The Minister for Business and Industry, Lee Rowley MP, saw the latest technologies enabling modern methods of construction and advanced manufacturing when he visited the Coventry-based Manufacturing Technology Centre.
The minister saw the latest technologies being developed to construct the buildings of the future, in particular schools, hospitals, and prisons, using offsite platform-based construction. Lee Rowley has special responsibility for the construction sector, as well as advanced manufacturing, skills and infrastructure.
The MTC is a key member of the Construction Innovation Hub – a partnership of experts in manufacturing, digital, building performance standards and construction technology to drive innovation and technological advances in the construction and infrastructure sectors.
The Hub brings together the specialist expertise of the MTC, BRE (Building Research Establishment), and the CDBB (University of Cambridge Centre for Digital Built Britain. It is driving the adoption of manufacturing and digital approaches that improve the delivery, resilience and performance of infrastructure. The integrated programme explores how advancing digital and manufacturing approaches and value-based decision-making can improve productivity and economic viability of the sector while increasing its overall resilience for the future.
The minister was also shown the MTC’s work in automation and robotics, laser technology, and electric motor research. He also visited the DRAMA (Digital Reconfigurable Additive Manufacturing Facilities for Aerospace) facility which supports the accelerated uptake of metal powder bed additive manufacturing by the UK aerospace supply chain, where he saw the very latest advances in additive manufacturing.
The minister visited the Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre where engineering apprentices are learning vital skills to become the next generation of engineer.
Lee Rowley said, “I am proud the government is supporting the valuable work being done at the Manufacturing Technology Centre in Coventry, which is helping manufacturers adopt cutting-edge technology and supporting businesses of all sizes to thrive.
“The MTC will help keep the UK at the forefront of innovation by adapting academic theory into practical solutions for industry, empowering companies to compete around the world by implementing the very latest technical know-how.”
MTC’s strategy director Neil Rawlinson said, “It was a pleasure to show the minister our facility and the capabilities that the MTC has. The MTC and our Construction Innovation Hub partners are working to have societal impact that will be felt for years to come.”
The MTC was founded by the University of Birmingham, Loughborough University, the University of Nottingham and TWI Ltd. The MTC’s industrial members include some of the UK’s major global manufacturers.
The MTC aims to provide a competitive environment to bridge the gap between university-based research and the development of innovative manufacturing solutions, in line with the Government’s manufacturing strategy. The MTC is part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, supported by Innovate UK.