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Innovation is vital in today's knowledge driven economy and is often the factor that separates successful businesses from those that fail. Ideas influence business in different ways depending on their significance. These ideas can range from incremental improvements on known techniques to step-change technologies that may bring disruptive change.

TWI has a rich and well-publicised history of innovation and invention dating back to the time of the British Welding Research Association in the 1940s. Memorable highlights from the past include the CTOD method for measuring fracture toughness, the Wells wide plate test, types of high powered CO2 laser, and many innovations in the use of laser, friction, arc, adhesive bonding and other technologies related to welding, joining, coating and testing.

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Innovation Timeline

Current inventions being actively exploited at TWI include Friction Stir Welding (FSW – a revolutionary solid state joining technique), Surfi-Sculpt (a power beam material modification technique), Vitolane (a unique platform technology for the creation of bespoke materials) and novel methods for welding using reduced pressure High Power Electron Beam (HPEB) technologies.

TWI’s track record in the protection and successful exploitation of its own ideas has enabled the creation of core competencies within TWI. These can be leveraged for the benefit of Members and include competencies such as:

  • Mature and sophisticated handling of commercially sensitive confidential information

  • Management of intellectual property rights

  • Safeguarding Members intellectual property assets

  • Technology licensing and exploitation

TWI supports the creation and development of ideas using a variety of different mechanisms and uses a stage gate process to manage exploitation effectively. TWI is actively exploiting 5 distinct inventions and has over 180 granted patents in its portfolio. TWI has granted over 250 licences world-wide. Income from licensing exceeded £2.3m in 2012.

Read more about intellectual property licensing.

For more information, please contact us.