Advanced Composite Materials Facility opened

Greg Clark, Minister of State for Universities, Science and Cities, has opened the University of Southampton's Advanced Composite Materials Facility. The facility, the only of its kind in the UK, will develop and manufacture new and advanced materials for semiconductor electronics, data storage, photonics and energy harvesting, conversion and storage.

One of the first projects will be the development and manufacture of a new form of solid state battery in collaboration with Ilika Technologies, a spin out from the University. This involves the transfer back of experience gained at Ilika in the discovery, optimisation and synthesis of new materials.

Clark said: "The UK is already a world leader in advanced composite materials and today we took our capabilities to a new and exciting level. From consumer electronics to space, these facilities will play an important role in transforming British research into world beating products. Supported by a £3.3million government grant, the opening of this centre at the University of Southampton will ensure the UK continues to lead in this increasingly important industry."

Professor Brian Hayden, Director of the Advanced Composite Materials Laboratory, said: "This is a great example of a virtuous technology and intellectual property cycle between an academic institution and industry, resulting in an ongoing and mutually beneficial relationship. There are now huge opportunities to apply these synthetic and manufacturing methodologies in a wide variety of devices in the electronics and energy sectors."

Graham Pitcher

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