George Ord
Bdaily Business News

IIT to join £18m Procter & Gamble development project

Specialist fine grinding technology developed in the North East will play a central role in a new manufacturing collaboration that will look at advanced powder production and processing.

Gateshead-based milling technology company International Innovative Technologies Ltd. is part of an eight-strong consortium brought together by Procter & Gamble Technical Centres to develop new and innovative equipment and processes for the production of super fine powders.

The £18m three year project, named Chariot, is being supported by an £8.85m grant from the Government’s Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative and is being managed by Procter & Gamble’s Newcastle Innovation Centre.

IIT has successfully developed a patented low energy vertical milling system suitable for the fine grinding of a range of bulk materials, powders and minerals.

The company’s involvement in the Chariot project will include further in-depth analysis of the milling of powders and particles, and research into the effects of new and different grinding equipment designs on material properties and performance. In this role, IIT will work alongside the Teesside-based CPI Centre for Process Innovation.

The project has the potential to create up to 20 highly skilled engineering posts at IIT.

Tom Wilkinson, chairman of IIT, said: “This is a highly innovative and prestigious project and we are delighted to be part of this high quality consortium. The project will combine technological innovation with a focus on developing supply chain relationships.

“The aim is to develop long term partnerships and a successful outcome in our own case could lead to considerable new market opportunities for us and the creation of new highly skilled engineering jobs.”

As well as fine grinding technology, other aspects of the Chariot programme will involve specialist work in the complex areas of powder science, including particle size, shape and structure analysis.

Michael Duncan, Procter & Gamble Global Open Innovation director, said: “This project aims to bring exciting possibilities in the area of advanced particle engineering and create new opportunities to supply innovation across several industries.

“Each partner brings key areas of strength and expertise to a challenging project. By working together, we hope to deliver a real breakthrough that will benefit each partner and our global consumers, as well as stimulate local innovation and development.”

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