28 July 2022 | Innovation | Our Work

Innovation Festival category winners revealed

The winners of this year’s Innovation Festival have been revealed by the Local Council Roads Innovation Group (LCRIG) and will now receive funding to develop their innovation or facilitate a trial of their product or solution on a local authority network.

The LCRIG Innovation Festival, which took place at Newark Showground earlier this month, was a first of its kind event – giving qualifying innovators the chance to receive funding or secure trials.

In advance of the Festival, a number of local authorities committed to making their networks available for trials and a portion of all exhibition space and sponsor sales at the event was put into the LCRIG / Steve Berry Innovation Fund.

This funding will now be distributed to winning innovators, or used to contribute to the cost of a trial, for each innovation category.

Local authority delegates were asked to judge entries from Qualifying Innovators over the two days of the event. All scores were then collated at the end of the festival and the LCRIG Infrastructure Innovation Board reviewed the results, before making a final decision on the winning innovations.

LCRIG Infrastructure Innovation Board Chair Ian Large said: “The Festival was a huge success. It was a busy couple of days with great engagement from everyone who attended, enthusiastic participation and great feedback on the day. The phone and email traffic following the event has been non-stop. Innovators/companies are keen to keep the great connections made going, and highway authorities want to take up the innovations that were seen and demonstrated.

“The public sector scoring of what was on show was interesting to look through and I would say enthusiastically taken up with the feedback and scores directing us to the winners in each category.

“I’m really pleased with the outcomes, and all are worthy category winners. The next steps are to start to look at matching the winners to highway authorities and for trials to actually take place on networks. The festival was great but it’s not over by a long stretch. From here on in its going to get really interesting so keep watching this space to keep tabs on the winners’ journeys.”


The winners are as follows:


Fleet & Equipment – Multevo – Multi-purpose dual fuel hydrogen vehicle


Multevo launched the multi-purpose dual fuel hydrogen highway maintenance machine, which reduces emissions by 40% whilst still maintaining high daily outputs. The machine can be fitted with a planer attachment to permanently fix potholes, patches, and defects. In addition, it can be used to support with winter maintenance, vegetation management and flood defence operations. Tests have shown that the equipment can save 26,832 kg of CO2e and 343.20 kg of N2O per year. 



Health & Safety – WJ – ThermoPrint


The ThermoPrint is a one-of-a-kind machine that is designed to save lives and revolutionise the road marking sector. Currently, most of the thermoplastic road marking application on local authority networks is carried out by hand, either using hand moulds for letters, numbers, arrows, and symbols, etc. or lining prams that are pushed by the operative for the lane markings. By using the ThermoPrint this way of working, which has remained little changed since road markings were first introduced over 100 years ago, will be completely transformed. It does this by removing the operatives from the carriageway and enabling all these markings to be delivered via an automated machine utilising advanced application equipment. The software that the machine uses has all road symbols that are used on the UK network programmed in and have been created to be geometrically correct to road marking specifications. Using this system, the operative is brought into the safety of the cab, from where they just have to drive to the site and begin the road marking installation. In addition to vastly improving safety by reducing work related road risk, this system also delivers exceptional efficiency benefits in terms of increased speed of application and through the reduction of required traffic management when operatives are working on live carriageways.


Highway Defects – QROS – QED Hydrocarbon Analyser


The QED Hydrocarbon Analyser from QROS gives instant results for coal tar in road binder at under £5 per sample or less, with results comparable to high quality GCMS costing up to £250 per sample. It is more reliable than PAK spray, and can be used at the roadside or at a depot. It is easy to use, training takes around two hours. The QED has been widely used on prestige projects such as the London Olympics, Crossrail, HS2 and Thames Tideway, and is currently in use throughout the UK and around the world. It has been recommended in place of GCMS by the North Carolina Department of Transport for their Leaking Underground Storage Tank project, as it has been shown to achieve savings of at least 55%. The QED is currently undergoing several evaluations in the UK and overseas, by construction/remediation companies, laboratories and local councils. Among the company’s UK customers are Lancashire County Council, Hanson Aggregate, COLAS, GRS Roadstone, the Ministry of Defence and the RAF. QROS have distributors for the QED in Taiwan, the USA, South Africa and Scandinavia. 


