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Government funds manufacturing research centres

8th January 2010

The government will invest GBP 70 million in three new state-of-the-art manufacturing research centres to support the development of new products.

Funded through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), a facility at Southampton will specialise in discovering how optical fibres can revolutionise the internet and telecommunications.

A centre in Loughborough will concentrate on regenerative medicine for damaged, diseased or defective tissues and Brunel University's facility will look at how metals can be reused or recycled.

Business secretary Lord Mandelson commented: 'A highly-skilled, innovative manufacturing sector is vital to Britain's future economic growth. This GBP 70 million of government funding will see universities and businesses working together to commercialise academic research.'

Professor David Delpy, chief executive of the EPSRC, added that the developments which will emerge will have a concrete impact on the real world, as they will improve how people communicate, protect the environment and save lives.

A report from manufacturing organisation EEF last month revealed that 14 per cent of manufacturers have shifted their operations from overseas locations to the UK, as the country looks to revive flagging industries and create a new generation of high-tech production facilities.

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