Six £10million research hubs will explore and improve manufacturing techniques, according to Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson.

“Developing innovative manufacturing techniques will help UK industry create new products, explore more business opportunities and ensure the UK becomes more competitive and productive,” he said.

Funded by government through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the hubs will draw together expertise from 17 universities and 200 industrial and academic partners to upgrade the UK’s manufacturing capabilities.

The hubs will be led by Cardiff University, the universities of Huddersfield, Nottingham, Sheffield, Strathclyde and University College London.

The Hubs include:

Future Manufacturing Hub in Targeted Healthcare led by University College London
The hub will work on the manufacturing infrastructure and capabilities needed to enable UK manufacturers to exploit medical precision advances, through new technologies, skilled personnel, IP and spin-outs.

The Future Composites Manufacturing Hub led by the University of Nottingham
The hub will aim to enable a step change in manufacturing with advanced polymer composite materials. It will strive to develop automated manufacturing technologies that deliver components and structures for applications, including aerospace, transportation, construction and energy sectors.

Future Compound Semiconductor Manufacturing Hub led by Cardiff University
The hub will research into large scale compound semiconductor manufacturing and in manufacturing integrated compound semiconductors on silicon. It will also look to exploit the electronic, magnetic, optical and power handling properties of compound semiconductors to generate novel integrated functionality such as sensing, data processing and communication.

Other hubs focus on continuous manufacturing and advanced crystallisation; advanced metrology; and advanced powder processes.