We are Catalyst, an innovation consultancy. We help companies do new and valuable things, like products, technology and strategy. We use a fast paced, experiment focussed approach, to realise your innovation as quickly as possible.

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Innovation Process

From creating many ideas in ideation sessions, to adopting a hands-on approach in prototyping and testing - we can help. This might be through 5-day innovation sprints, intense 2-day workshops or longer bespoke innovation programmes. We work with you, to identify problems and bottlenecks, to generate new and better ideas, or to create and test initial prototypes.

Understand the Problem

Achieve Clarity. Separate symptoms and causes to clearly define the problem as a challenge to be addressed.

Generate New Ideas

Authentic Creativity. Be guided through rapid & challenging new concept creation.

Back the Winners

We perform structured analysis to test business value, feasibility and user reception of concepts in order to converge on a winner.

Innovation Sprints
We guide you through challenging and fast paced sprint workshops to achieve problem clarity, generate more and better ideas or to translate winning ideas into early prototypes.
Ideation Workshops
The generation of ideas, and the rapid assessment of those ideas for user reception, business logic and technical feasibility, are at the core of all Catalyst worksflows.
LoFi Prototyping
Before moving to formal prototyping, we encourage serious play, fast exploration and experimentation with low fidelity prototyes.


A range of real and virtual rapid prototyping approaches are used to turn concepts into working prototypes to explore, test and validate with users. This can range from simple paper and code prototyping, to advanced prototyping in complex system simulations, realtime 3D simulation or working technology demonstrators.

Hardware in the Loop

From mobile apps, to wearable devices, we have vast experience in the creation of working technology prototypes, that operate independently, or in co-simulation with our 3D simulation systems.

Synthetic Environments

We create highly detailed bespoke realtime 3D simulations based on complex real-world environments that enable future tech to be explored at vastly reduced risk and cost.


Our synthetic environments are ideal for the development, training (gym), and test of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning algorithms within complex representative environments.

User Testing

We conduct a range of user testing and experiments, from human factors and cognitive load investigations, to informal user / technology exploration and user reception tests.

Technology Modelling

We have experience in technology modelling at all levels of fidelity, from behavioural, to detailed system architecture and physics. Test before build!

HMI Design vs. Cognitive Burden
'Hire car in the loop' experiment using large format 3D environment and EEG 'brainwave' measurement to examine human response to changes in HMI design for road vehicles.

[1] Measuring the Cognitive Demands of In-Vehicle Dashboard and Centre Console Tasks. 2017 Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics.
Complex Urban Synthetic Environment (Catalyst SE2)
Detailed high rise environment and assets for virtual design, experiment and test activities that are not possible in the real world. Features environmental control including daylight and weather, traffic, bystanders, multiple manned and unmanned vehicles.
Novel Interface Methods
Multiple real and virtual interaction devices are used to interact with 3D world entities. In this example an unmanned air vehicle (UAV or drone) is controlled by a rifle based control panel. Other methods include gesture, voice, touch, mobile device as well as conventional control methods.
Vehicle Interface Rig
A rig for multiple team members to interact with a wide range of vehicles and cooperating entities such as air and ground robots, command and control, and virtual environment objects. The rig includes highly configurable 'force feedback' driving controls, hand controllers, touch screens, environmental sound system (loud!) and intercom.
Survivability Experiment
(Under Development) Synthetic Environment test of vehicle architecture (topology, function and recovery) against ballistic attack.
Publications: [1] Real-time simulation of a fragmenting explosion for cylindrical warheads: Journal of Defense Modeling and Simulation, JDMS 2020. [2] Real-time calculation of fragment velocity for cylindrical warheads: Defence Technology 2019.
Unmanned Vehicles Modelling
Catalyst SE2 synthetic environment contains an extensive set Unmanned Air and Ground Vehicle (UxV) models. The models can be controlled directly (human in the loop) or autonomously using a wide range of AI/ML approaches.
Electronic Architecture
Electronic architecture has long been a focus of the Catalyst team, with particular interest in experimentation with open standards such as DEFSTAN GVA 23-09.
Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning
We use AI/ML for a wide range of applications, from controlling vehicles within our synthetic environments, to analysing our EEG data from our cognitive load experiments (publication pending). AI/ML is a core focus area.
Electronic Device Prototype - Blood O2 Wearable
We do electronic device prototyping, from generic embedded systems, to mobile device apps and wearables. Working with our global pharma client, we rapidly prototyped this bluetooth low energy blood O2 wearable and partner mobile app to improve quality of life of COPD patients.

Let's Get In Touch!

Ready to progress? Give us a call or send us an email and we will get back to you as soon as possible!


Catalyst Corporation. Sussex Innovation Centre, University of Sussex. BN1 9SB.