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28 July 2009
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
UK’s aero-engine industry and supply chain boosted by investment in innovative new technology
· Technology Strategy Board and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) work with Rolls-Royce
· Business and academia to work together to help industry remain competitive
Rolls-Royce are set to play centre stage in an investment programme totalling £40m that aims to strengthen the supply chain for the UK’s aero-engine industry and accelerate the development and introduction of low carbon aircraft engine technology. The Research and Development programme will be delivered by the Technology Strategy Board, the non-departmental government body that supports UK business in the development of innovative technology and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).
The programme is called Strategic Affordable Manufacturing in the UK with Leading Environmental Technology (SAMULET).
SAMULET is a collaborative programme between industry and academia led by Rolls-Royce working in a consortium alongside other high profile manufacturers, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and several of the UK’s top universities. The Technology Strategy Board is investing £28.5m in the programme and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), £11.5m. Further support is under discussion with regional bodies. The total cost of the project including industry investment is expected to be around £90m.
Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, Iain Gray said:
“SAMULET aims to ensure that the UK aero-engine industry remains competitive in the face of new 2020 emissions targets for aircraft and that it is in a position to manufacture engines for the next generation of civil aircraft.
“We supported this intervention because we felt that it was essential that new technology advances rapidly enough in the industry to ensure that the UK retains a competitive advantage in this field. Through the supply chain and academic partners, SAMULET also offers exciting opportunities to promote UK high value manufacture more generally.”
Chief Executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Dave Delpy said:
“The application of science and engineering research is vital to help overcome the threat of climate change and sustainable living. This important partnership brings together key stakeholders and provides a strategic focus in the search for new technologies to provide an effective response to emissions targets and maximise energy efficiency.
This collaboration is also an excellent example of how the union of research and industry will develop business, stimulate economic growth and ensure the UK plays a leading role in providing solutions to the challenges of the 21st century”.
SAMULET will focus on productivity and environmental improvements including reductions in raw material usage, efficient advanced manufacturing processes and lower engine fuel consumption. The programme aims will be achieved by developing new technologies and delivering a number of knowledge transfer initiatives, it will be closely linked with the advanced manufacturing research centres (in Sheffield, Glasgow, and Ansty near Coventry) and so strengthen the position of UK aerospace manufacturing and its supply chain.