The UK rejoining the Horizon Europe research & innovation programme sparks a reaction in the 3D printing industry.

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On Thursday morning, there was an exciting announcement from the UK Government. They revealed that the UK has agreed to rejoin the Horizon Europe research programme, which is a significant development for the country’s research and innovation sector. Horizon Europe is considered the world’s largest initiative for research collaboration and is the EU’s main funding programme for research and innovation.

For years, the programme has provided substantial funding for 3D printing-centred research projects, with recent examples including a 6.7 million EUR investment in the MADE-3D project, which focuses on multi-material designs. Now that the UK has rejoined Horizon Europe, researchers and innovators in the country can apply for grants and bid to take part in projects, knowing that the UK will be a fully associated member until the programme’s completion in 2027.

Upon hearing this news, TCT reached out to various individuals in the UK research, innovation, and industrial sectors to gauge their reactions. Their responses were overwhelmingly positive and highlighted the critical role that EU-funded projects have played in the development of additive manufacturing (AM) technology over the past four decades.

EU-funded programmes have contributed to significant advances in AM machinery, software, materials, and applications, which have greatly benefited the UK’s high-value manufacturing sector. The uncertainty surrounding the UK’s long-term status in the Horizon programme has now come to an end, allowing the AM research and industrial community to plan with confidence for the future and participate in the governance of EU programmes.

The generous support provided by EU-funded programmes has enabled Europe to maintain its leadership in the additive manufacturing sector, and the UK’s strong participation in previous programmes has created valuable opportunities for businesses, research organizations, and technology institutions. These programmes have facilitated the development of novel innovations, knowledge transfer, and the training of future additive manufacturing engineers and scientists.

The news of the UK rejoining Horizon Europe has been wholeheartedly welcomed by the UK academic community, which looks forward to collaborating with European partners once again to maintain Europe’s leadership in the sector.

The decision for the UK to rejoin the Horizon Europe programme is significant for strengthening the UK’s ties with the EU in research and innovation. It demonstrates the UK’s commitment to advancing scientific knowledge and addresses challenges in collaboration with the wider scientific community. This move represents a positive step forward and will provide UK companies, universities, and research organizations with greater opportunities to access funding, lead projects, and increase their influence globally.

Renishaw, a UK-based company committed to research and development, expressed their enthusiasm for the UK’s rejoining of Horizon Europe. This decision provides a framework and potential funding for collaborative programmes with European partners, which is particularly beneficial for Renishaw’s Neuro Solutions division. They can now explore innovative therapy developments using their direct drug delivery technology to treat previously challenging brain conditions. The funding provided by Horizon Europe is especially useful for small biotech companies in generating early-stage evidence for safety and performance, which is necessary to progress novel therapeutics and drug delivery systems to later-stage trials and commercial application. Moreover, the collaborative nature of Horizon grants opens up opportunities to advance other pipeline projects with European partners.

Overall, the news of the UK rejoining Horizon Europe has brought much-needed certainty to the research and innovation community. In recent years, UK partners were unable to lead projects, and the rolling guarantees did not provide the necessary confidence and certainty for international partners, making collaboration difficult. However, this exciting development has now paved the way for greater collaboration and progress in the field of research and innovation.

In conclusion, the UK’s decision to rejoin the Horizon Europe research programme is a significant step forward for the country’s research and innovation sector. It opens up new opportunities for collaboration, funding, and global influence. The news has been met with enthusiasm and optimism by researchers, innovators, industrial leaders, and trade associations in the UK, who are excited about the potential for future advancements and the continued leadership of Europe in the additive manufacturing and research sectors.

Why We’re Excited to Lead Bids Again in the Additive Manufacturing Industry

Today’s announcement brings great news for us at PrintCity – we can now take the lead in bidding for projects once again. And let us tell you, we are eager to jump right into it. With our incredible facility equipped with state-of-the-art 3D printing equipment, we are determined to partner with researchers across Europe to tackle the most pressing challenges of our time.

The prospect of collaborating with leading researchers, designers, and engineers in Europe is truly exhilarating. We’re particularly focused on advancing the field of additive manufacturing, as well as exploring the exciting avenues of DFAM (Design for Additive Manufacturing) and materials development. The potential breakthroughs we could achieve in these areas are boundless.

However, it hasn’t always been smooth sailing for us when it comes to EU projects. During our time at Loughborough University, we had made the decision to step away from such endeavors due to their increasing bureaucratic nature. The problems were manifold – not only did we come across numerous EU engineering research projects of low quality, but there was also a pervasive sentiment that individuals applied for these projects when their proposals didn’t meet the funding standards of the EPSRC (Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council).

Despite the potentially controversial nature of this observation, we firmly believe it to be true. If it were up to us, instead of rejoining EU projects, we would redirect the funds allocated by the government to support Horizon projects into the EPSRC and Innovate UK. This would enable us to focus on projects of higher quality, while enjoying the benefits of easier management.

It’s worth mentioning that this blog post has sparked some interesting conversations on the TCT Additive Manufacturing Network. If you’d like to join in on the discussion, we encourage you to do so. Furthermore, if you’re interested in staying up-to-date with the latest developments in the industry, be sure to grab your free print subscription to TCT Magazine.

And finally, for those looking to showcase their work in the thriving world of 3D printing and additive manufacturing, we highly recommend exhibiting at the UK’s definitive and most influential event – TCT 3Sixty. It’s an unparalleled platform to network and gain exposure within the industry.

So, as we embark on this new chapter of leading bids once again, we invite you to join us in shaping the future of additive manufacturing across Europe. Let’s push boundaries, unlock innovation, and create a brighter tomorrow together.

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