Department takes central role in UK's new Future Manufacturing Hub

The Department is to play a key role in the UK’s new Future Manufacturing Hubs, announced today, Monday 5th December, by the Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, Jo Johnson.

Today’s announcement confirmed a £10million investment from Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) for the University of Sheffield to lead The Manufacture using Advanced Powder Processes (MAPP) Hub. MAPP will focus on developing new powder-based manufacturing processes that provide low energy, low cost and low waste manufacturing routes and products for UK industry.

MAPP, which will be part of the Sir Henry Royce Institute for Materials Research, will play a crucial role in unlocking the potential to use advanced powders in manufacturing processes.

It will be led by Professor Iain Todd, GKN/Royal Academy of Engineering Research Chair and Professor of Metallurgy within the Department.

Head shot of Professor Iain Todd

There is a huge potential for manufacturing using advanced powders, however the industrial application of many processes is being held back by some fundamental science and engineering challenges, and they are not realising their potential. Our vision is to ensure that these game changing technologies deliver on their promise for UK industry.


Today’s announcement also named the University of Sheffield as a key partner in three additional Future Manufacturing Hubs - Advanced Metrology, Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation and Compound Semiconductors. It cements Sheffield’s role in leading advanced manufacturing research in the UK - from developments in fundamental and underpinning science, through to translational research with industry partners.

This investment recognises the vital role new technologies play in the security and growth of our high-value manufacturing sector - which must be a key component in the UK’s industrial strategy.

Around the world, nations are determined to invest in next generation manufacturing and innovation. In the UK, Government is focusing on Industrial Strategy. This announcement is important because it shows how companies can become more productive and globally competitive by integrating the latest research into manufacturing processes.

The future of the UK economy and the creation of wealth, jobs and opportunity will depend upon the UK ensuring that research in universities is working hand in hand with industry. I am extremely proud that The University of Sheffield is an international leader in this vital work.


Further information

MAPP brings together expertise from the Departments of Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Automatic Control and Systems Engineering, and the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, together with partners from the Universities of Leeds, Manchester, Oxford, and Imperial College London. Bringing together 17 industry partners and six centres in the UK’s High Value Manufacturing Catapult, together with academic research, MAPP will develop and translate research into new developments for manufacturers in areas such as aerospace and energy.

The £10m investment in MAPP from EPSRC is matched with over £7m from industry and HVMC partners, and over £3m from universities. For more information on MAPP please visit and Twitter: @mapphub.

For more information on Future Manufacturing Hubs, contact Richard Tibenham, Senior Media Relations Manager at the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council,, mobile: 07767 311 484.