It’s tough to get cybersecurity right - every day there’s a new threat to consider and another costly breach in the news. Thankfully, one Edinburgh crusader has worked to bring an incredible new kind of cybersecurity to the front. Zonefox helps businesses look at data protection and information security in a different way, making life easier for everyone. Today ZoneFox is deployed by global brands to secure valuable data against threats, to maximize their existing security and help them meet increasingly complex compliance demands.
Insignia Technologies have developed a range of colour-changing plastics and inks which are used to create smart labels for the food industry. Their labels have many applications including highlighting when products have been temperature abused in the supply chain and showing when food is past its best or at the end of its shelf life. The benefits of using these labels include enhancing food safety and quality, extending or optimising the shelf life and reducing food waste.
Edinburgh Molecular Imaging
Founded in 2014, Edinburgh Molecular Imaging is helping doctors and clinicians see the invisible with their incredible molecular imaging technology. Based on Fluorescent Imaging, the technology has the potential to detect disease in real-time during interventional procedures including surgery, providing more accurate treatment while sparing healthy tissue. This is done by literally illuminating diseased tissue with fluorescent dye, providing doctors with a clear view of the extent of the disease.
Caring for people with memory loss illnesses like Alzheimer’s or Dementia can be an incredibly difficult thing to deal with – just ask the three young founders behind the revolutionary MindMate app. Having had first-hand experience with family members suffering from Alzheimer's, they developed the MindMate app to help people with early-stage memory loss. The app includes list-making applications, interactive games to sharpen memory and reactions, a ‘My Story’ timeline tool and customisable reminders.
Quickblock are literally building a better tomorrow with their revolutionary new product, which will fundamentally change how we construct things. Made from 100% recycled plastic, one of their 1.4kg blocks is made up of 30 cola bottles and they come flat-packed for easy transportation. Quikblock’s lightweight, versatile building block has unlimited potential, and can be used to put together everything from field hospitals in war zones to animal shelters as well as aiding in disaster relief and flood prevention.
We’ve all been stuck in the situation where we have spotty Wi-Fi and can’t get connected, but thankfully, that is about to change forever! Imagine a world where every light could connect you to the internet. That might sound like science fiction, but that’s what LiFi does –a revolutionary wireless technology developed by The University of Edinburgh spin-out pureLiFi. LiFi is a 5G technology that can achieve 1,000 times the data density of Wi-Fi and can be used in areas where you can’t use radio frequency technologies, such as hospitals and airplanes.
Sunamp is changing how we heat our homes by harnessing the power of thermal energy. Compact, energy-efficient and sustainable, Sunamp’s UniQ heat batteries cut fuel costs and carbon emissions by storing available energy from renewable and non-renewable sources as heat and releasing it on demand. They also have multiple types of their Thermal Battery, all designed to deal with varying levels of demand.
Dundee Uni: Drug Detection Unit
Malaria continues to threaten the lives of almost half of the world’s population, but thanks to an amazing discovery from a team at the University of Dundee’s Drug Discovery Unit, this may be about to change. Their discovery has the potential to treat malaria patients in just a single dose and help reduce the transmission of the parasite. This discovery holds the promise to not only treat but also protect vulnerable populations from malaria.
The £600m fisheries industry is now being transformed by the folks at MiAlgae – a student launched start-up from the University of Edinburgh who are the next generation of agriculture. They’re revolutionising the industry by creating a new kind of livestock feed that is high in proteins and omegas by using wastewater from the whisky industry. The company also strives to be a zero waste producer, meaning it’s also great for the environment.
You may not immediately recognise Outplay Entertainment, but you'll definitely be familiar with their most well-known product – Angry Birds. This Dundee-based mobile games developer have amassed well over 100 million downloads across their entire range of games. Today the company is the UK’s largest independent mobile games developer and was also named as one of the nation’s most influential and dynamic small/medium-sized enterprises.
