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Feb 28th, 2013
UK backs laser production with new £5.6M development center
'Industrially focused' effort with 31 industry partners will be co-ordinated by Duncan Hand at Heriot-Watt University.
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Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University is to lead a new £5.6 million multi-site research and development center focused on developing new laser-based production processes for UK industry.

The center, funded by the UK’s Engineering and Physics Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), is part of a wider £21 million investment in four new locations dedicated to different aspects of innovative manufacturing, bringing the total number of centers in the UK to 16 and total funding to £45 million.

The new EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Laser-based Production Processes will feature no fewer than 31 industrial partners, and co-ordinated research from five of the UK’s leading research teams in the field.

Led by Duncan Hand at Heriot-Watt, the center will start operations in October 2013, and will aim to exploit state-of-the-art lasers, including ultrafast and fiber sources, to develop new manufacturing processes at both micro and macro levels.

Two key research themes have been identified: laser precision structuring; and joining and additive processes. Research will extend from the basic science of material behavior modeling and laser-material interaction to manufacturing feasibility studies with the industrial partners.

Another of the newly funded centers, this time focused on large-area electronics, will also feature photonics technologies. Led by Chris Rider at the University of Cambridge, it is aiming to develop new kinds of photovoltaics, lighting, displays, sensing systems and intelligent objects.

To read more: http://optics.org/news/4/2/33



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