The TATA Steel Award for Outstanding Impact in Commerce and Industry

WINNER

Prof. Kenneth Morgan, Prof. Oubay Hassan and Dr Ben Evans, College of Engineering    

“Improved Aerodynamic Design Process for the Aerospace Industry through the Application of Unstructured Mesh Technology”

Kenneth Morgan

A computational aerodynamics design system (FLITE) developed at Swansea has been of significant economic benefit to the aerospace industry.  When introduced, the unstructured mesh FLITE approach was considered by BAE Systems to provide a step change in their design cycle. Using FLITE, highly complex modern aerospace configurations could be analysed in short timescales. 

The FLITE system has since been utilised by a number of international organisations.  Its use in design for the BLOODHOUND project has also contributed to significant public engagement in science and engineering, including a large-scale education programme with which over 5,000 schools have fully engaged. 

FLITE played a critical role in the success of the THRUST SSC project, which set the first supersonic World Land Speed Record in 1997.  In 2007, FLITE was used to demonstrate the practical feasibility of designing a vehicle capable of safely taking this record to 1000 mph. This initial work enabled the public launch of the BLOODHOUND supersonic car project by Lord Drayson in 2008.     

Judges’ comments:

“The research has had - and is still having - a profound impact on industry. In addition, it has shown to have a profound impact on society. The impact is clearly international and world leading aeronautical firms have employed this research to drive their success.”

“This one should win the prize for the best supporting graphic - it's great!”

RUNNERS UP

David Benton. College of Human and Health Sciences    

“The development of novel food items to facilitate mood and cognition”

David Benton

David Benton develops novel foods that benefit mood and cognition. Over twenty years, funding has been received on twenty-five occasions from businesses throughout the world. A patent has been established by one company and another has introduced a novel type of product. Funding from Danone, France, produced the first report of cognition being facilitated by a product that slowly releases glucose. 

The product was subsequently sold to Kraft in the USA and now retails world-wide under the trade name Belvita: it is said to have “revolutionised the biscuit category” by establishing a new sector of the market

Impact is also illustrated by the invitations to give evidence to policy makers, requests to evaluate the problems for industry, and the hundreds of articles generated that have drawn attention to Swansea University.

The principles developed have also had a wide impact as they provide underpinning ideas.  For example Dutch Lady Milk is the market leader for follow-on formulae in Malaysia: in their advertisements they quote only Swansea research.

 

Judges’ comments:

 “The research has had a clear impact in industry and society. The number of beneficiaries is huge and clearly international. The huge investment over the years suggests that this research is unique to Swansea University and is clearly helping to raise its profile”.

 

LEAD Wales. Department of Research and Innovation   

“Exemplifying SME Leadership Development”

LEAD Wales

The LEAD Wales is a professional Leadership Development Programme that aims to enhance the growth capacity of SMEs in Wales. The programme’s success is evidenced in its latest report, produced three years into the five year project. The key research findings are delegates reporting a net increase of £20.5 million in their turnover, an average increase of £77,000 amongst the 266 delegates who reported. 97% of delegates reported that the programme has had a significant personal impact on them and the way in which they work. Over 1,600 new jobs have been created for Wales by LEAD Wales participants.

Judges’ comments:

“The research has shown a clear impact in industry and society by generating an important number of jobs although the project is still not finished and clear and more significant figures are expected by the end of the project. The adoption of models created in this research indicates that it has helped to raise the profile of the University”.