UK government to invest £340m in smart energy and AI tech


According to The Energyst, the UK government has allocated £246m to smart energy technologies, such as batteries and £93m is allocated to artificial intelligence (AI) development.

The funds will come from the country’s £1bn Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which aims to “identify and develop UK industries that are fit for the future, driving progress in technologies where the UK can build on our existing areas of industrial and research strength,” says Research Councils UK.

The government will leverage artificial intelligence technology to develop energy applications.

Says BEIS secretary of state Greg Clark, “Through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund we will provide an enormous boost to our world-class research and development sector, to help turn brilliant British innovations into new businesses and good jobs.”

The secretary of state has previously called upon the energy and automotive sectors to collaborate on battery technology, which he believes “could be key to accommodating a power system increasingly reliant on intermittent renewable generators.”

[quote] The Energyst adds that small companies are also being urged to apply for smart energy technology grants.

Furthermore,under Innovate UK’s investment accelerator pilot, some £4.25m in public/private funding is being made available for early stage projects in smart infrastructure, energy, urban living and connected transport – for which young entrepreneurs can submit their applications. The deadline is 28 June.

Cybersecurity UK

According to findings of the latest PwC B2B Energy Survey, 65% of UK businesses are significantly concerned about the issue of cyber-risks.

The survey found that a further 51% of UK businesses are worried that their client data isn’t handled with enough security by their energy supplier.

PwC’s survey included feedback from more than 500 UK businesses, who noted that should their energy supplier fall victim to a cyber-breach, 57% of businesses and almost 70% of industrials would switch their supplier.

Steve Jennings, power and utilities leader at PwC, was reported saying, “Against a backdrop of technology innovation, privacy regulation, and the growing adoption of the Internet of Things, it’s perhaps not surprising that UK businesses are concerned about cyber-threats.” Read more…

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