Retroreflectivity – Clearview Intelligence – ClickLite Active Road Stud


Clearview Intelligence have created a durable, compact ClickLite Active Road stud which has the ability to be installed within a metal shoe body. Considering stud casings are already installed across the strategic road network, Clearview have designed a detachable LED, solar-powered Active Road Stud without entirely reconstructing it. Our active solar stud now mechanically locks into a standard P09 casing with a clip insert making them easily replaceable. This shoe provides an extra layer of protection to the stud, making it more durable. Additionally, the shoe gives the resin used to secure the stud more surface area to bond onto. The company believe that this concept can be applied to all types of active studs in the future.


Transport Technology – Clearway Technology – Operative wearable safety recording device


Reducing roadworker exposure has been a real focus area on the highways network over the last few years, given the ever-increasing complexity of infrastructure projects and the unfortunate increase in roadworker abuse. Many network operators are turning to Bodycams to help record these incidents and help with remote support for engineers on the ground. 
Clearway Technology has been working to enable this with an industry first wearable piece of technology. Given the need to have multiple devices for various activities Clearway have amalgamated these into one piece of equipment for the operative in either the form of a body cam or for some use cases the device simply attaches to the workers hard hat. 
With the function to live stream this also means less return visits to site, got a problem, easily have your co-workers login live to what you are looking at and solve issues in real time on site, give the view from the workers eye level prospective. This reduces the need for people to attend site for inspections and helps designers with technical queries. 

Watercourse management – Kaarbontech – Risk SMART Drainage Management


Risk SMART allows local authorities to take a data-led, risk-based approach to drainage management, aligning with the UKRLG’s Code of Practice. Using data collected from the network, gullies are scored and the results displayed in a clear dashboard. This enables quick proactive maintenance decisions, based on accurate data, increasing the efficiency of the local authority, saving time, resource and ensuring the best use of budgets. Risk SMART is being adopted by a growing number of local authorities. This is allowing Kaarbontech to build a national picture and introduce further efficiencies, from a broader, more well-informed view. Within two years of using the SMART software, 86% of customers have shifted to a fully proactive cleaning regime. Collecting data from each new local authority allows the company to extend the picture it is building of the national drainage network. This allows the option to draw comparisons and, combined with open-source data, begin to recognise similarities and develop actionable insights. Efficiencies can then be introduced across local authority boundaries along with the sharing of best practice to increase efficiencies further.


Winter maintenance – Rennicks – Internet of Things Weather Station


The product is an Internet of Things (IoT) Weather Station providing users with online knowledge about road conditions so that they can act promptly and in time. The weather station is a multi-sensor device measuring both ground and air temperature as well as air humidity. Authorities can use this data to see at a local level whether winter road treatments are needed. The system isn’t only limited to the roadside, it can also play a significant role in monitoring the conditions of cycle path networks, car parks or the like, enabling operators to keep areas safe for use. With the drive to introduce active travel schemes its critical that highway operators have a firm grasp on seasonal weather impacts whatever the weather condition. The IoT Weather Station delivers data every fifteen minutes providing the user with current data about icy road conditions exactly where the station is installed. The data is easily accessible from a purpose-built browser-based software platform where alarms can be set, and notifications can be delivered when self-determined values are reached. This functionality automates the monitoring process, removing the need to have users constantly monitoring data. This IoT Weather Station offers users reliable, easily accessible, and affordable sensor solutions. The low-cost solution allows for the deployment of several units at multiple locations enabling authorities to create fine meshed monitoring which provides the best possible basis of targeted action. 


Green Estate – Asphalt-IQ – Road Surfacing Carbon Emissions Calculator and Smart Tag System


Asphalt IQ has developed an innovative system for calculating and potentially mitigating the carbon emissions of any road surfacing project. The system utilises the company’s novel Smart A-Tag in conjunction with a Smartphone App called Offset. The app enables on site, geo located calculation of the carbon emissions associated with asphalt production, transportation and surfacing activities. The calculation is completed in less than 60 seconds. The user is then offered the chance to mitigate the carbon footprint through verified carbon offsets which include the option of domestic UK based environmental projects. The calculation of the carbon footprint together with the certificate of offset is uploaded to the Smart A-Tag which is embedded into the asphalt pavement giving a permanent record of carbon neutrality stored within the road itself. The information contained in the Smart A-Tag can be accessed with a simple tap of a Smartphone up to years later, enabling the road to “Speak for Itself” and tell its own carbon history. Carbon offset schemes are often accused of a lack of transparency and potential “greenwashing”. Offset by Asphalt-IQ is different. Not only are domestic UK carbon mitigation schemes offered, the Smart A-Tag can record and store in the road, the exact location of the trees which are planted. The trees are part of managed rewilding schemes and are assured to be the correct type and species to encourage the development of local flora and fauna by eco delivery partners Wanderlands.