Scottish university spin-out targets renewables market following six-figure investment

Equipment designed by Synaptec for monitoring electricity grips
Equipment designed by Synaptec for monitoring electricity grips

A Scottish university spin-out which makes sensors for detecting faults on electricity grids has scooped investments totalling £370,000.

Synaptec plans to use the money to hire more staff members and break into the renewable energy and subsea markets.

The batch of funding came from business angel syndicate Equity Gap, the Scottish Investment Bank, Scottish Enterprise, and Strathclyde University, where the company originated.

Founded in 2014, Synaptec designs fibre-optic sensors that measure voltage, current, temperature, strain and dynamic vibration on electricity networks.

Operators can use the data to monitor their systems and spot problems earlier, thereby reducing downtime and costs.

Philip Orr, managing director and co-founder of Synaptec, whose clients include Scottish Power and SSE, said: “Monitoring, protection and control of power networks is becoming more important than ever thanks to increased global electricity demand and the simultaneous move to greater penetration of distributed renewable energy sources.

“By improving network management through enhanced awareness, we provide multiple benefits to network operators and society including cost reductions, enhanced security of energy supply, and reduced emissions.

“Our technology and approach has the potential to deliver similar performance improvements for other markets including renewables and subsea systems.”

Fraser Lusty, a director at Equity Gap and a former business manager at Bank of Scotland, said: “We are delighted to support Philip and the team at Synaptec. Their proprietary technology impressed greatly and will allow them to scale in two key sectors where they can facilitate operational efficiencies, as well as reduce costs, for global corporate customers.”