IP and licensing

The Technology Transfer Office is here to help you easily access the University of Surrey's intellectual property (IP) derived from its innovative research.

What we do

Sometimes the IP is ‘ready to go’ and available for licence, sometimes we need to discuss with you how we can access the research base and IP that is not yet ‘ready to go’ to solve your problem, or sometimes we can simply introduce you to the right researcher with the right expertise.

As we are in the business of finding solutions to your problems we are happy to discuss the best way of doing this. Our interest is to ensure that the outputs from university research are given the best chance of being put to good use in the wider world.

Technology Transfer team

Name Role Phone Email
Mr Jonathan Hodrien Acting Director of Technology Transfer 01483 683676 j.hodrien@surrey.ac.uk
Darian Brookes-Hefetz Technology Transfer Manager (Physical Sciences) 01483 689321 d.brookes@surrey.ac.uk
Mr Trevor Hartman Intellectual Property Commercialisation Manager 01483 682688 t.hartman@surrey.ac.uk
Ambi Batra Intellectual Property Officer 01483 682689 a.batra@surrey.ac.uk
Mr Peter Lancaster IMPACT Acceleration Account KE Manager 01483 684700 p.lancaster@surrey.ac.uk
Dr Joana Nunes de Carvalho Technology Transfer Administrator 01483 683790 j.nunesdecarvalho@surrey.ac.uk

Licensing opportunities

Below is a list of our technologies available for license or joint development. This is just a flavour of the research going on at the university as we are constantly discussing new technologies with our researchers.

If you don't see what you are looking for please get in contact with Mr Trevor Hartman (01483 682688 or t.hartman@surrey.ac.uk) and we'll see what we can do to help.

Engineering and physical sciences

For information on engineering and physical sciences technologies speak to Darian Brookes-Hefetz:

These ETFE-based radiation-grafted anion-exchange membranes containing either benzyltrimethylammonium or benzyl-N-methylpyrrolidinium head-groups are available to purchase. The membranes can be used in electrochemical devices such as alkaline membrane fuel cells. They are supplied in the chlorine anion forms and are at least 20 cm x 25 cm in area. They can be provided at either 55 ± 10 or 90 ± 10 μm thickness when fully hydrated. The ion-exchange capacities of these anion-exchange membranes are typically 1.9 ± 0.2 mequiv /g and the actual value of the ion-exchange capacity of the membranes supplied can be provided on request. The colour of the membranes are light orange to brown and they may emit a mild amine (rotten fish) odour. The membranes are insoluble in all common solvents including water and can be converted into other anion forms.

The cost of the membranes is £75 + VAT each.

The detailed chemistry and other basic physical properties of these classes of anion-exchange membrane can be found in Wang et al., Green Chemistry 2017, volume 19, pages 831-843, and Ponce-Gonzalez et al., Energy & Environmental Science 2016, volume 9, pages 3724-3735 (freely available under a CC-BY licence).

The membranes are made on demand and will be supplied within 2 months from the order date, sent through Royal Main International Tracked and Signed. The membranes are experimental and will be provided on a “best effort basis”. A maximum of five sheets can be supplied per customer without the need for a formal agreement. For non-EU customers the University is required to apply for an export licence.

For enquiries please contact Prof John Varcoe.

This is a new low-cost and highly stable catalyst for the transformation of carbon dioxide into value added products such as syngas. The catalyst avoids the use of expensive noble metals and can withstand long continuous operation of more than 300 hours without de-activation, maintaining high levels of CO2 conversion. The technology was developed jointly with The University of Alicante.

Status: Patent pending.

This is a new design of electrolytic cell for the generation of hydrogen. The improved cell has a hydrogen evolution rate nearly 3-times that of standard water electrolyser-based systems. The cell can operate at small scales for portable hydrogen generation in clean fuel cells or be integrated with other renewable energy sources.

Status: Patent pending.

PassInfinity is an "all in one", highly reconfigurable and scalable, back compatible, user- friendly framework for cyber security authentication. It allows the IT manager to move to different password systems with multiple authentication types to stay several steps ahead of the hacking community.

Status: Patents pending.

Object-based audio reproduces three-dimensional, immersive listening experiences with applications in VR and audiobroadcasting. The technique gives an improved listener experience over existing solutions. The technology has developed from the S3A project.

This technology provides real-time separation of sounds from a mixture of sound sources using a very small array of three or four microphones. The technology can be used to improve speech recognition or intelligibility, to separate individual sound sources, and in a noisy environment for removing unwanted sounds.

Status: There is a Granted US patent and a number of pending patents for this technology. For more information see: quad.io

This is new maths for extracting useful information, not previously accessible, from continuous periodic data streams. The entire waveform is analysed, allowing the detection of very subtle changes in any periodic waveform. Potential uses include fault detection to avoid catastrophic failure in turbines, leak detection in water systems and other engineering situations.

Status: Patents pending.

