On Friday (27th May), Professor Robin Clark, Dean of WMG, at the University of Warwick, was pleased to welcome representatives from the Zambian Government.
A total of five delegates led by the Minister of Education, Hon. Douglas Siakalima, enjoyed a tour of WMG’s world-class research and education facilities. Mr Siakalima was joined by Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education, Joel Kamoko; Director at the National Science Centre at the Ministry of Education, Dr Benson Banda; Director at the British Council Zambia, David Pardoe; and Acting Zambian High Commissioner to the UK, Patricia Chanda.
The tour began in the International Manufacturing Centre (IMC) where the guests had a chance to see student engineering projects, before Professor Paul Jennings, Pro-Dean (Research) introduced WMG’s 3xD Simulator for Intelligent Vehicles – the world's first immersive, simulated environment for smart and connected vehicles.
The delegation was then given a guided tour of the Degree Apprenticeship Centre, by Professor Robin Clark. The new Centre helps to bridge the skills gap by providing apprentices with the opportunity to study on degree programmes to develop the skills needed by advanced engineering and manufacturing companies.
Professor Robin Clark, Dean of WMG, said: “It was an honour to meet Mr Siakalima and his colleagues, and to demonstrate how we are helping to drive technology, engineering and manufacturing forward through impactful research and innovative approaches to education.
“The ability of an organisation to equip its workforce with relevant skills will largely determine how well it responds to rapidly evolving requirements. By welcoming the Zambian Government, we were able to share best practices around skills provisions with a view to maximising societal, economic and environmental opportunity for future generations.”
Finally, the delegation visited the Energy Innovation Centre (EIC) where Chief Engineer, Mark Amor-Segan demonstrated the facilities used to research, develop and test the latest technologies at the forefront of energy storage including electric vehicles. Professor James Marco, Head of the Energy Directorate, and Professor Daniel Branch (Co-Academic Director, Africa in the International Relations and Strategy Group at Warwick) also joined the tour and subsequent discussion.
WMG, University of Warwick welcomed members of the Worshipful Company of Engineers to the department to discuss the importance of industry working with academia on research and education. The Company comprises leading engineers, and works to promote and develop all aspects of the science, art and practice of engineering.
Professor Mark Williams, Head of Metrology and Visualisation gave a tour of WMG facilities which focused on the important role of CT scanning in battery technology, criminal forensics, and medicine.
Current winner of the Leete Premium Award, Will Naylor presented his PHD work to the group. Will’s research which has been recognised due to its potential to introduce significant change in manufacturing, investigates methods of capturing, transmitting, and delivering high quality, multisensory, 3D data between remote locations.
Professor Paul Jennings ,Director of Research at WMG who led the visit said: “It was a pleasure to welcome members of the Worshipful Company of Engineers to WMG and give them a real insight into our pioneering research and innovation. The importance of collaboration was a key discussion point throughout the day and Will’s work is a true testament to that – his research is helping engineers to seamlessly work together and share ideas around the world.”
Find out more about WMG’s research here: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/wmg/research/
Delegates from the Slovakian government visited WMG, University of Warwick for an introduction into the department’s ground-breaking battery R&D and a discussion on the importance of industry and academia collaboration.
A total of eight delegates led by State Secretary, Ministry of Economy, Ján Oravec enjoyed a tour of the Energy Innovation Centre (EIC) by Chief Engineer, Mark Amor-Segan who demonstrated EIC’s facilities to research, develop and test the latest technologies at the forefront of energy storage.
Professor Paul Jennings, Director of Research at WMG, University of Warwick who hosted the visit said: “It was great to be able to meet the delegation and showcase the power of academia and industry working together, demonstrating how we are helping to drive the sector forward through impactful research and new education and skills offerings.”
Find out more about WMG’s energy research here: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/wmg/research/energy/
Coventry has taken a bold step to facilitate the development of an independent partnership with local businesses, public and community organisations
To drive forward changes to address Coventry’s impact on climate change and the environment.
Five key themes have been identified by the new Independent Climate Change Board for Coventry, and each is led by influential leaders of key organisations and institutions in the city.
