Midlands-based firm TextureJet has recently been awarded over £50k funding from Innovate UK as part of the sustainable innovation fund, to validate claims that its innovative surface finishing technology ‘STAT’ can reduce environmental impact for high-value manufacturing industries.
TextureJet believes it can remove the need for toxic chemicals and reduce associated waste streams by 70%, energy consumption by 60% and removal of >80% of non-value-added process steps compared to existing methods.
To quantify this in real terms, initial discussions with leading high-value manufacturers have identified the potential for removing over 60,000 tonnes of toxic liquid waste per year alongside hazardous chemicals from within the extended supply chain coupled with cutting energy usage of over 7,000 MWh/yr, which is equivalent to powering over 2000 households per year, thus demonstrating the real impact this technology can have on creating a more sustainable economy for UK manufacturing.
Surface finishing technology is in high demand, across a wide range of applications there is a need to modify the surface texture of components to provide the optimum function and performance. However, current surface texturing and finishing operations introduce contamination and significant health, safety and environmental concerns with both use and disposal of waste.
STAT’s patented technology has the potential to replace these legacy processes in their entirety. At the core of the technology is a unique, neutral solution electrochemical machining process that offers an innovative and clean solution to address both the economic and environmental constraints of current methods. It can roughen, polish, etch and structure surfaces, without inducing surface damage or requirement of masking. It has the benefits of simplicity aiding low-cost scalability, precision, and flexibility.
Jonathon Mitchell-Smith, Managing Director, TextureJet Ltd said: “Utilising our patented STAT technology, we’re confident that TextureJet can replace dirty, dangerous, and unsustainable legacy processes that have been prevalent in finishing processes for decades.”
The funding provided by Innovate UK will enable TextureJet to partner with high-value manufacturing OEM’s to validate the STAT technology and quantify the environmental, economic and sustainability impact it can have. This is a vital step towards equipping the UK manufacturing with a step-change increase in efficiency with a novel and sustainable solution.