Nigel Whittle, Head of Medical & Healthcare, features in Critical Communications Today this week.

Drones have the potential to revolutionise public safety operations in areas such as fire and rescue. But there are regulatory and logistical barriers.

Drones are also being used in remote areas for the transfer of biological samples to hospitals, says Dr Nigel Whittle, head of medical and healthcare at Plextek. He points to an overseas company based in Indonesia. “They have a drone system to carry samples. They have navigation and control aspects and they need cameras and radars to help fly and avoid obstacles. We offer a sense-and-avoid radar system which can detect power lines. There are lots of these throughout the islands and you need to avoid them.”

Plextek’s sense-and-avoid millimetre-wave radar system operates at 60GHz. “It’s more for reconnaissance purposes – to fly around buildings, for example,” says Dr Whittle. “With a camera, you might not see obstacles, but with a millimetre-wave radar you might – and it works in bad weather too.”

To read the full article Click Here.

First city-wide Sentir monitoring system installed in New York with Con Edison

Cambridge, UK – 16th September 2019 – UK engineering and design consultancy, Plextek has been working with US-based CNIguard to develop a new IoT-based system to prevent manhole explosions, primarily caused by bad weather and flooding interacting with aging underground power infrastructures. For example, a mixture of melting snow and road salt can wash into manholes, leading to the electricity cables arcing.

In America’s biggest cities, hundreds of service manholes catch fire or explode every year, with the consequences ranging from serious injury to actual fatalities. In the UK, there have been more than 80 recorded incidents in London alone in the last few years, according to the UK Health and Safety Executive.

CNIguard’s new Sentir system – the first innovation of its type – is currently being deployed in New York by energy supplier Con Edison and being trialled by others, delivering successful results. It works by monitoring gas, stray voltages, arcing, salinity, temperature and humidity with embedded IoT sensors underground and transmitting these signals to a dashboard on a smart phone, laptop or other device by radio, cellular, PSTN, fibre optic or satellite links. The system uses powerful cloud-based analytics to identify and predict conditions that may result in an incident so that preventative actions can be taken to avoid a potential disaster.

The Sentir system also helps to secure underground boxes, chambers, vaults, cabinets, kiosks and bunkers from intrusion, theft and vandalism with the help of visual and infra-red cameras, while providing flood warnings and other safety, environmental and quality monitoring.

“Plextek’s expertise in communication and sensor systems allowed us to accelerate our development and rapidly deploy Sentir into the market,” said Dr. Edward Klinger, CEO of CNIguard. “Their work has enabled Sentir to include several different variations of environmental sensor with cellular capability powered by a reliable long-life battery or harvested power from underground cables themselves.”

“Up until this technology was developed, these issues have been approached by utility companies and networks in a reactionary way, so little has been done to predict or prevent conditions which could cause explosions or stray voltage events,” added Klinger. “On top of this, global urban populations are set to rise, putting increased pressure on networks and this combined with environmental and climate factors will make these incidents even more common.”

Following the successful launch with Con Edison in New York, CNIguard is looking to work with other energy suppliers in the UK and around the world, helping to increase the safety of city street infrastructures and networks.

Notes to editors

About Plextek
Based near Cambridge, UK, Plextek designs new products, systems, and services for its clients in a diverse range of industries including defence & security, medical & healthcare, and wireless communications.

Central to its culture is the company’s ability to innovate, taking an idea from concept to market. For more than 25 years the team of consultants, engineers and project managers has turned our clients’ business opportunities into commercial success, designing, manufacturing and supplying leading-edge products. Supported by our network of suppliers, commercial partners and research organisations, Plextek is the trusted partner of choice for more than 300 commercial clients, government agencies, and ambitious start-up companies.

About CNIguard
CNIguard is a high technology firm delivering infrastructure protection and asset management solutions to the energy, electricity, water, transportation and other vital sectors. Our devices include Sentir (Manhole Monitoring System), GasMarshal (Gas Monitoring System), InDetect (Intrusion Detection System) and OverLine (Overhead Line Monitoring System).
https://www.cniguard.com/about-us/

For images, information or interview requests, please contact: Adam Roberts via email: press@plextek.com or call: +44 (0) 1799 533200

Can the internet of things save the planet? article image

“Only governments can fix the problem of global warming, right?

The massive change in behaviour that we need across the board is only going to happen because governments mandate it. Businesses and individuals will accept this and do what they are told, or will be incentivised to do so. I guess that’s how we tend to think it will play out…”

Our CEO, Nicholas Hill features in Disruption Hub this week.

To read the full article click here.

Cambridge, UK – 7th May 2019 – UK-based engineering and design consultancy, Plextek is launching a new innovation business unit called Ignite Exponential, to help established companies compete with agile and fast moving start-ups that are driving new disruptive technologies.

Ignite Exponential (IEX) aims to bridge the innovation gap faced by market-leading businesses struggling to stay ahead and meet changing customer expectations in a climate of unprecedented uncertainty and aggressive competition. In particular, the rise of new technologies such as Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are dissolving the barriers to entry, enabling the rapid introducton of new product and service offerings and challenging existing business models.

