We are excited to announce the next cohort of academic entrepreneurs who have received our prestigious commercialisation award, the RSE Enterprise Fellowship. Five individuals, each with an innovative business proposition will now benefit from the support offered by our flagship programme; receiving a salary, expert business training, business support funding and a business mentor from the RSE for the 12-month duration of the award.

Meet our newest Enterprise Fellows:

John Hales
Funder: BBSRC
Host Institution: University College London
Company/project: Viral lasers for biological detection

John’s project is looking to commercialise a novel analytical technology which promises to open up new avenues for monitoring biology. Using viral laser technology, John aims to solve the analytical challenges faced by the biopharmaceutical industry. Using viral lasers is a departure from the mainstream analytical techniques, and is recognised as an advancement in detection and imaging. John’s vision is to establish viral laser technology as a once-in-a-generation analytical technology that will profoundly alter best practice in biological manufacturing, drug discovery and development, clinical diagnostics and environmental sensing.

James Young
Funder: BP fund held by the RSE
Host Institution: University of Edinburgh
Company/project: Energy3

Renewable energy sourced from the sun, wind, or tides is clean and secure. However, the energy that can be extracted from renewables and the demand for it varies both temporally and spatially. To allow a household to be fully reliant on renewables, or for grid operators to use a high proportion of renewable energy, storage is essential. Recognising that there is currently no existing energy storage technology on the market that is scalable, economical, durable or sustainable, and, that there is a significant opportunity for profit in energy storage, James aims to combat energy and heat waste by providing large scale storage solutions to energy utilities, thermal power plants and energy-intensive industries.

Alexander Birks
Funder: Scottish Enterprise
Host Institution: Heriot-Watt University
Company/project: SujiBFR

SujiBFR is a sports science company aiming to globalise the use of Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) training; a technique that combines the restriction of blood flow within limbs with lifting light weights. Recognising that if traditional heavy weight training is supplemented with BFR training, a 20% improvement in physical performance markers can be achieved, Alexander is looking to provide athletes with the Suji-System™; a product to standardise the process of BFR training which will enable athletes to improve performance faster, without requiring any prior knowledge.

Alice Smith
Funder: Scottish Enterprise
Host Institution: University of Edinburgh
Company/project: SpeakUnique

Speech synthesis technology is being incorporated into an increasingly large number of devices, from mobile phones and smart speakers for the home, to robots and avatars. The synthetic voices in these devices come pre-installed and offer little choice for the user in terms of age, gender and regional accent. SpeakUnique develops technology for the creation of personalised, synthesised voices, creating a bespoke product that is either a close replica of a person’s own voice, or the custom-build of a new voice according to the customers desired characteristics. The initial use for this technology is in providing individuals who cannot communicate naturally with a personalised synthetic voice.

Christopher Steer
Funder: STFC
Host Institution: University of Surrey 
Company/project: Railway inspection services using background radiation imaging

Christopher’s project aims to commercialise a novel imaging system that uses a natural source of background radiation to image railway infrastructure and assess its condition. The technique is inexpensive, presents no radiation hazard to the user and is highly penetrating. Working with one of Network Rail’s principal contractors and a specialist railway survey company, the project team have performed a proof-of-principle demonstration with a prototype imaging system, successfully passing the industry specified test. Christopher now hopes to commercialise his system and roll it out to the railway and wider engineering sectors.


The next call for RSE Enterprise Fellowships is open. Apply by Wednesday 28 April 2021, 17:00.