Sunday, November 29, 2009

News: Rotherham set for a low carbon future


Thanks to technology on the Advanced Manufacturing Park, Rotherham is well placed to respond to the Government's new Composite Strategy.

Composites are increasingly used for their lightweight, super strength properties in aeroplane wings and racing cars and in the UK Composite Strategy document Lord Mandelson estimates that the high-value composites market is currently worth about £1 billion to the British economy.

The UK offshore composite wind turbine blade and aerospace wing market alone could be worth £22 billion by 2020 - highlighting composites' low carbon credentials.

Last November saw the launch of the £4.5 million AMRC Composite Centre, located on the Advanced Manufacturing Park, a collaboration between the University of Sheffield and Boeing.

The facility provides engineers with the capability to undertake manufacturing research for next-generation civil aircraft, automotive, and off-shore energy.

The Centre works with the National Composites Network to provide expertise in product development and process optimisation to companies that wish to enter the composites industry or to expand their business in the sector.

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson said: "Any modern economy is built on the ability to exploit the opportunities on offer by new and existing high value markets - such as composites.

"Our approach is now to back areas of the economy which have the biggest potential to create wealth and jobs and take advantage of the skills of our people."

The new Composites Strategy explains how Government plans to support British firms involved in manufacturing, utilising and exporting composites and composite technology, with the aim of maintaining the UK's global lead in this growth field.

The strategy will combine with a £22m investment to further advance the development of composite materials. The Government-backed Technology Strategy Board is to manage a unique competition that will see a £5 million prize awarded to British business to develop innovative composite manufacturing techniques for high-performance, high-value products.

AMRC website


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