aXenic is a leader in the design, development and production of ultra-high speed optical modulators, communications and sensing, particularly in the field of satellite communications.
The company have been based at NETPark since 2009 taking a suite of fully fitted cleanroom, laboratory and high-quality office space within the NETPark building in which they conduct the development and sale of their product portfolio.
Since moving to NETPark, aXenic has grown with the support of Business Durham and the North East Satellite Applications Centre of Excellence, one of two UK Catapult centres based at the site.
The support received has been instrumental in supporting business growth, providing networking opportunities at regular events, one-to-one support and access to regional expertise on subjects such as finance, skills and operations.
As the business has grown NETPark Manager Janet Todd has worked closely with aXenic CEO Steve Clements to ensure they have the right space and support to facilitate their growth.
Janet said: “Over the years the incubation space needed by a science and technology company can change frequently. At NETPark Plexus we understand this and try to accommodate changing needs of a business to create an environment where businesses can thrive in a sustainable way.”
In 2015 aXenic was acquired by management buyout and sought guidance from the North East Satellite Applications Centre of Excellence, managed by Business Durham, to support the company in a new and exciting direction by taking advantage of opportunities within the space and satellite sector. This led to aXenic being selected to take part in the prestigious UK Space Agency Incubator Programme, which the Centre facilitated.
NETPark works very closely with Durham University and the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) providing links to research, academia and facilities, which are of great value to many of the companies based at NETPark.
Steve Clements, CEO of aXenic, said: ‘Access to quality facilities was one of the main drivers for deciding to locate the business at the NETPark. We have been able to use this as a launch pad to link into support from world-class expertise from Durham University and other partners at NETPark in addition to the support we’ve received from Business Durham and the North East Centre of Excellence for Satellite Applications.”
aXenic have worked closely with Durham University to conduct further research and develop their technology. This included accessing the confocal microscopy facility in Biological and Biomedical Sciences and their Optical Applications Engineer, Nigel Cameron has attended the Durham University Industrial Partnership Committee in the School of Engineering and Computing Sciences.
What does the future hold for aXenic?
At the start of 2020 aXenic launched a project to develop revolutionary components for the next generation of telecommunications satellites after receiving a three-year grant of €400,000 from the European Horizon 2020 programme, facilitated by the North East Satellite Applications Centre of Excellence.
The funding is part of the SIPhoDiAS research and development (R&D) project, which brings together some of the biggest names in the space industry and aims to deliver faster and more affordable communications.
This will help deliver more reliable, affordable and accessible communications to the most remote parts of the world making communications such as high-speed internet connection more accessible for everyone regardless of physical location via satellite technology.
Steve added: “We are pleased to engage in leading edge space technology working with satellite providers, this time with Thales Alenia Space, as well as with the supply chain to help make the next generation of satellite communications a reality. This can make a real difference to delivering a whole range of new global services from space, including the highest quality internet.”