Ignite Exponential will build on the 30 years’ experience Plextek has working at the leading-edge of advanced technologies to help its partners navigate this changing landscape, through strategic innovation, future-focussed marketing, human-centric design and enabling technology.

Alan Cucknell, who has been appointed to head up Ignite Exponential, summarises how IEX will bring a new approach to innovation:

“I’ve spent my career helping global companies to innovate and seen how trying to create non-standard solutions to strategically important problems can lead companies to adopt standard processes, which can lead to standard results! There is no silver bullet for strategic innovation in these increasingly complex times and it is too important to outsource. Instead, we will look to create hybrid, collaborative and cross-functional approaches that harness combined skillsets, tools and experience and help to build internal ownership”.

Alan Cucknell, Head of Ignite Exponential, leading an innovation workshop at Cambridge Network Job Fair
Alan Cucknell, Head of Ignite Exponential, leading an innovation workshop at Cambridge Network Job Fair 2019 (source: www.igniteexponential.com)

Nicholas Hill, CEO of Plextek adds:

“Front end innovation requires different mindsets, skills, processes and tools to downstream engineering. That’s why Ignite Exponential draws on the specialist development processes, systems and capabilities that Plextek is well known for, to create a distinct offering – a front end innovation partner that is agile, multi-disciplined and experienced. While the units will work closely together, the teams, systems, environment and culture are independent, to focus on maximising the impact of our work.”

Together, Ignite Exponential and Plextek will be able to partner with clients from defining innovation strategy through designing purposeful business models, platform and product solutions to developing final products and manufacturing to market.

An alternative is for established players to innovate through acquisition, but this can lead to paying over the odds and result in costly mistakes. “More than ever, innovation will determine the success or failure of established companies over the next decade – it is too important to be left to chance” says Alan Cucknell.

For more information about Ignite Exponential and how they are helping partners navigate this new complex landscape, please visit www.igniteexponential.com

Notes to editors

About Ignite Exponential
Based near Cambridge, UK, Ignite Exponential (IEX) is a multi-disciplinary team which helps established businesses grow strategically in the face of the unprecedented uncertainty and aggressive competition. IEX brings together an unusual combination of hands-on capabilities in developing cutting edge with an expertise and track record in strategic innovation and disruptive design.

For more information, call us on: +44 (0) 1799 533 345 or email: hello@igniteexponential.com or visit: www.igniteexponential.com

 

About Plextek
Based near Cambridge, UK, Plextek designs new products, systems, and services for its clients in a diverse range of industries including defence & security, medical & healthcare, and wireless communications.

Central to its culture is the company’s ability to innovate, taking an idea from concept to market. For more than 25 years the team of consultants, engineers and project managers has turned our clients’ business opportunities into commercial success, designing, manufacturing and supplying leading-edge products. Supported by our network of suppliers, commercial partners and research organisations, Plextek is the trusted partner of choice for more than 300 commercial clients, government agencies, and ambitious start-up companies.

For images, information or interview requests, please contact: Adam Roberts via email: press@plextek.com or call: +44 (0) 1799 533200

Cambridge, UK – 18th September 2018 – Design and innovation consultancy, Plextek have taken part in one of Cambridgeshire’s largest annual charity events, The Chariots of Fire Relay Race to raise money for Cambridge Community Foundation.

Chariots of Fire is a 1.7 mile relay race throughout the colleges of Cambridge University with teams of 6 runners each.

Participating with two teams, “Team Plextrek” and “Team Plextek Plodders”, Plextek have managed to raise over £200.00 in donations.

The money will go towards support services for local young people that have faced difficulties because of poor mental health, bereavement, long-term illness or disability.

Organising the company teams, Alexandra Wright, Bid Manager summarises:

“Chariots of Fire provides a highly enjoyable and fun way of raising money for a great cause. It also promotes a little healthy competition between the local businesses in Cambridge, either through the lap times or the eye-catching costumes.

I’m pleased to say that both teams did really well with Team Plextrek completing the course in a time of 01:11:35 for an overall position of 45 out of 277.

Team Plextek Plodders were close behind, completing the course in a time of 01:16:03 for an overall position of 74 out of 277. Thank you to everyone who donated.”

Notes to editors

Based near Cambridge, UK, Plextek designs new products, systems, and services for its clients in a diverse range of industries including defence & security, medical & healthcare, and wireless communications.

Central to its culture is the company’s ability to innovate, taking an idea from concept to market. For more than 25 years the team of consultants, engineers and project managers has turned our clients’ business opportunities into commercial success, designing, manufacturing and supplying leading-edge products. Supported by our network of suppliers, commercial partners and research organisations, Plextek is the trusted partner of choice for more than 300 commercial clients, government agencies, and ambitious start-up companies.

For images, information or interview requests, please contact: Adam Roberts via email: press@plextek.com or call: 01799 533200