At Space West we are keen to shine a light on the thriving space SME community that drives our regional eco-system, so each of our newsletters will have a ‘Spotlight on’ where we will do just that. If you would like your business to feature in this section, please email Rebecca Huffee, Space West Cluster Manager, [email protected]
iCOMAT is based right in the heart of Bristol and was founded in 2019, and we’re absolutely delighted and honoured to be the first ‘Spotlight’ to be featured in the Space West newsletter.
With its early concept forged at the Bristol Composites Institute and University of Bristol, iCOMAT is now a well-established business with a growing team and order book! We currently have a site in Bristol and a satellite office in Athens, with big growth plans in terms of team and production over the coming year to service our global customer base.
iCOMAT has developed a patented manufacturing process for advanced carbon fibre composites. iCOMAT’s innovative technology, Rapid Tow Shearing (RTS), can place carbon fibre tapes along curved paths without generating defects. Its defect-free fibre steering capability realises ultra lightweight composite structures beyond the limit of the conventional straight fibre designs & complex geometry which isn’t possible using current automated manufacturing technologies.
Composite materials are anisotropic, they are only strong in the direction of their fibres. iCOMAT’s specialist technology steers the path of fibres, enabling optimisation of mechanical properties at any point of the structure & ultimately improve all aspects of structural performance. This produces significantly lighter, more efficient components and uses material in the most efficient way, thus reducing the amount of raw materials used & overall production costs. The technology is protected by 4 patents (e.g., GB2492594A, W02022058703A1) and iCOMAT has full ownership of all RTS IP (including the original patent by BCI; iCOMAT is a spin-out from BCI).
iCOMAT has already secured multiple blue-chip customers across aerospace and automotive (includingBAE, Joby-Aviation, Leonardo, Williams F1, JLR) and crucially is in the process of executing its 2nd GSTP contract (GSTP Phase1) with ESA/UKSA to enable production readiness for space structures.
Over the coming year iCOMAT intends to extend its engagement with the Space sector and become a key part of the UK’s supply chain. We’re really excited to be a member of the Space West network, and given the level of engagement already, it’s clear there’s so much more we can achieve as a cluster. We look forward to seeing you all at the next gathering.