wednesbury, Birmingham. Taranto has since begun another three-year KTP to develop another aspect of the business. This case study has been republished under the Open Government Licence v3.0
Environmental business set for major growth after developing an innovative system that captures gas that is normally wasted at source. Environmental systems business Transvac systems has developed a new way of capturing flare-off gas that could see its sales grow six-fold over the next five years. Every year, the equivalent of 30% of all natural gas consumed in the European Union is wasted through gas that flares off at major platforms. The global market for captured flare gas is expected to double by 2020 to $2 billion. Transvac’s high-performance ejector needs no maintenance and operates more efficiently and at lower cost than traditional, less reliable options. In June 2016, after a £233,000 feasibility study, the technology was performing three times better than its original target. Sales expected to grown six fold in 5 years A large European oil and gas operator was so impressed, it revised one of its North Sea platforms to use Transvac’s equipment. Transvac expects sales to increase from £4.5 million in 2016 to £15 million in the next 3 years, then to double again over another 2 years. This case study has been republished under the Open Government Licence v3.0
A 3D growing system devised by a UK business has been shown to increase crop productivity by 3-to-4 times and cut labour costs by 50%. Horticultural business Saturn Bioponics has developed a new system that can grow more crops in a defined space and grow them faster. The modular system lets growers cultivate ground crops in layers. As well as increasing crop density, this makes cultivating and harvesting cleaner and easier, reducing labour costs up to 50% and producing almost 100% saleable yield. With precise hydroponic management, growers can maximise water and nutrient efficiency within the system’s closed loop – potentially gaining 30% more crop cycles in each 12-month period. They can also manipulate colour, flavour and shelf life. Investment in the technology pays back in 1-to-4 years through increased profitability. Innovate UK is funding the development of unique in-line sensing technology to further enhance the capabilities. International growers interested in system One major UK pak choi grower has achieved consistent yield of 11.5kg per square metre using the Saturn Grower. Average pak choi yield is 3kg/m2. International growers are interested, including from China – the world’s largest market for such technology. This case study has been republished under the Open Government Licence v3.0