The activities support Coventry by integrating solutions which make an impact on, our people, our neighbourhoods and our environment. They include how we use energy, support wildlife, address inequalities such as fuel poverty, reduce waste and find ways to deal with the effects of climate change like flooding and over-heating.
Chris Lovatt, Chief Operating Officer, UK Solutions for E.ON is the new chair of the Low emission development pathway group. This pathway covers how we reduce pollution and emissions in the city. This could be through promoting renewable energy, more efficient buildings, encouraging sustainable travel as well as reducing and changing the way in which we consume energy overall.
Chris explained: “Coventry is E.ON’s home city so naturally we’re very happy to use our expertise and experiences to support Coventry in becoming a cleaner, greener city and drive forward plans to take action against the climate crisis and create a more sustainable city.”
“At E.ON we work alongside cities, local authorities and with residents to look at how we can help them reduce their energy use, cut their bills and carbon emissions, whether that is by better insulating properties or giving people a better understanding of their energy consumption.
“We are also applying new technologies; installing heat pumps, solar panels, batteries and getting ready for electric vehicles and finding the best ways to electrify our heating and transportation needs, which now make up the majority of emissions across the country.”
Margot James, Executive Chair for WMG at the University of Warwick, and former minister for culture, communications and creative industries, is the chair of the Coventry Climate Change Board.
Margot said: “Coventry’s Climate Change Board is bringing together key city stakeholders to draw up a set of actions that will meet the carbon reduction targets set by the Council. I’m delighted to be joined on the Board by the University of Warwick’s Provost Professor Chris Ennew OBE and Russell Hall, Senior Research Fellow at WMG who will also be leading the Circular Development, pathway group.
“I appreciate very much the excellent support the board is getting from local industry, utilities, public services and the voluntary sector. Together with the citizens of Coventry, I am optimistic that we can bring about real change for the better.
“I’m grateful to have E.ON supporting this important agenda for Coventry and I welcome Chris Lovatt, Chief Operating Officer, UK Solutions at E.ON, who is the first expert leading one of our key areas; the Lower emissions development pathway group. We have also identified the following people; Russ Hall, Ed Green and Geraldine Tsakirakis who will be leading the Circular Development, Nature-based and Equitable and Resilience pathway groups. In the coming months, we will identify further leads all of whom will be experts in their fields.”
The new Climate Change Board met for its second meeting recently. Senior leaders from organisations across Coventry are helping to shape and move forward actions to reduce the impact
of climate change and are meeting regularly to share policies, plans, good practice and work together collaboratively in an effort to keep the city on track for a zero-carbon future.
Margot added: “At WMG we are working with industry to develop solutions that will have a long-term impact on climate change, including electrification of transport from passenger cars to very light rail vehicles, and developing sustainable manufacturing processes.
“I want this Board to make a difference, cutting through any blockages preventing action within and between the organisations we represent, to develop solutions to complex challenges together.”
Cllr Jim O’Boyle, Cabinet Member for Jobs, Regeneration and Climate Change at the Council, added: “It’s great to have experts steering the work of the board and I’m sure that we will be able to share innovative approaches.”
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The University of Warwick was today, 2nd February, pleased to welcome George Freeman MP, Minister for Science, Research and Innovation, to visit the Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Building, home to the National Automotive Innovation Centre, following a visit to the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre.
During his visit Mr Freeman met with researchers from WMG conducting pioneering research into battery innovation, and their integration and control for propulsion and energy applications, and attended a demonstration of WMG’s autonomous vehicle 3DX simulator to learn more about Warwick’s work in the development of new transport technologies.
Mr Freeman’s visit coincides with the publishing of the government’s white paper on Levelling Up.
Commenting on the minister’s visit the University of Warwick’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart Croft, said:
“On the day of the launch of the government’s Levelling Up white paper, it has been a privilege to welcome the Minister for Science, Research and Innovation to Warwick and to highlight some of the many projects the University is undertaking that will support levelling up across our region.
“Through sustainable transport and technologies, life sciences, and as the home of the National Automotive Innovation Centre and as a partner in the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre – Warwick’s contribution to the levelling up work across the West Midlands will be a significant feature of our University’s future, with the energy and drive of our innovation at the fore.”