Did you know that only 10% of what comes out of a whisky distillery is actually whisky. Celtic Renewables are an innovative company who are using the by-products that make up the other 90% to create sustainable biofuels that can one day replace fossil fuels. Using one of Scotland’s most iconic products, the team at Celtic Renewables have revived and revitalised a fermentation process that dates back to the 1950s to create the next generation of biofuels.
Envirocache is an amazing app that was created by two 16-year old girls from Wick in the north of Scotland. Together, they found an innovative way to solve the problem of how to get young people obsessed with technology to experience the great outdoors. Envirocache encourages children to get outdoors, get active, and get educated about the world they live in. The app works by having people upload walking routes that are tagged with interesting plants, wildlife or landmarks that others can then follow and find.
Edinburgh-based swimming instructor, Michael Harkins, has over 10 years’ experience and has successfully taught more than 1000 kids how to swim, but now he is taking it to another level. He has developed the Turtle Pack, a revolutionary new swimming aid, designed to make learning to swim faster, easier, more effective and more fun. The multifunctional Turtle Pack completely changes how children interact with the water, promoting everything from water safety to a healthy lifestyle.
The team at Carbogenics have created an amazing carbon-based additive named CreChar, this helps boost the production of biogas from organic waste. CreChar is made from difficult-to-recycle paper wastes like disposable coffee cups, drink cartons, or low-grade recycled cardboard and paper through a thermal process called pyrolysis. This revolutionary process diverts waste from landfill and incineration, and improves the efficiency of renewable energy production from organic waste.
As the need to develop better renewable energy sources becomes more important, Edinburgh-based Nova Innovation are leading the rest of the world in the tidal energy sector. They design, build and operate tidal energy devices, harnessing the power of the tides to generate clean and affordable energy. Their Shetland Tidal Array in the north of Scotland, which was installed in 2016, was the first of its kind in the entire world and is consistently producing power into the country’s electricity grid.
Welbot is an innovative, intelligent desktop app that's been designed to help look after your physical and mental wellbeing. With the average person spending almost a third of their waking life at work, Welbot was designed to improve personal day-to-day workplace wellbeing including posture, flexibility, mood, nutrition and productivity. As well as improving the health of individuals, the knock-on effect means it can also increase performance and productivity and address the issues associated with long term absenteeism.
A revolutionary partnership between CENSIS and Beringar is helping change how hospitals manage their space using visual light sensors and Bluetooth technology. Their smart sensors can make buildings ‘talk’, with their system providing real-time measurements of usage patterns in a room. This includes everything from occupancy to temperature and even air quality, meaning they can provide insight for companies like the NHS, where it’s already being used to manage their buildings more efficiently and reduce spending.
The impressively innovative SmartCough team - made up of university students, a charity and a private sector business - have developed a prototype of a smartphone based cough detector. This device enables continuous cough monitoring in noisy environments with impressively low energy consumption. The system relies on advanced audio processing and machine learning algorithms and could have massive implications for health services around the globe, helping to reduce everything from wait times to costs.
Researchers at QuantIC have developed ‘Wee-g’ – a new technology that can show changes in gravity. Wee-g is a compact, ultra-stable Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) based accelerometer which has sufficient sensitivity to measure the Earth’s tides and elastic deformations of our planet. The device is smaller and more stable than current technology and can be used to see underground. This has a huge range of applications including aiding early warning systems for volcanic eruptions and detecting potential sinkholes.
The prospect of robots being able to identify and recognise humans has taken a step forward with the development of a new approach to thermal imaging. Censis brought together teams from Thales UK in Glasgow, and the University of the West of Scotland to completely change the way that thermal imaging works. Together they worked on an incredible piece of technology called AALART – a state-of-the-art artificial intelligence that can automatically detect and identify humans and different types of cars.