Bismuth-containing semi-conductor materials for light emission and detection applications. This range of new materials can increase the efficiency of lasers, LEDs, photodetectors and solar cells by 70 - 80 % with substantial reductions in the complexity and costs of production.

Status: Granted Chinese patent and others pending.

Current mid IR detectors operating above 2µm are based on toxic materials and are difficult and expensive to make. This is a new class of cheap, easy-to-manufacture, non-toxic detectors based on silicon using conventional fabrication techniques that could replace mercury cadmium telluride (MCT), non-dispersive IR (NDIR) and other similar detectors. Applications include thermal imaging and gas detection.

Status: Granted US patents and others pending.

This technology is based on the milling of materials using a focused ion beam to produce 3D nano and micro-structures. With applications throughout micro and nano-technology and manufacturing, the technique can produce a wide-range of curved structures, such as lens arrays, with high precision. 

This technology was developed in collaboration with the National Physical Laboratory. Status: Granted EU and Japanese patents.

This technology is for tracking Binary Offset Carrier (BOC) navigation signals planned for the modernised US GPS, the European Galileo and Chinese BeiDou satellite navigation systems. This is the only method that truly avoids false lock onto the GNSS signal and therefore has applications in safety of life and other critical applications. It is also less affected by multipath signals.

Status: There are numerous granted patents on this technology including in Europe, US and China.

This is a way of growing graphene and carbon nanotubes on materials such as metal sheets, plastics, glass and semiconductors which protects the catalyst from oxidation, maintaining the high quality and conductivity of the material. The technique also allows the etching of dielectric materials which are buried in catalyst, whilst keeping the catalyst protected from etchants, ensuring high adhesion. Uses include coatings for satellite structures in space.

Status: Patent pending.

This new design of the laser diode avoids he need for external cooling systems by designing temperature stability into the chip.

This technology was developed by Professor Alf Adams, who invented the strained-layer quantum-well laser which features in all types of electronic equipment. Status: Granted US patent.

This is a new design for security panels. The panels are made from aluminum foam making them strong but light weight and their design makes then difficult to attach with powerful cutting and drilling tools. Applications may be safes or security rooms. Panels have been tested by the Home Office (UK) and were rated the highest classification for forcible entry resistance against angle grinders. 

This technology was developed in collaboration with the Fraunhofer IWU. Status: Patent pending.

The Surrey Face Model consists of a multi-resolution principal component analysis model of face shape and colour information and allows the reconstruction of a 3D face from a single 2D image. Such models are used for 3D head pose estimation, face analysis, face recognition and facial landmark detection and tracking. The Surrey Face Model is available on GitHub for non-commercial purposes and commercial licences are available on request.


This is a new 3D disordered photonic material and method of design. Such materials can be designed and built to manipulate light. Applications include: production of synthetic materials with iridescent qualities and optical components, wavelength filters and light guides for telecommunication.

For more information see Local self-uniformity in photonic networks

Status: Patent pending.

This is a new material made of oligoglycines that form self-assembling flat, rigid layers on surfaces whilst acting as moisture-barrier coatings. Use as coatings for transparent electrodes has shown increased conductivity whilst providing a clear water-repelling and self-cleaning coating. The materials are dissolved in water at low pH and fall out of solution at around neutral pH. The materials have also shown to have applications as nanocarriers for transport of hydrophobic materials, for release at a particular pH.

This technology was developed in collaboration with Instituto de Carboquímica ICB-CSIC and University of Zaragoza, Spain. Status: Patent pending.

This device produces sheets of nano-fibres (“carbon nanotube paper”) from polymer solutions using electrospinning. Such a device can be used particularly for the manufacture of sheets of carbon, silicon or boron nitride nanotubes. The alignment and diameter of nano-fibres can be closely controlled at a high manufacturing speed whilst avoiding blockages that come with typical jet-spray based devices. Uses include: fire protection, development of heat sinks, electromagnetic shielding, filter membranes, armour plating.

Status: Patent pending.

Life sciences

For information on life sciences technologies speak to Jonathan Hodrien: 

This is new maths for visualising and quantifying changes in complex periodic waveform data, undetectable by conventional methods. It extracts useful information, not previously accessible, from continuous periodic data streams by analysing the entire waveform. This allows the detection of very subtle changes in any periodic waveform. Potential uses include:

  • Continuous analysis of blood pressure traces to enable earlier detection of sepsis and avoid morbidity and deaths; this application is being developed in collaboration with Kings College London.
  • Providing information to users in wellness and fitness training programmes to help monitor progress.
  • Cardiac monitoring in animal studies for drug development.

Status: Patent pending.

Scientists from the University of Surrey and Imperial College London developed an invention which uses hydrogel-based molecularly imprinted polymers (HydroMIPs) for protein crystallisation, providing a higher yield of protein crystals over current techniques. This method also works with protein structures that are difficult to crystallise using other methods. For more information on the purchase of HydroMIPS please contact Jonathan Hodrien

Status: Granted UK patent.

