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Knowledge Transfer and Innovation: How to make it effective, with examples based on Nano-Commercialization Professor Peter Dobson Academic Director, Begbroke.

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Presentation on theme: "Knowledge Transfer and Innovation: How to make it effective, with examples based on Nano-Commercialization Professor Peter Dobson Academic Director, Begbroke."— Presentation transcript:

1 Knowledge Transfer and Innovation: How to make it effective, with examples based on Nano-Commercialization Professor Peter Dobson Academic Director, Begbroke Science Park

2 What is Innovation? Invention happens and IP is created, Patents filed etc… The IP has to be converted into a business or a product: this is the innovative step. Managing innovation is a new and poorly understood topic. We introduced Enterprise Fellowships to do this in Oxford, and in 3 years out of 17: 7 started companies, and 7 are now full-time Technology Transfer specialists

3 The Innovation chain Research Inventive step Patents Spin-out company Company Expands (sales/marketing) Products purchased Partnership(s) Products BProducts A Innovation occurs here!

4 Transfer of Intellectual Property in Oxford University Government Charities Industry Assignment of intellectual property rights New sponsored research Research funding source Inside the UniversityOutside the University Research Services 40 Staff 85% Graduates 33% Post grad degrees IP Due Diligence Team Isis Innovation 56 staff 75% Graduates 50% Science doctorates Spin-outs Licences Consulting

5 Innovation at Oxford Innovation is what happens between invention and revenue generation Invention by academic Spin-off Company Licence Deal Device or materials supplier End-user Flotation or acquisition Departments OxSec and Venturefest raise awareness Isis Innovation Begbroke Science Park: space and industrial links Continuing Professional Development KTN and KTP activities REVENUEINVENTION Said Business School, MBA etc…. Enterprise Fellowships were created to help start the innovation activity.

6 How do we encourage innovation? Enterprise Fellowships (Begbroke) Oxford Science Enterprise Centre (Business school) Courses introduced in the undergraduate curriculum Creating a new ethos for invention and innovation

7 Enterprise Fellowships Industrial Research Fellow exploit recent research by post-grads/docs Business Development Fellow assist Isis Innovation team with the above, with help from Business School Knowledge Transfer Fellow work with Continuing Professional Development to develop new modular courses in topical key areas. All of these were given training and mentoring by a team of experts

8 2003/4/5 Enterprise Fellows examples of the industrial fellow activities Terry Sachlos: Formed TEOX Ltd, Synthetic bone structures Tiancun Xiao: Formed Oxford Catalysts plc, novel low Temp catalysts John Topping: Formed MFN, thermal control layers Cathy Hua Ye: Artificial tissue plans still in progress Stephen Bell: Artificial flavours & fragrances, license deal Jamie Patterson: Novel imaging techniques, formed Eykona Ltd Tim Rayment: several patents then joined a company Wolfgang Denzer: formed Oxford Medical Diagnostics Ltd Chris Padbury: filed patents, now works for TTP,Cambridge John Laczik: formed a diffractive optical element company.

9 2003/4/5 Enterprise Fellows Terry Pollard: assisted several industrial fellows, moved to Oxford Catalysts now back with Isis Innovation. Liz Kirby:based in Isis and developed courses on IP, now at Reading KT office Andrea Mica: worked with Isis now with IP Group plc Giles Dudley: Business development with Isis, now at Edinburgh Univ Innovation Knowledge Transfer: Stuart Wilkinson: NanoBasics and NanoCert courses, now at Isis Innovation Jenny Knapp: ClimateBasics and other courses, now at Bristol Univ tech transfer. Simon Nee: GRID-service course, now in banking.. Business development

10 During the Innovation Process: Can we shrink the timescale? Form partnerships with other companies Use toll manufacturing Use other sales/marketing This is a complex subject but one key to this is to establish the market needs and aim for early revenue generation

11 Science Parks in Europe Some are pure real estate with provision of space and minimal management Some are embedded in University buildings A trend is for them to be incorporated within a University campus setting but fully independent, with help provided to companies regarding facilities and guidance. At Oxford (Begbroke) the latter is our model and we are learning more about the optimal solution

12 Begbroke Science Park Purchased 1998 with 7500m 2 lab/office space. Initially mainly Materials Dept. and spin-off activities Has a incubator for spin-off and spin-in Companies Investment ~£35M (2005) from University, JIF, SRIF, Industry sources Prof Peter Dobson Academic Director (2002) 6 miles north of Oxford city centre Initial Focus on Advanced Materials, Nanotechnology and Environmental Technology Another 9000m 2 of laboratory and office space will be built in the next 3 years

