The Aura Innovation Centre enables businesses of all sizes to connect with the research power at the University of Hull to develop carbon-reducing ideas across all sectors. Working together to accelerate and de-risk innovation and maximise commercial returns.

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Our team of Innovation Managers become an extension of your team and help businesses to unlock the potential of their ideas and achieve their ambition; developing a deep understanding of your business need, before connecting your business to the right expertise at the University of Hull.

We’ve got leaders in their field and some of the brightest minds who can apply their intellectual rigour to any business environment. Working on exciting new ideas for over 40 projects and growing, due for delivery in 2020 alone. We’re accelerating business ideas with a breath of knowledge from areas of specialist expertise in a broad range of areas to bring ideas to reality.

Our research

Just some of the researchers that are accelerating innovative business ideas include:

View all AIC projects


Here at the University of Hull we’re rising to the challenge, seeking the solutions in both environmental and societal resilience to climate change alongside the innovations needed to drive a rapid transition to low-carbon economy.

Here’s just a flavour of research underway.


A ‘next generation’ energy station which aims to transform the way we power communities is currently being developed.

The unique concept will see multiple renewable fuel inputs, including industry and household waste, earth and water, solar and hydro power, wind and bio fuels, feed into a number of local community stations, where they will be converted to energy and distributed across the region. The concept is the first of its kind in integrating and converting multiple energy sources with significantly enhanced conversion ratios and will therefore maximize the energy efficiency and reduce energy waste.

The network of localised stations will decentralise the way we get energy, negating the need for a costly upgrade of the national grid, by collecting and distributing energy within communities, rather than drawing on power nationally. They will work by integrating a number of low carbon technologies including heat pump and heat storage facilities, combined heat and power units, renewable driven high efficient heating and cooling systems, and hydrogen fuel technologies to meet the power demands of customers – including residential and commercial buildings, industrial and transport, for example electric vehicles.

The concept is being developed by Professor Xudong Zhao, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies at the University of Hull.


In December 2013, a storm surge on the North Sea moved into the Humber Estuary and produced record water levels which flooded over 400 properties in Hull and East Yorkshire.

The Flood Resilience Innovation Centre (FLIC) project supports small and medium-sized businesses to develop new flood resilience products and services. Part-funded by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), FLIC brings the University of Hull’s world-class research in climate change, engineering, logistics, materials and computer science to Humber based SMEs.

To find out more, please email us at or call 01482 462275.
In addition, The University of Hull is working with Living with Water (LWW) partnership and is researching the impacts of the 2007 and 2013 floods, and current levels of awareness of flood alleviation measures being developed by LWW partners, flood prevention measures at household (or business or school) levels, and concerns about flooding.


Our Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies (CSET) is at the forefront of developments in renewable energy and sustainable technology.

Through the CSET, we are reducing reliance on fossil fuels and forging international collaborations to help progress new energy. From inventing a new super-efficient air-conditioning systems to creating solar-powered beds, we’re innovating solutions and technologies that have the potential to make massive reductions to the international carbon footprint.

Led by Professor Xudong Zhao, a key figure in global efforts to combat climate change by reducing carbon emissions.


Aura is at the forefront of innovation for the offshore wind sector through leading collaboration, pioneering ideas and outstanding innovation.

Led by the University of Hull, Aura’s mission is to identify opportunities to innovate and collaborate in offshore wind. Finding solutions for the challenges we face, from technical and operational to economic and societal, we’re working as a facilitator and catalyst to accelerate ground-breaking solutions with our partners – for the region, the UK and globally.

Rooted in the UK’s Energy Estuary, Aura is at the heart of the Humber Advanced Cluster and identified as a key delivery partner in the UK Government’s Offshore Wind Sector Deal.


Our experts at the Logistics Institute are working on an ambitious project that aims to change the way that freight typically moves through the UK – resulting in significant environmental and economic benefits.

Working as lead partner in the LHOFT (Liverpool-Humber Optimisation of Freight Transport) project, the team are helping establish an east-west freight transport corridor in the north of the UK. This will link Liverpool in the west with the Humber port complex in the east leading to shorter road-based journeys and longer sea-bound travel for cargo transportation. And deliver multiple environmental, cost and congestion benefits as a result.

By decreasing the amount of time goods spend on the road during transportation, LHOFT is also helping to tackle climate change. The ambition is to reduce UK land transport of 100 million miles of freight transport annually, reducing C02 emissions.

Our academics are providing logistics insight and expertise to create a modelling and analysis platform for the project. Visualising, interpreting and analysing freight movement options as well as creating new logistical solutions for the transportation of goods, our academics are helping make the LHOFT project’s ambitions a reality for the UK’s transportation industry.


As well as being the thought leaders driving these innovations, we’re also taking action as a University to make the changes needed.

The University announced an ambitious eight-year plan to become carbon neutral by 2027, pledging a commitment towards a strong, sustainable future for us all. Find out more