Commenting on their visit to the University of Warwick Campus and UKBIC, George Freeman MP said:
“It was fantastic to visit the University of Warwick manufacturing cluster, a globally renowned centre for research & innovation in propulsion, battery tech, robotics, and life sciences.
“As part of our mission to Level Up the UK, today we pledged to spend over half the government’s R&D budget outside the South East of England by 2024-25, piloting new Innovation Accelerators to give three regions – including the West Midlands - access to £100 million of new funding.
“This is what Levelling Up looks like in practice - growing the economy while ensuring we can all share in our country’s success.”
Commenting on the minister’s visit to Warwick and the government’s commitment to increase publicly funded research Executive Chair of WMG at the University of Warwick, Margot James, said:
“I am delighted to welcome George Freeman, Science Minister, to WMG today, we are proud that the Minister has chosen WMG at the University of Warwick to showcase his launch of the innovation accelerators. I welcome wholeheartedly the commitment within the Levelling Up white paper to an increase of 40% in publicly funded research across the Midlands.”
Robin Clark, Dean of WMG, University of Warwick add “I'm pleased to see a strong commitment to skills in the Levelling Up White Paper, at WMG, we're keen to help deliver this mission, providing the opportunity for more people to take quality skills courses, from apprenticeships to in-work learning.
Through our new WMG Skills Centre, WMG Degree Apprenticeship Centre and the National Electrification Skills Framework we will be working with employers to develop the skills programmes that are needed by industry and companies to provide these opportunities.”
The £130 million UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) is a pioneering 18,500 square metre state-of-the-art national facility, which has been developed to support UK industry with development of battery technologies for future electrification. UKBIC presents an opportunity for UK technology developers to prove out their innovations and processes by acting as the bridge between new battery chemistries developed in the research laboratories and mass scale production for the automotive market in Gigafactories.
Jeff Pratt, Managing Director of UKIBC said “We were delighted with the Minister’s visit to UKBIC today, in which he spoke about the importance of science and innovation to the UK economy. It was good to discuss with him the importance of realising value from R&D and scaling industrial opportunities - highlighted through facilities such as our own – and to recognise the importance of supporting our growing battery ecosystem across the UK. UKBIC is a key part of the UK Government’s Faraday Battery Challenge, created to fast track the commercialisation of cost-effective, high-performance, durable, safe, low-weight and recyclable batteries.”
The National Automotive Innovation Centre is a partnership between WMG, at the University of Warwick, Jaguar Land Rover, and Tata Motors European Technical Centre. There are over 1,000 designers, engineers and researchers located within the Centre, working on a range of future vehicle and mobility solution projects. Students and apprentices also share the space working alongside staff as our future designers and engineers.
Further to Warwick’s role in developing battery and transport technology, the University is supporting an extensive range of activities to support growth, investment, and regeneration in the West Midlands; including as a Principal Partner of Coventry UK City of Culture 2022, which has to secured £172.6m of investment into the city and over £500m of city regeneration activity. WMG’s new Skills Centre and National Electrification Skills Framework will also support high quality skills development.
On Thursday, (13th February), four leading transportation start-ups visited WMG to learn more about Cyber Security for Automotive, Cooperative Vehicles and Intelligent Vehicles. The companies recently won a start-up competition at the New Mobility Challenge at CoMotion, Los Angeles.
The visit was initiated by the UK’s Science and Innovation Network (SIN) in the USA, who identified Warwick and the West Midlands as a priority for their visit to the UK.
Accompanying the delegation was Matthew Melling, Vice-Consul, Trade & Investment Officer from the UK’s Department for Trade and Investment (DIT), in Los Angeles and Brendan Vickers, North America lead for Innovate UK.
Professor Carsten Maple, Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor (North America) said; “It was a pleasure to host such innovative start-up companies and share our expertise. The group were particularly interested in the tour of our battery facility at the Energy Innovation Centre and to see the Cooperative Vehicle in action. As we refine our strategy for North America, this was a fantastic opportunity to showcase Warwick at its very best with key stakeholders from the region.”
The companies were:
WMG was pleased to welcome visitors from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recently. The visit came on the back of WMG’s Research Office’s engagement with NIST earlier this year.
