UK-based clean energy venture capital firm CT Investment Partners has backed university spinout Acoustic Sensing Technology with a £650,000 commitment.

VT made the investment via the North West Fund for Energy & Environmental, part of The North West Fund, which is financed jointly by the European Regional Development Fund and the European Investment Bank.

The start–up company has developed a new product which assesses the condition of sewer pipes. This product was developed by a research team at the University of Bradford, led by Professor Kirill Horoshenkov and Professor Simon Tait.

The capital will be used to create and manufacture the technology and sell it to water companies and contractors in developed parts of the world such as Australia, America and parts of Europe.

Michael Bakewell, investment manager at CT Investment Partners, which manages The North West Fund for Energy and Environmental, will join the board of the company as a non-executive director.

Established in 2006, the firm also advises the Carbon Trust on its clean energy venture capital investment activities.

The North West Fund is a substantial evergreen investment fund established to provide debt and equity funding to small and medium sized enterprises based in, or relocating to, the North West of England.

It attempts to address an identified gap in the lending, venture capital and private equity markets, is one of the largest public sector funds of its kind in Europe and the largest in the UK.

The fund is financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) under the European Commission’s Joint European Resources for Micro to Medium Enterprises Initiative – otherwise known as the JEREMIE programme.