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Sophia Taha

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Multi-million pound science institute for Manchester

The North West is to gain a multimillion pound science institute based in Manchester.

The announcement was made by George Osborne as part of his ‘northern powerhouse’ plans.

The research and innovation centre will have commercial links to ensure that new technology and manufacturing progressions are sold to companies in Britain.

The centre will cost £235 million of taxpayers money with negotiations with private investors for extra funding.

The Manchester centre will be supported by satellite centres or ‘spokes’ at the founding partners, comprising the universities of Sheffield, Leeds, Liverpool, Cambridge, Oxford and Imperial College London.

The nuclear materials component of the centre, one of 14 such components, will be supported by facilities at the National Nuclear Laboratory in Cumbria and the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy.

The founding partners’ facilities will be enhanced to a value of £132 million.

Chairman of the City Growth Commission Jim O’Neill, commented that inventions from English university labs were too often sold abroad before the full potential was realised in Britain, according to the Times.

Vice-President and Dean of the University of Manchester’s Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Professor Colin Bailey, said: “The UK has a world-leading research base in advanced materials, which is essential to the long-term well being and growth of all industrial sectors.

“The new Institute, supported by our industrial and academic partners, will provide the opportunity for the UK to stay ahead in this vital area of research and innovation to ensure growth in the national economy, as well as addressing the many global challenges facing society.”

Manchester City Council Leader Sir Richard Leese said: “This is a momentous announcement for Manchester and the UK, which underlines the University of Manchester’s world-class credentials and adds significant momentum to the city’s major role at the leading edge of global advanced material research.

“It’s something for which we have long campaigned.

“The potential for the applications of such materials is vast and they will play a major part in realising the economic potential of Manchester, Greater Manchester and the North as a whole.”

University of Manchester’s President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, said: “This considerable investment in UK science – the largest single funding agreement in our University’s history – is testament to the outstanding research in advanced materials carried out in Manchester and at the new Institute’s partner organisations.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Sophia Taha .

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