Huddersfield Uni receives £1.5m towards research expansion

EPSRC funding will see the development of a Material Institute and recruitment of researchers for Material Science and Engineering doctoral projects

An award of £1.5 million means that a new cohort of highly-qualified experts in materials science and engineering will be trained at the University of Huddersfield, where they will have access to state-of-the-art technology and resources.

Recruitment gets under way now so that successful applicants can begin their supervised doctoral projects in October. Their fees will be paid and they will receive a stipend.

The Government’s Business Secretary, Greg Clark, announced that a select group of UK universities will share in £184 million funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) for the latest round of its Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs).

The University of Huddersfield’s success in earning EPSRC funding – for major projects that include the Future Metrology Hub and the MIAMI ion beam accelerator – means that it has qualified for a boost in the amount it receives under the DTP scheme.

The new, increased award of £1.5 million – which can be supplemented by funding from other sources such as industrial partnerships – means that 12 new and prestigious doctoral studentships can be awarded in 2018, with a further dozen in 2019. They join 11 doctoral researchers whose DTP projects began in 2016 and 2017.

The University’s strategy for the DTP programme is to focus on materials science.  A new Materials Institute is under development, drawing principally on the expertise and facilities of the schools of Computing and Engineering and Applied Sciences.

“Doctoral Training Partnerships have an excellent record of providing universities with funding that supports doctoral students as they undertake ground-breaking research.’

In addition to established resources, the latest equipment available to researchers includes two metal 3D printers, a high resolution XTC scanner, engineering and biological confocal microscopes, plus HPC and data visualisation instrumentation.

In setting out its DTP strategy to the EPSRC, the University of Huddersfield stated that relevant areas would include manufacturing technologies and materials engineering, materials for energy, catalysis, nuclear fission, surface science, biomaterials, plus computational and theoretical chemistry applications.

The University of Huddersfield’s Director of Research and Enterprise, Professor Liz Towns-Andrews, welcomed the latest EPSRC funding.

“It a testament to the excellence of our research and doctoral supervision in some of the most important, relevant and exciting areas of science and technology,” she said.  “Universities, such as Huddersfield, have a key role in the Government’s Industrial Strategy. Doctoral Training Partnerships help to ensure that we will play it to the full.”

When he announced the latest EPSRC funding, Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “Doctoral Training Partnerships have an excellent record of providing universities with funding that supports doctoral students as they undertake ground-breaking research.

“Through our commitment to increasing research and development funding by a further £2.3 billion to 2021/22, we are ensuring that the next generation of engineers and scientists will continue to thrive under our modern and ambitious Industrial Strategy.”