13 Begbroke aerial 2008 Centre for Innovation and Enterprise Advanced Processing Laboratory Institute of Advanced Technology

14 Centre for Innovation and Enterprise at Begbroke Mixed types of space Flexible terms for rental Close proximity to world- class Materials facilities Further information:

15 Institute of Advanced Technology Business- focused nanotechnology activities New energy technologies, hydrogen/solar Sustainable materials technologies, aero/auto Environmental management and Water research All are University inter- departmental Focus to be solution driven problem- solving utilising interdisciplinary teams

16 Can we embed industry and business personnel in University? There is a need to define and match expectations. The possible benefits for academia are obvious, but are there benefits for business? Yes, on a collective basis, but remember that managers are more focussed on their units performance and absence of valuable people is not attractive. Very difficult for SMEs How can we compensate for this? What happens next? Some very successful examples of visiting professors giving very useful course enrichment and experience to students.

17 Embedding University personnel in Business and Industry Gives new insight for academics Do they contribute or are they a drain on resources? SMEs are likely to be attracted to the idea What happens after the attachment? My personal experience was life-changing, I left Imperial College and joined Philips. Others have gone back to academia and undertaken more applied research and engaged in teaching with more of a business focus

18 Outline of Nano-Commercialization Introduction to nanoscience and nanotechnology Oxonica, a company based on making and designing nanoparticles: its history and the lessons that were learned Innovation and the possible routes to commercialisation. Regulation and safety

19 Nano-science vs Nano-technology New awareness of chemistry, physics and biology especially at the molecular level Optimism of what is possible Concerns for the impact of scientific research Improvements to existing products in terms of performance or value New functionality paradigms Improve our control and understanding of processes and life.

20 Quantum Corrals: works of art but are they useful? They enable us to visualise where electrons are in 2-D structures

21 Nanotechnology: Fact or Fiction Glass that cleans itself Nanorobots on the loose Less polluting fuels Fact Fiction Safe SunscreensFact

22 Matching expectations of Scientists and Technologists Scientists view things on a short time scale! Their measure of success is simple: publications in top peer-reviewed journals Technologists have a longer, more tortuous time scale. Measure of success is to manufacture and sell into a market

23 How Oxonica started: the original vision Research on manufacture of luminescent nanoparticles in the late 1990s at Oxford led to belief that we could offer low voltage nanoparticle phosphor materials to the field emission display industry. This idea was flawed, because industry wanted a complete solution and not a small part of the solution. Note a field emission display needs electron emitters, the phosphors, a screen, fully integrated into a product. Attention was then given to nanoparticle sunscreens and diesel fuel catalyst additives. The former had strong internal University IP, the latter did not.

24 Oxonica plc University of Oxford spin-out formed 1999 after 7 years background research Focus on Energy, Environment and Healthcare Solution Provider ethos £2.3M from Angels and DTI awards £8.2M from Institutional Funding Revenue generating from 2002 Tailoring nanoparticles for customer applications, building revenues based on IP generation Floated on AIM 20-7-05, market cap. £35M Took over Nanoplex (US) 20-12-05 Deal with a Turkish oil company broke down in 2007, reduced valuation. ~40 Employees, strong commercial and industrial experience. Current shares trade at ~20p (September 2008)

25 Early Oxonica products Grown by colloidal solution growth Size-tuning of optical properties Quantum dots are still looking for a high value application!

26 Nanophosphor particles Y 2 O 3 :Eu Mild anneal High temperature heating Detail of surface

27 Field Emission Display This technology did not take off largely because the emitters were not reliable. It taught us a lesson: Think about providing the complete solution.

28 The early lessons Discard the idea of pushing clever nanotechnology Try to provide a complete solution to a market need Quantum dots were fashionable but where is the market? (this is true today!)

