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Header image with illustration of newspaper front page, reading 'Good News #16'
July, 2020

The Good News #16

Masks might be mandatory in shops now but being miserable on a Monday is still optional! We’ve gathered the latest good news in tech, innovation and the creative industries in one place, to put a smile on your face.

The Digital Engineering Technology & Innovation initiative

The Digital Engineering Technology & Innovation initiative, or DETI to its friends, has launched and will play an important role in driving innovation and digitally enabled recovery following the Coronavirus outbreak.

DETI is a research, innovation and skills initiative to develop and accelerate digital engineering across multiple sectors for future generations of engineers and engineering products. It is receiving £5m from the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) and is expected to deliver at least £62m of added research and development value over 5 years.

The initiative is part of the West of England Combined Authority’s commitment to prioritising innovation to improve business productivity and resilience, create new skills and employment opportunities for residents, and help the shift towards a low-carbon economy.

DETI will work with leading companies and support industry to reduce carbon emissions by producing better products that are lighter, more fuel efficient and have less waste through undertaking research and innovation in the virtual world. It will coordinate and deliver on key industry challenges, enabling companies of all sizes to collaborate on ‘proof of concept’ projects that address technology, process and people barriers to digital transformation. Key demonstrators that will be delivered in December 2020 include Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Manufacturing which will enable ‘right every time’ manufacturing, and a Virtual Reality (VR) interactive training solution in February 2021.

At a time when the job market is increasingly competitive, DETI will initiate a comprehensive skills and workforce development programme and will engage with 1,000 young people from socially disadvantaged areas in the West of England, encouraging diversity and inclusivity.  The programme will also engage with schools, further and higher education to demonstrate how digital engineering can contribute to the sustainability goals for the West of England.

Two men working in a lab

Creative Youth Network

A former magistrates court in Bristol, originally built in 1879, is set to become a new creative enterprise hub. Creative Youth Network, a non-profit that enables young people no matter what their background or circumstances are, to reach their own potential, has secured £4.25m of funding from the National Lottery Heritage, which will cover more than two thirds of the cost to transform the space.

The £6.5m project will see the Old Bristol Magistrates Courts reimagined and redeveloped into The Courts. It will be an enterprise centre to help young people access the creative industries, set up their own businesses and develop their opportunities, with enterprise workshops, mentoring, incubator space and paid internships.

The development is expected to produce an annual “gross value added” of £4.85m for the South West and will host around more than 100 jobs once fully open.

 It’s an amazing project that will both help young people in the area and further boost the creative industries in the region.

Sketch of how the former magistrates court will look once it's a creative enterprise hub

Largest ever 3D map of the universe released

There’s a starman waiting in the sky…and we might be a bit closer to meeting him as scientists have released the largest ever three-dimensional map of the universe.

The map proves that the universe is basically flat and fills in an 11 billion year gap in its history. Dr Dawson, a cosmologist at the University of Utah, lead the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) team which worked for the past five years to fill in that gap. The team’s results were produced in an international collaboration with more than 100 astrophysicists taking part in something called the extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (eBOSS).

The survey captured detailed measurements of more than two million galaxies and quasars, covering 11 billion years of cosmic spacetime. The map reveals how the structure of the universe is defined by filaments and voids of matter, dating back to when it was just 300,000 years old.

Individual groups in the eBOSS team at universities around the world analysed different areas, creating different parts of the map using galaxies emitting different wavelengths of light.

While most of their discoveries go a bit over our heads, it’s a hugely exciting development that will lead to further insight into the unknown universe that we’re a tiny part of. Alexa, play the Star Wars theme song.

Red image of the universe, taken from the largest ever 3D map of the universe.

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