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Compressor wins first cash from engineering fund

Midlands firm Lontra has been announced as the first recipient of cash from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers’ (IME) new fund.

The Stephenson Fund aims to back technological innovation and Lontra has won investment for its Blade Compressor, which it claims offers a 20% reduction in energy consumption compared to other industrial compressors.

It’s already in production for the water industry and the new funding will help develop the design so that it can produce the air pressures required by industry. It could potentially be used for cement production through to applications on the oil and gas industry or food production.

Lontra chief executive Steve Lindsey said: “It’s great to be the first to receive support and investment from the Institution’s Stephenson Fund. This will support further development of our Blade Compressor as we seek new licensees. We’re proud that the industrial revolution continues to this day and that the UK remains at the forefront of engineering innovation.”

IME chief executive Stephen Tetlow said: “This investment by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers is not just about providing monetary investment, but about connecting Lontra to the vast resources and network of the Institution and its membership.

“The Stephenson Fund fulfils the Institution’s original purpose to give an impulse to invention and also help companies overcome the investment hurdle between Research and Development and bringing a product to market.

“I am really excited that through the Fund the Institution is able to support Lontra, as well as other companies, in developing exciting and innovative technologies which really are inventions likely to be useful to the world.  This is the Institution getting back to its roots.”

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