Greg Clark announces £80 million funding for Coventry, Warwickshire and University of Warwick partnership to create new national battery facility
A partnership between WMG, at the University of Warwick, Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, and Coventry City Council has been awarded £80 million to establish a new National Battery Manufacturing Development Facility (NBMDF). The announcement was made by The Rt Hon Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, while attending an energy conference on the University of Warwick campus on Wednesday 29th November 2017.
The new national facility will be established in the Coventry and Warwickshire area by WMG, the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP and Coventry City Council and it will enable UK based companies and researchers to come together to build and maintain a world leading position in manufacturing technologies for batteries and their components in vehicles and transportation. It will provide a crucial new strategic link between the research, development and full-scale industrialisation for battery technologies across the UK.
It will enable effective partnerships between manufacturers, researchers, and economic development leaders, while remaining independent from commercial interests and it will be governed with transparency.
In the run up to Brexit there is even more focus on markets for the UK beyond those in continental Europe, so it is no surprise that the Government of India is partnering with WMG, at the University of Warwick,to help Midlands’ businesses who might be considering working with manufactures in India.
The event, which takes place in the International Digital Laboratory, University of Warwick on Tuesday, 7 November 2017 from 10:00 to 14:00 (GMT) will include an addresses by Consul General of India, The Deputy High Commissioner of India, London, the Access India Programme, and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), London and WMG Chairman Professor Lord Kumar Bhattacharyya.
There will be an informal networking reception where businesses can build connections that could help them do business in and with India.
The event is free and you can register at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/make-in-india-event-warwick-manufacturing-group-tickets-39115073237
Plans for a very light rail service in Coventry moved a step closer today, as researchers from WMG, at the University of Warwick, unveiled early vehicle concept designs to representatives from Coventry City Council.
The project, funded by the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and West Midlands Combined Authority Devolution Deal (which is subject to approval of the business case), is set to better connect the City. This will use a state-of-the-art rail system which will be cheaper, quieter and more environmentally friendly than anything currently available.
Councillors Jim O’Boyle and David Welsh will meet with Dr Nick Mallinson, Dr Darren Hughes and Dr James Winnett from WMG, at the University of Warwick, to showcase the latest plans which have been developed through an initial feasibility study.
Part funded by the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, WMG’s SME group at the University of Warwick has been delivering this internship scheme since 2010, with over 120 businesses so far benefiting from a range of impactful outcomes.
The scheme encourages students studying STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects to consider careers in the manufacturing supply chain. Coupled with this, it supports SME manufacturers to increase productivity by embedding new technologies and processes into their businesses for minimal cost (£2000 per 8-week project).
Secretary of State views work to complete £150 million Centre that will help deliver UK Industrial Strategy
The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, visited WMG, at the University of Warwick, on Friday 20th January 2017, taking up an invitation to see for himself the work underway to complete the new £150 million National Automotive Innovation Centre on the University Campus. He also saw the work expanding WMG’s Energy Innovation Centre which provides a one-stop-shop for the development of new battery chemistries to create advanced batteries for the automotive sector.
The National Automotive Innovation Centre is a unique automotive research centre, and the largest facility of its kind in Europe. It will provide high technology automotive manufacturing research that will be of significant benefit in the delivery of the key manufacturing component of the UK’s Industrial Strategy.
WMG at the University of Warwick are delighted to be part of a £19.4m project to support the development of next-generation electric vehicle batteries in the UK, funded through the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC UK Ltd).
The funding will support leading edge manufacturing research focussed around Nissan's Sunderland battery manufacturing plant - the largest full scale automotive Li-ion battery manufacturing facility in Europe. WMG researchers will play a key role in helping Nissan take forward this opportunity and will receive £1m for the research.
The consortium led by Nissan with WMG at the University of Warwick, Hyperdrive, Newcastle University, and Zero Carbon Futures (ZCF), will bring together engineers, researchers, new technology and existing facilities, assets and knowledge to create and prove new and improved manufacturing processes for the next generation of automotive batteries.
WMG has particular skills around battery chemistry and the manufacturing processes used to scale this up to high volume production. WMG role in the project will be to investigate potential improvements to battery chemistry and increasing manufacturing yield, and to optimise automated manufacturing processes to enable Nissan to remain at the forefront of electric vehicle technology.
The continued success and growth of WMG, at the University of Warwick, now means that it is seeking to hire 120 new recruits over the next 100 days.
WMG is a leading centre for world class education and applied research in many sectors including: automotive, aerospace and defence, business, construction, energy and utilities, IT, security and rail. They have recently won funding for several major research projects and partnerships that builds on our large array of collaborations with new and established partners.
WMG signs MOU with Kulim Technology Park
WMG, at the University of Warwick and Kulim Technology Park have signed a memorandum of understanding for research and education.
The initial focus will be on developing and delivering an educational programme, with a workshop in May to identify skills required for designing and development for manufacuturing processes. There will also be a scoping exercise around potential research projects with the companies who are situated within the technology hub.
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya and Dato Annuar Mohd Saffar, Chairman and Preseident of KTPC signed the MOU, which was witnessed by Dato Sabrina Noor, Kedah State Executive Councillor for Science and technology, IT, telecommunication and high-technology.
Strategic Partnership between WMG and Thermotec Plastics Leads to New Client Offering Worth £1.5 Million
Birmingham based Thermotec Plastics Ltd and WMG at the University of Warwick have worked on a project together to develop a new product offering for the automotive and aerospace markets that is worth £1.5 million in new turnover for the business.
Thermotec Plastics, an innovative and bespoke supplier of engineered solutions in vacuum forming and polyurethane mouldings created a new composite material with impressive lightweight properties and WMG undertook a testing programme that validated the product for market.
The collaboration developed when David Rose, managing director of Thermotec was asked for performance related data for the new composite material by a key automotive client. Thermotec was unable to produce the data in-house as the testing equipment required was investment prohibitive. He therefore approached WMG’s SME Team at the International Institute for Product and Service Innovation who were able to undertake the testing through their funded Innovation Programme for West Midlands SMEs.
More used to testing batteries for transport, including cars, trains and motorsport as it’s Christmas experts were more than happy to help reporter, Anita Rani with a scientific test to understand how a range of different AA batteries available on the high street might perform. The tests were carried out in WMG’s Energy Innovation Centre using the battery characterisation laboratory and part of the £13m Battery Materials Scale-Up Pilot Line.
Mark Amor-Segan, Principal Engineer and Shane Beattie, Technical Manager, for the Battery Scale-up Facility, conducted blind scientific tests on 16 different AA batteries. The batteries came from three different battery chemistry families: i) zinc-chloride, ii) alkaline and iii) lithium. All 16 batteries were tested at a constant current of 500 mA down to 1.1 V. The voltage profile was recorded using a highly accurate battery cycler. All batteries were kept at 20 degrees using a thermal chamber to provide a controlled test environment. For The One Show viewers Anita came armed with 16 toy puppies and fitted each with the 16 different types of batteries. Keeping the puppies in a 20 degree room, the same temperature used to test the batteries, and watched over by a researcher, they were set off to see which would last the longest.