Project Description

The NanocompEIM project consists of 2 phases. Phase 1 concluded in July 2015.

Phase 2 is funded by Innovate UK (formerly TSB) and work commenced in September 2017. It is a collaboration between GE Grid Solutions UK (formerly Alstom Grid UK), Gnosys Global Ltd and University of Southampton. The Supergrid Institute in France is involved as a cooperating partner.

Current Project Aims

This project develops & validates:

  • Pre-commercial, nanocomposite material formulations (with a new paradigm of performance).
  • Component manufacturing processes scaled to full size for HVDC & HVAC converter & substation equipment.
  • Prototype production.
  • Full qualification of large, full-size HVDC components in nanocomposite materials for priority first market use.

It will aim to develop lower cost & higher performance energy systems with:

  • Substantial CO2 and cost reductions.
  • Improvements in system reliability/availability.
  • Prototype production.
  • The project creates a UK-based Custom Materials Supply for rapid development and secure supply of affordable master batches for key components whilst driving deep electricity market adoption & applications through supply chain partnering & licensing.

The project is commercially innovative, carrying out this R&D with the engagement of a complete supply chain from materials producers to OEM for both components and equipment manufacturers to end users in the form of the three UK Transmission System Operators.

Phase 1 Project Description

The NanocompEIM Phase 1 Project was funded by the Technology Strategy Board in January 2012. It was a collaboration between Alstom Grid UK Ltd, Gnosys Global Ltd, the University of Southampton and Mekufa (UK) Ltd. National Grid, Scottish Power and Scottish and Southern Electric Transmission were also collaborating with the project as UK transmission system operators. Phase 1 concluded successfully in July 2015.

Phase 1 outcomes:

  • Gained an understanding and practical experience of the production of nanodielectric materials for potential application in HV transmission and distribution equipment (in existence today).
  • Developed a set of materials design and process rules to achieve the reliable production of high performance materials.
  • Developed processing and production strategies to produce materials with defined controlled dispersion and interfacial characteristics.
  • Achieved property and performance enhancements centred on the knowledge of structure-property‐process relationships.
  • Used the newly developed understanding of materials design and processing rules in the production of practical nanodielectric electrical insulation systems.
  • Demonstrated material scalability between laboratories produced nanocomposites and their use in power equipment by the industrial production and testing of demonstration components.


Partner Descriptions

GE Grid Solutions

GE’s Grid Solutions business serves customers globally with over 20,000 employees in approximately 80 countries. Grid Solutions helps enable utilities and industry to effectively manage electricity from the point of generation to the point of consumption, helping to maximise the reliability, efficiency and resiliency of the grid.


Gnosys Global

GnoSys is a multidisciplinary science and technology innovation company, combining depth of knowledge in physical science and engineering with commercial expertise. We have global outreach in our work supporting the electrical power and energy sectors.


University of Southampton

The University of Southampton combines academic excellence with an innovative and entrepreneurial approach to research, supporting a culture that engages and challenges students and staff in their pursuit of learning.


Innovate UK

Innovate UK is the UK's innovation agency working with people, companies and partner organisations to find and drive the science and technology innovations that will grow the UK economy.


Phase 2 Cooperating Partner

Supergrid Institute -

Phase 1 Technical Partners

Alstom Grid (Now GE Grid Solutions), Gnosys Global, University of Southampton, Mekufa UK

Phase 1 Cofunding Partners

SSE, Scottish Power, National Grid


  • Project Briefing Note PDF
  • TSB Phase 1 Case study

Conference Papers

  • "Nanocomposite electrical insulation material development for HVDC applications” INSUCON 2013, Birmingham, UK.
  • "Nanocomposite Thermosetting Materials for HVDC Applications" IEEE ICSD 2013, Bologna, Italy.
  • “Molecular Indications of Structure Property Relationships in Enhanced Nanocomposites” CEIDP 2015, Ann Arbour, USA
  • “Balanced Nanocomposite Thermosetting Materials for HVDC and AC Applications” IEEE EIC 2015, Seattle, USA.
  • “Nanodielectric Structure-Property Relationships and Design Rules using Chemometric Methods” ICD 2016, Montpellier, France
  • “New HVDC Nanocomposite Electrical Insulation for Improved MV and HVAC Performance” CIRED 2017, Glasgow, UK (Accepted- to be published and presented June 2017)


  • The June 2013 edition of Physics World, a Focus on Nanotechnology, features the NanocompEIM project in an article titled ‘Greening the Grid’.
  • The NanocompEIM Project was presented to the UK electrical insulation community through the UHVnet 2014 conference held in January 2014 at University of Surrey.
  • NanocompEIM was represented at the Low Carbon Networks and Innovation Conference (LCNI) 2014 in Aberdeen in the form of a poster presentation, it has also been represented at the 2015 and 2016 LCNI conferences.
  • Prof Gary Stevens gave an IET Regional lecture entitled “HVDC and Power Applications of Nano-materials” in October 2014 at Staffordshire University.
  • Prof Gary Stevens gave a presentation at HiPerNano in November 2015 in London.
  • Dr Ian German will be giving a presentation at HiPerNano in April 2017 in London.


Phase 1 has successfully completed

Phase 2 Gained funding from Innovate UK

Phase 2 commenced

NanocompEIM – to be represented at up and coming CIRED conference (Glasgow)

Contact Information

For all enquiries about this project. In the first instance please contact:

Dr Fabrice Perrot

GE Grid Solutions
St Leonards Avenue
ST17 4LX

Phone: (+44)(0)1785 78 65 03

Prof Gary Stevens

GnoSys Global Ltd
17-18 Frederick Sanger Road
Surrey Research Park

Phone: (+44)(0)1483 689 164


Alternatively you may send an email with the following form:

Email Address: