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New £60m automotive facility for Bath

The University of Bath has received significant new government investment to develop the Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | July 12, 2017 | Facilities

The Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS) will be a global centre of excellence, delivering transformational research and innovation into advanced propulsion systems. Located at the Bristol and Bath Science Park, it will lead the development of future generations of ultra-low emission vehicles and attract sector-related businesses to the region, generating economic growth. IAAPS is scheduled to open in early 2020. 

The Institute will exploit the engineering expertise of the University of Bath for the benefit of the UK’s automotive industry. IAAPS will stimulate over £67m in additional automotive research investment by 2025, creating an additional turnover of £800 million for the UK automotive sector and supporting nearly 1,900 new highly productive jobs.

ABOVE: IAAPS will contain spaces such as this Mezzanine for collaborative working

The capital investment of £28.9 million announced earlier this week from the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s (HEFCE) UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF), will enable construction of the £60m IAAPS facility to start in the summer of 2018.

The West of England Combined Authority and Local Enterprise Partnership has also committed support for the project with the allocation of £10m through the Local Growth Fund.

Global companies, including McLaren, Ford, Jaguar Land Rover, Hofer Powertrain and HORIBA Group, as well as more local businesses such as HiETA Technologies, have been key to the success of the IAAPS concept. The support and advocacy of the Automotive Council and the Advanced Propulsion Centre, alongside the support of the University’s Industrial Partners will continue to play a key role as the vision becomes reality.  

Specialist facilities will make IAAPS a centre of excellence for training and skills development in automotive engineering, supporting new Apprenticeships, Honours Degrees, Masters and Doctoral courses, helping to address the engineering skills shortage facing the UK automotive sector.

ABOVE: IAAPS will also support the development of a much larger and more competitive automotive business cluster in the South West by providing access to its state-of-the art facilities to regional start-ups and SMEs

IAAPS will also support the development of a much larger and more competitive automotive business cluster in the South West by providing access to its state-of-the art facilities to regional start-ups and small to medium-sized companies.

Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson said: “Through our Industrial Strategy and £4.7 billion investment for research and development, we're ensuring we capitalise on the great work taking place in universities across the UK and remain at the forefront of innovation.”  

Mark Mathieson, Chief Engineer Powertrain at McLaren Automotive, added: “The window of opportunity to invest in this facility exists now. The Institute will be of great benefit to McLaren’s programmes.”

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