29 Phase 0 Idea Phase 1 Feasibility Phase 2 Proof of Concept Phase 3 Scale-up Phase 4 Pre- commercial Phase 5 Commercial Sunscreens Fuel Emission Catalyst Early Revenue Generators Printing Inks TCOs for devices Biodiagnostics Oxonica product pipeline New product concepts for Healthcare & Environment Biodiagnostics is risky unless you have quantified the market need and supply chain TCOs have become a very important market need Transparent conducting oxides

30 Cleaning up diesel exhaust with Envirox Examples of diesel exhaust particles These are regular carbon particles bound together by thick unburnt hydrocarbons. Based on a Cerium Oxide nanoparticles dispersed in hydrocarbon solvent Fuel-borne additive Nanoscale particle size ~20-40nm Extremely high catalyst surface area Direct addition to diesel fuel: Fuel-borne catalysis Approx. 5ppm Cerium Oxide Low application rate – only 1 litre of Envirox to 4000 litres of fuel No engine modifications required

31 Hong Kong Field Trial – Cummins Engine 1.05 1.15 1.25 1.35 1.45 1.55 Apr- 02 May- 02 Jun- 02 Jul- 02 Aug- 02 Sep- 02 Oct- 02 Nov- 02 Dec- 02 Jan- 03 Feb- 03 Mar- 03 Apr- 03 Fuel Consumption km/litre Additised GroupUnadditised Group Pre-trial periodTrial periodPost-trial period Envirox: Fuel Economy Performance

32 Has Envirox worked? Yes, it has proved its value in conventional diesel engines (up to 14% improvement in fuel consumption and reduced particle emissions) and turbodiesels. But, it is not effective in high sulfur content fuels (surely sulphur should be eliminated before point-of-sale?) It may yet find other applications as an in situ combustion catalyst

33 Optisol TM ® The driver for this product was the evidence that most transparent sunscreens in the 1990s posed a health hazard. Nanoparticles of titania are used so that they appear transparent to visible light on the skin, but block UV The titania is doped in a special way so that it does not behave as a photocatalyst (that would cause skin damage) The new titania particles prevent the formation of free radicals and hence the formulation lasts much longer in sunlight and protects the skin.

34 Other thoughts to improve sunscreens (1999-2000) Could we convert uv light to visible? ZnO could be used as a convertor Was the idea of using TiO 2 doped to make it p-type a general solution? Could this be used to make other uv protective layers in the paint and plastics industries?

35 Titania sunscreen nanoparticles 150nm 3+ Mn 2+ Surface Mn 2+ free radical scavenging Mn 2+ Mn 3+ + e - Mn 2+ + OH Mn 3+ + OH - Mn 3+ + O 2 Mn 2+ + O 2 Rutile P4 2 /mnm Titanium Oxide lattice k E Conduction Band Valence Band Mn 3+ level Schematic band structure UV light h+h+ e-e-

36 New doped titania products Enhanced performance for many other cosmetic foundation formulations Possible use as a uv protective agent in coatings and polymers: Solacor ®

37 Doped Titania for UV protection Sunscreen/cosmeticsPaints/coatingsPolymer additive Establish materials supplier, probably different for each application Formulate and sell direct Partner with established company Saves investment, makes use of sales/distribution, but could lose value Retains control and value, but requires investment in sales/distribution

38 Oxonica, new lessons! Make use of core technology to provide solutions Provide solutions where there is a market need Early revenue generation is essential Balance the team, remember sales/marketing, but keep a strong technical base Collaborate with universities Form strategic alliances to speed time-to-market and reduce costs

39 Overall Conclusions How can we speed up Innovation? Never push technology but look for market-led solution provision Develop a balanced team, especially help with sales/marketing, but do not neglect the technical team Try to shorten the time from invention to revenue generation by partnerships Treat investors money as your own and respect their risk and confidence

40 So how do we decide on the optimum route? License deal? This has advantages for a swift form of revenue generation, but it needs careful choice and decisions about exclusivity Spin-off company? Probably the best option for very novel and disruptive technology. Form partnerships? Need to have good reasons: access to markets could be quicker; access to scaled-up manufacturing…..

41 Regulation and Safety There are concerns about safety of nanoparticles the new asbestos? There are responsible programmes to investigate these issues, eg: NANOSAFE2, DEFRA, ….. Funding is probably inadequate, and SMEs have substantial burden if they mount a programme. (Oxonica has done a lot of testing and been involved in most of the safety groups) There are important implications for founders of companies using nano, and in any case, a medical application will have to comply with FDA regulations (used as the gold standard by many countries)

42 Part-time Online Postgraduate Certificate in Nanotechnology comprising three modules: The Wider Context of Nanotechnology for professionals from any background who wish to understand the issues surrounding the uses of nanotechnology The Fundamental Science of Nanotechnology a more in-depth exploration of the science of nanotechnology Fundamental Nanoscale Characterization providing a detailed survey of characterization techniques for nanoscale materials For further details contact:

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