Domin Wins A4I Grant to Optimise Hydraulics Manufacturing with Newcastle University
Domin, a leading innovator of hydraulic technology and systems, is thrilled to announce that they have won funding from the Analysis for Innovators (A4I) grant. The £100K grant will enable Domin to collaborate with Newcastle University on Project VERGE, with the aim of optimising the edge matching process and propelling the hydraulics industry into the modern era. The A4I grant is part of a larger £3M Innovate UK investment pool, fostering collaborations between leading UK research facilities and industries to address productivity and competitiveness challenges.
Domin is on a mission to positively disrupt the $250B hydraulics industry, which still relies on outdated 1950s technology and suffers from numerous inefficiencies. Harnessing cutting-edge technologies such as additive manufacturing, modern electronics, and digital control techniques, Domin has developed a servo valve platform that outperforms traditional counterparts in size, performance, and energy use. Moreover, by advocating for the adoption of their energy-efficient products, Domin aims to help the wider hydraulics industry reduce carbon emissions by 1 billion tonnes CO2e year by 2030.
To meet the surging demand for their innovative products, Domin plans to scale their servo valve production capacity by a factor of 10 over the next three years. The production process involves multiple stages, starting with metal additive manufacturing to 3D print core components such as valve manifolds and spools. However, due to geometric variations in the additive manufacturing outputs, Domin has developed a bespoke process called edge matching to ensure a perfect fit for each manifold and spool combination. Currently, this process involves iterative and time-consuming measurement and machining steps, posing a bottleneck to scaling up production.
Parvez Alam Kazi, the Head of Digital at Domin, expressed his excitement, stating, “Winning the Analysis for Innovators grant and collaborating with Newcastle University on Project VERGE is a great success for Domin. We are driven by a vision to revolutionize the hydraulics industry and contribute to a sustainable future. By optimising the edge matching process, we can unlock immense potential for scaling up production and bringing our innovative products to market more quickly and sustainably. efficiently.”
Under Project VERGE, Newcastle University will collaborate with Domin to optimise the edge-matching process. Leveraging their extensive manufacturing expertise and state-of-the-art equipment and facilities, the university will develop innovative measurement and manufacturing strategies. These advancements have the potential to unlock Domin’s production throughput in a streamlined yet cost-effective manner.
Prof. Brian Shaw, Director Design Unit, at Newcastle University said; “I am delighted that Newcastle University is partnering with Domin on Project VERGE to optimise the edge matching process in the hydraulics industry. This collaboration allows us to leverage our expertise in manufacturing and state-of-the-art facilities to develop innovative measurement and manufacturing strategies. It presents a unique opportunity for us to expand our knowledge in additive manufacturing and explore new avenues in the gearing industry. Together, we aim to drive significant advancements in the sector, contributing to the growth of the UK manufacturing industry.”
The outcomes of this project are expected to yield significant Gross Value Add (GVA) for the global hydraulics sector as well as the broader UK manufacturing industry. Additionally, this venture will play a pivotal role in Domin’s next stage of growth, as they plan to create over 70 new jobs spanning various manufacturing, technology, and digital roles within three years of project completion. For the University of Newcastle, this collaboration will expand their expertise and provide exposure to additive manufacturing, opening up new opportunities in the gearing industry.
The partnership between Domin and Newcastle University exemplifies the power of collaboration between academia and industry to drive innovation and address crucial challenges. The Innovate UK investment pool’s commitment to fostering such collaborations is a testament to its dedication to advancing the UK’s manufacturing sector and maintaining global competitiveness.