Human life is precious, and snap40’s mission is to protect it globally through the application of artificial intelligence to real-time data. Through its all-in-one, wireless wearable device, snap40 continuously monitors the human body, offering a complete picture of human health and enabling the detection of patient deterioration and illnesses earlier for preventive healthcare. The company’s team of Ph.Ds, research scientists, healthcare executives and engineers are united by a common goal to save lives and improve healthcare delivery.
Sensor-Works offer an innovative approach to providing new solutions and enhancements to existing products and techniques – moving businesses from the traditional to the transformational. Their range of self-powered, intelligent wireless sensors are completely changing how factories and plants manage their machines. Using the data provided by Sensor-Works’ pioneering technology, they can help prevent unexpected equipment breakdowns and more effectively schedule their maintenance activities. This not only improves the efficiency of operations, but also reduces costs and increases return on assets.
UNESCO Scottish 10
An incredible project will see some of the world’s most famous heritage sites come to life in a whole new way. The Scottish Ten is an innovative project that's designed to create exceptionally accurate digital models of 10 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The 10 heritage sites will be made up of five from within Scotland itself, with the other five being international sites. Using cutting-edge laser scanning, this project allows us to better manage, conserve, interpret and research important historical sites for future generations.
FreeAgent are an innovative tech company founded in Scotland who provide cloud-based accounting software targeted and freelancers and small businesses. As they put it themselves, taking care of big problems for small businesses is what gets them up in the mornings. What started out as a way for the founders to solve their own bookkeeping woes, has turned into an accounting solution that helps over 70,000 freelancers, small businesses and their accountants take care of their finances today.
Did you know that a remote location on the northern tip of Scotland is soon to be the home of Europe’s first small satellite spaceport? Not only that, Scotland also builds more small satellites than any other country in Europe. At the forefront of this are Scottish companies like Clyde Space, who are a world-leading innovator and producer of small satellite systems. Founded in 2005, they have produced and shipped more cube-satellites than anyone else in the world and have more than 100 years of combined industry experience.
Carbon Dynamic are fundamentally changing the construction industry! Their revolutionary off-site system means that they can fully construct and test highly insulated, pre-fabricated buildings in their factory. These can then be transported direct to construction sites where, on average, they can be assembled in a matter of hours – making it a stress-free process for everyone involved. Their revolutionary designs are also incredibly energy efficient, using on average less than 7% of the energy of an average home.
Hydrason are completely revolutionising the concept of sonar with their incredible new intelligent wideband sonar technology. Their product is an innovative system that provides a huge range of capabilities for underwater surveying. Not only does their system completely outstrip conventional sonar, it also provides fast, accurate information. The possibilities of this technology mean it can aid everything from the oil and gas sector, to renewable energies and even the detection of unexploded devices.
Imagine a world where you could take all that nasty waste from shellfish and turn it into something that’s useful - well, Cuantec are making this happen! This innovative team are simultaneously opening up the potential of the sea and helping eradicate the more than 8.8 million tonnes of plastic that end up in our oceans each year. Their revolutionary process transforms the waste from the fisheries industry into a flexible anti-microbial and compostable type of food packaging that will actually extend the shelf life of fresh food!
Attis Fitness is the next step in activity tracking technology. Developed at Stirling University’s Innovation Park, they specialise in producing wearable motion capture clothing. Where regular activity trackers can monitor heart rate and GPS, Attis take it to a whole other level. They monitor everything from stride length, cadence, bounce, pelvic rotation/drop, meaning anyone can achieve optimal performance. With an easy set-up that’s designed to work in all conditions Attis bridge the gap between elite athletes and everyone else.
When you talk about innovation in Scotland, there aren’t many bigger stories to tell than the meteoric rise of Skyscanner. Founded in 2004, this global travel search site has grown to become one of the leading names in the industry – not bad for a company founded because of a frustration over trying to book a ski holiday! The winner of countless international awards, today Skyscanner is available in more than 30 different languages and is used by a staggering 80 million people every month.