How your business can benefit from working with Scotland’s universities

Heather Alexander is Marketing Manager at Interface, the knowledge connection for organisations to universities and research institutions for the support they need to create and develop new products, services and processes. This free and impartial service has been designed to save businesses time and money in finding an academic partner and it has already helped hundreds of businesses to increase their profits, maximise their exports and become more competitive in the marketplace.


We officially launched our Specialist Facilities platform and accompanying promotional video last week – I hope you’ve managed to take a look!

So, what’s so special about Specialist Facilities?

Scotland has a huge resource of world class and highly specialised facilities throughout each one of its universities and research institutions – this in its self is pretty special but when you combine it with the academic and technical knowledge they become a very valuable solution for commercial business projects.

We have some great examples of companies that have used Specialist Facilities as part of their R&D activities:

Scotlab used computer-aided design (CAD) and 3D printing at the University of Strathclyde to create their Altium-i10, a portable device that would simulate the effects of high altitudes to be used by athletes to improve performance. They later also worked with the University of the West of Scotland to evaluate the performance capability and functionality of the device through field tests.

The natural dog treat company PAWsitively Natural conducted nutritional and shelf life analysis of their four flavours of dog treats with Glasgow Caledonian University which helped in the process of bringing the products to market.

And Kanthal, a manufacturer of silicon carbide heating element rods worked with Edinburgh Napier University to test the bending strength of their carbon rods to understand their robustness and versatility within the manufacturing process.

As you can see from these case studies there is a varied range of facilities and expertise that companies can access and it has been a real eye opener for me to identify the vast range of facilities that are available – so much in fact that we simply couldn’t include everything on our website and in the video. The video has been a great way to bring to life some of these facilities, showing how they can be used and taking the viewer into the environment.

So, if you’re looking for a piece of equipment or facility that you don’t see in our video or on our website don’t worry, from our partner base of Scotland’s 23 universities and research institutions we will be able to locate it and match you into the right expertise for your project.

Contact Interface to find your Specialist Facilities match.

Watch Interface’s Specialist Facilities promotional video: