Sectors - Civil

Part Two of Innovation Accelerator Launched

On Monday, 17 August, HS2 Ltd launched the second tranche of recruitment to its Innovation Accelerator programme. This follows on from the overwhelming response to its first call out to tech start-ups and innovative SMEs earlier in the year.

The company behind the UK’s largest-ever transport infrastructure project is looking to recruit five more smaller firms with bright ideas in the following:

  1. What is the best way people can spend time at stations before their train leave?
  2. How to optimise digital solutions for building HS2 to make every second count

The five entrants that win will join the first cohort, chosen from 109 applications from the first recruitment programme, and will work on the challenges of:

  • Productivity
  • Environment
  • The circular economy

Ideas include 3D concrete printing and using automated drone technology to assist with the planting of seven million trees along the HS2 route.

As of Monday, an online application portal will be open for a month, after which HS2 Ltd will pick five of the companies who entered to take forward on the Innovation Accelerator.

The Accelerator will provide both commercial and technical support, as well as a rent-free Birmingham-based workspace to develop their proposal.

After six months, solutions will be showcased and pitched to industry investors and HS2’s supply chain, which is made up of the thousands of suppliers.

HS2 Ltd Head of Innovation Howard Mitchell said: “We received over 100 applications from innovative tech start-ups and SMEs to join Cohort One of HS2’s Innovation Accelerator programme, which beat all our expectations.

“The level of interest underlines the opportunity that HS2 offers to some of the most innovative and dynamic young firms in the country.

“I’m therefore extremely positive about the prospects for Cohort Two, and new thinking on how we build Britain’s new high-speed rail network and enable passengers to make best use of their time in our stations. “

The Portal closes to applications on 18 September. HS2 will announce the successful enterprises in the autumn.

HS2 Ltd is a partner of the UK Infrastructure Show (UKIS), the UK’s leading infrastructure and supply chain event, which explores the latest developments across the sector. This year, UKIS is going online and will be delivered as a live, online interactive event on Wednesday 9 September 2020.

More information on what you can expect from this new digital event experience can be found by visiting the UKIS website here.

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