A naturally occurring material that provides a cheap and safe way of preventing growth of pathogens, bacteria and production of ammonia. In poutry housing it will significantly improve animal welfare and help the farms meet new stricter European legislation on the release of ammonia. In domestic use it will help prevent bacteria associated with food poisoning and reduce odour from pet bedding. 

Status: Granted patents in EU and US.

A newly discovered natural antimicrobial mixture that is extremely safe to use and has a residual effect when applied to food and surfaces. Applications include hospital infection control (for MRSA etc), prevention of fruit spoilage, general uses in industry and around the home. 

Status: Granted patents in China, Japan and UK.

The design and arrangement of the pressure sensors used in this respirometer makes this device both bi-directinal and of a higher sensitivity and higher accuracy than current respirometers, whilst still price competitive. This device has been prototyped as a respirometer and features disposable mouthpieces.

For more information see the Surrey Sensors website.

Status: Patent pending.

Developed in collaboration with Moorfields Eye Hospital this software separates normal from abnormal retinal images allowing skilled people to concentrate on diagnosis and disease progression. Moorfields estimates that 80% of their time is dedicated to separating normal and abnormal images – it can therefore improve throughput and reduce costs in screening and diabetic monitoring programmes.  It has been tested in over 34,000 images of different ethnicities with 94.8% sensitivity, 82.25% specificity and ROC 0.97.

Status: Patent pending.

This is a urine based assay for the detection and quantification of the EN2 protein secreted by prostate and bladder cancers, and a further assay based on EN2 mRNA found in urine derived cell pellets.  Monoclonal antibodies are available for the protein assay and primer sequences for the mRNA assay. Licensees will need to develop their own assay on a suitable platform.

Already licenced for hospital and laboratory use, and available for licencing for point-of-care. Status: Granted and pending patents worldwide.

This is a method of producing activated charcoal through heating particular plant-based materials, without the need for addition of activating agents. The process makes the method of manufacturing activated carbon simple and low-cost.

Status: Granted US and UK patents.

Spin-out companies


Founded in 1985, in collaboration with Oxfam, and spun out of the University of Surrey in 2006, DelAgua designs, manufactures, distributes and supports water testing and treatment products for use in the developing world. Since its development, the water test kit is used by all the major international NGOs and other aid agencies in more than 130 countries around the world.

Modern Water

Surrey Aquatechnology has been incorporated in to Modern Water who own and are developing exciting leading-edge desalination technology. It was spun out of the University of Surrey based on a portfolio of water desalination IP.

Surrey Nanosystems

Surrey NanoSystems is focused on providing production platforms for using carbon nanotubes (CNT's) and other nanowires in high technology applications. This includes using CNTs as a replacement for the conventional metals used in the fabrication of silicon chips which are approaching their performance limits.

The concept behind Surrey NanoSystems started in 2005, as a joint venture between University's Advanced Technology Institute (ATI) and the thin film tool manufacturer CEVP.


GnoSys was established from the Polymer Research Centre (PRC) in 2006. GnoSys are a multi-disciplinary science and technology company, specialising in providing consultancy services in research, analysis, testing, business development, environmental systems analysis, resource efficiency, problem solving and expert witness.

DEPtech (formerly DEPwell)

DEPtech's DEP-Well technology is a novel platform technology for electrophysiology measurements on cells or bacteria. Unlike other tools (such as flow cytometry, flipper, patch clamp) they offer a label-free non-destructive technique that directly measures physical properties of a cell, while increasing throughput and automation.

This allows users to rapidly identify if and how a new drug candidate works while saving costs on reagents and assay development. High speed and low costs allow DEP-Wells to be used as a diagnostic tool, where conversional methods are too slow and expensive.


Si-Light’s patented technology enables the manufacturing of efficient silicon LEDs that emit light in the 1.2 microns to 1.5 microns spectrum and which are compatible with standard semiconductor manufacturing processes.

Quantum Filament Technologies (QFT)

A joint spin-out with the University of Dundee, QFT was formed with the aim of commercialising a novel platform technology for field emission which can underpin the next generation of flat display devices.

Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL)

In the mid-70s researchers at Surrey believed that the building of satellites could be done more quickly and much cheaper. In 1985 SSTL was formed and has been sending small satellites into space longer, more successfully and more economically than anyone else in the world.


OmniPerception is a global supplier of computer vision capabilities, specialising in facial biometrics and advanced image processing. The company’s software provides automated solutions for the recognition of objects and people in a wide range of customer applications – offering significant added benefits in performance and reliability.


Toric’s technologies are based on a radical means for suppressing phase noise and time jitter in electronic circuits. This, unusually, uses a feedforward technique based on linear circuit technology. The principal technique, and variants of it, are protected by one or more of Toric's patents.


Stockgrand exploits the research expertise of its staff who are based at the University of Surrey. Its profits are used to support research into the causes and consequences of biological rhythm disorders and they also carry out clinical trials on a contract basis.

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