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Liverpool is set to develop a centre focused on discovering new functional materials.
science, engineering & technology news
The University of Liverpool, the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA), and the Merseyside European Objective One programme have pooled investment for the £8.2 million institute.

The centre is planned for applying state-of-the-art techniques to discover materials with applications in energy storage, medicine, consumer products and communications technology.

Accessible to all businesses within Merseyside, it is hoped that the research and knowledge transfer centre will permit small, medium and large businesses across a wide spectrum of sectors to move rapidly into the next generation of materials science.

All participating businesses will have access to technologically advanced research facilities, such as High-Throughput (HT) technology, supported by highly trained staff and a network of academic competence.

HT technology accelerates materials research by producing large numbers of materials and testing them in parallel.

HT technology at the Merseyside fingertips

With HT techniques set to become standard tools in academia and industry over the next few years, the centre will encourage UK businesses to take aspects of the technology in-house by offering training in HT methodology.

Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jon Saunders, said: “This significant investment in Materials Chemistry will ensure the University continues to play a major role in advancing the research capability of the region and in positioning the North West as a world-leading centre for the development of science.”

Director of the Merseyside Objective One programme, Richard Nutter, said: “This sort of groundbreaking science offers enormous potential for the Merseyside economy which is why we are investing in it.

“Not only will it enhance Merseyside’s reputation as a centre of scientific research, it will also create fantastic opportunities for local businesses and exciting career opportunities for local graduates.”

Dr George Baxter, NWDA Director of Science and Innovation, said: “This high-tech manufacturing facility combined with the academic expertise of the University of Liverpool will help England’s North West to pioneer the development and discovery of new materials.

“Working with businesses on the practical application of different materials will help bring new products to the market more quickly, enabling companies in the region to grow and prosper.”

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