AMRC to play major role in bid to create a double economic boost for North Wales

Innovation at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing

Welsh Government plans to invest £20 million in a new Advanced Manufacturing & Research Institute have been welcomed by Colin Sirett, chief executive officer of the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

The AMRC has worked with Deeside Enterprise Zone Advisory Board, Swansea University, and Coleg Cambria to develop the new Institute in conjunction with SMEs and large companies.

The Institute will focus on research into and development of advanced manufacturing techniques and production processes for advanced manufacturing sectors including aerospace, automotive, nuclear and food.

It will also address training and skills needs across industry.

The new institute’s impact will go far beyond aerospace, supporting both the automotive and nuclear industries in Wales.

Colin Siret, AMRC CEO

Announcing the investment, during a visit to the Airbus plant at Broughton, North Wales, Welsh Economy Secretary Ken Skates said: “The Institute will deliver game-changing support to key manufacturing companies as well as multi-sector supply chain companies and the broader SMEs economy.

“It is geared to increase productivity, commercialisation, innovation and skills development to ensure a thriving competitive industry base that will be a catalyst for growth and jobs across the supply chain in Deeside, North Wales, the Northern Powerhouse and further afield.”

Airbus will be the anchor tenant for the new Institute, which will incorporate a state-of-the-art research and development facility at the European aircraft manufacturer’s Broughton plant, where it is working with the AMRC to develop new wing production technology as part of the Wing of the Future programme.

AMRC CEO Colin Sirett said: “The £20 million investment by the Welsh Government, combined with the £10 million from the project partners, will give an important boost to the competitiveness of the advanced manufacturing supply chain in Wales.

“The new institute’s impact will go far beyond aerospace, supporting both the automotive and nuclear industries in Wales.

“It also encompasses sectors which have not traditionally been thought of as part of advanced manufacturing, which can, nevertheless, reap major benefits from the new techniques and technologies we will be developing.”

The Institute will operate as a single entity, split between a proposed 4,500 sq m state of the art hub R&D facility in Broughton and a 1000 – 1,500 sq m networking, training, business development and advice facility in close proximity to the Deeside Industrial Park.

The ​Advanced Manufacturing & Research Institute is the latest in a number of collaborations the University's AMRC is involved in around the world, including in Korea, China and the USA.

Additional information

The University of Sheffield

With almost 27,000 of the brightest students from over 140 countries, learning alongside over 1,200 of the best academics from across the globe, the University of Sheffield is one of the world’s leading universities.

A member of the UK’s prestigious Russell Group of leading research-led institutions, Sheffield offers world-class teaching and research excellence across a wide range of disciplines.

Unified by the power of discovery and understanding, staff and students at the university are committed to finding new ways to transform the world we live in.

Sheffield is the only university to feature in The Sunday Times 100 Best Not-For-Profit Organisations to Work For 2016 and was voted number one university in the UK for Student Satisfaction by Times Higher Education in 2014. In the last decade it has won four Queen’s Anniversary Prizes in recognition of the outstanding contribution to the United Kingdom’s intellectual, economic, cultural and social life.

Sheffield has six Nobel Prize winners among former staff and students and its alumni go on to hold positions of great responsibility and influence all over the world, making significant contributions in their chosen fields.

Global research partners and clients include Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Unilever, AstraZeneca, Glaxo SmithKline, Siemens and Airbus, as well as many UK and overseas government agencies and charitable foundations.

Contact

For further information please contact:

Bob Rae
AMRC Communications Manager
University of Sheffield
0114 222 4784
b.rae@amrc.co.uk