The NIST is a physical sciences laboratory and a non-regulatory agency of the United States Department of Commerce. Its mission is to promote innovation and industrial competitiveness.
The visitors were welcomed by Professor Carsten Maple, Deputy Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Warwick charged with leading the strategy in North America, and given a tour of WMG’s research facilities.
Finally the visitors were shown WMG’s Forensic Centre for Digital Scanning and 3D printing, where Professor Mark Williams explained more about WMG’s work with West Midlands Police, and the use of digital prototyping tools and techniques to generate forensic evidence to support criminal investigations.
WMG’s research team is looking forward to exploring opportunities for collaborative research with the NIST in the future.
Professor David Mullins, Interim Head of Department (at WMG), was pleased to welcome His Excellency Datuk Mohamad Sadik Kethergany, the Malaysian High Commissioner to Great Britain and Northern Ireland, yesterday (Tuesday 30 July).
Accompanied by University of Warwick Provost Christine Ennew, and WMG’s Director of Client and Business Development, Dr Kogila Balakrishnan, and Business Development Director, Sue Parr, His Excellency was given a tour of WMG’s world-class facilities.
He was especially keen to hear more about WMG’s technology research and collaborative industrial activities including the newly-opened National Automotive Innovation Centre (NAIC).
Professor David Mullins explained: “We were delighted to welcome the new Malaysian High Commissioner His Excellency Datuk Mohamad Sadik Kethergany on his first visit to WMG and the University of Warwick.
“We have had an excellent long and sustained relationship with Malaysia and its key companies and universities. It was very good to be able to show the High Commissioner and his team our research innovations from smart and connected vehicles and digital forensics to energy and electrification. We also had wide-ranging discussions on the importance of industry-engaged education, including Degree Apprenticeships.”
ZGC Group is regarded as China's Silicon Valley centred in Beijing with a network that extends throughout China and internationally, working with over 20,000 high-tech enterprises.
Mr Xuan was an alumnus from the Chiang foundation programme run at WMG in conjunction with the Chinese government in 1994.
The visitors were given an in-depth tour of the Energy Innovation Centre (EIC) and the Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Building by Mark Amor-Segan and Richard Seago, accompanied by Head of China Programmes Steve Raynor.
Mr Xuan commented, “It has been 25 years since I was last here, and much has changed. It is very impressive what WMG have achieved over the last quarter of a century. I am very proud to be a WMG alumnus and the programmes I attended here are still inspiring me in my daily job.” Mr Xuan also expressed his wishes to send a group of senior ZGC group management to WMG in 2020, to attend a tailor-made management course focusing on Risk and Investment Management.
Professor David Mullins responded, “We are very proud to hear that you have found the learning from our programme so beneficial. We have watched the tremendous development at ZGC under the leadership of Mr Xuan. We are delighted to have the opportunity to work closely with ZGC group in the future.”
Today, Acting Head of Department, Professor David Mullins welcomed Sir Vince Cable to WMG.
Professor Mullins explained: "We were delighted to welcome Sir Vince Cable back to WMG at the University of Warwick to see how WMG’s Industry partners are benefitting from WMG's applied research and education programmes.
"As Business Secretary, Sir Vince worked closely with our founder, Professor Lord Bhattacharyya, to develop the UK's Industry and Research base. We were delighted to show Sir Vince how those efforts are making a real difference today, from electric cars to apprenticeships and to do so in the remarkable Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Building.”
Sir Vince also took part in a roundtable discussion, hosted by Professor Mullins, with key executives from WMG and representatives from local SMEs including Charg:gy and Alucast.
Professor Mullins said: "I'm particularly glad that our partners were able to share with Sir Vince the issues and opportunities facing our region's Small and Medium sized businesses as they seek to innovate for future growth."
Sir Vince Cable commented “I was delighted to visit WMG again to see the great work they do with industry and to meet some of the local SMEs. The Prof. Lord Bhattacharyya Building is an absolutely magnificent building and is a proper tribute to Kumar’s contribution to the car industry, to Warwick, and to British Engineering. It is very appropriate that Kumar is recognised publicly in this way."