Aston University KTP rated ‘outstanding’ by panel


27 July 2011

A recent Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) involving Aston University has been awarded a grade A “outstanding” rating – the highest possible – by an independent panel of assessors.

Working with Pace Systems International, one of Europe’s leading manufacturers and suppliers of covert security and surveillance equipment, academics from Aston University’s School of Engineering and Applied Science developed a formal new product design process with the company.

The KTP project has introduced new technology, systems and more robust design processes to Pace Systems, supported by the understanding of solid modelling and analytical techniques. This has in-turn enabled the company to offer improved services to customers and enter new markets. Working on the two-year project were Professor Geoff Tansley and Dr Mark Prince of the Mechanical Engineering & Design Group.

KTP’s are designed to provide businesses with access to university expertise, including academic consultancy and qualified graduate placements, allowing businesses to develop new products, services and processes.

Les Leek, Managing Director at Pace Systems Ltd, said; “The skills and expertise at Aston University, and its advanced knowledge of Industrial Management and Design Research, have made an invaluable contribution to the design of new products,”

“The advice and guidance has led to improved product quality, increased “in service” reliability and facilitated the integration of electronic components into the finished products. Keeping the entire design process in-house has also improved the security and confidentiality of designs and customer applications.”

Alongside the benefits to the organisation, Aston University has also benefitted through greater awareness and knowledge of the management, operation, activities and research and design requirements of a high-value, short production run and product environment. This is reflected in the advice given to Engineering students regarding product development, career paths and placement opportunities.

In addition to the rare ‘A’ rating from the KTP assessors the success of the project was also recognised at the Knowledge Transfer Partnerships Awards last year, where the KTP Associate on the project, Syed Kazmi, received a ‘Business Leader of Tomorrow’ award.

Since August 2010, Aston University itself has been involved in 19 Knowledge Transfer Partnerships and 26 case awards (Cooperative Awards in Science & Engineering).

If you would like to find out how working with Aston University could transform your organisation please contact the Business Partnership Unit on 0121 204 4242 or