A £16m programme to boost SME defence innovation has been launched by the government.
With the innovation of SMEs, the resources of big suppliers and initial funding from government, the Defence Technology Exploitation Programme (DTEP) is designed to bring the key components together to allow pioneering projects to flourish.
The aim is to keep the UK at the forefront of defence technology, improving the capabilities available to our Armed Forces, the competitiveness of UK industry and growing potential exports benefits.
Individual grants of up to 50% of a project’s value – to a maximum of £500,000 per grant - will be available through DTEP for collaborative projects between SMEs and larger suppliers, supporting the integration of novel technologies, materials and processes into MOD’s supply chains.
DTEP will be open for proposals year-round, with cycles closing at 3-month intervals for assessment of submissions.
Defence Minister Jeremy Quin said: “Innovation within defence is crucial to maintaining competitive advantage for our Armed Forces.
“The Defence Technology Exploitation Programme is a positive step in how we support SMEs and larger suppliers to work together to improve the resilience and competitiveness of the MOD’s supply chain.
“Today’s launch builds upon the successful BEIS-funded National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP) and a pilot of DTEP conducted with Invest Northern Ireland (Invest NI). An example of work supported by this pilot is CCP Gransden, based near Ballygowan, collaborating with Thales and Ulster University on a project to replace the Starstreak surface-to-air missile system’s metallic canister with a composite version – reducing reliance on global supply chains for the over 50 components currently needed.”