The landmark £89 million Centre is set to transform the way academics collaborate with business, industry and the public sector to bring global competitive advantage to Scotland and the UK. The leading-edge Centre is the home of academics and their industrial partners responding to global challenges in areas such as health, energy, manufacturing and the development of future cities.
The Royal visitors toured the centre, which features:
- The laboratories of the Institute for Energy and Environment – one of the largest university-based electrical power engineering and energy technology research groups in Europe, with a £35 million portfolio of activities in power grids and low carbon energy systems.
- The Weir Advanced Research Centre, where senior Weir engineers work side-by-side with leading engineering academics to develop product solutions and core technologies.
- The Centre for Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation, a leading UK national facility delivering international impact in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals.
- The Institute of Future Cities’ City Observatory – an innovative information system which collects, manages and interprets diverse data related to the urban environment, in order to aid the sustainability of cities nationally and internationally.
- The Department of Physics’ laboratories for research into plasma physics, as well as quantum technologies – a field in which Strathclyde is playing a central role, with potential for establishing the UK’s international leadership.
- Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering laboratories, including the internationally-renowned Centre for Intelligent Dynamic Communications.
- The Centre for Molecular Nanometrology – the first centre of excellence in this area within the Scottish research community – which is creating new methods of diagnosing disease using a combination of nano science and optical measurements.
Professor Sir Jim McDonald, Principal of the University, said: “Today’s formal opening of the Technology and Innovation Centre, by Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, is a defining event for the entire Strathclyde community.
“This is undoubtedly a historic occasion for the institution and we look forward to showing our distinguished visitors how our new Centre represents our commitment to undertaking world-class research and translating its outcomes for maximum benefit to society and the economy.
“The Centre further establishes Strathclyde’s position as the partner of choice for business, industry and the public sector. Our collaborations are opening up exceptional opportunities for students too, with sponsorships, internships and vocational projects to equip them with essential and relevant skills to develop their careers.
“Through the Centre’s deep collaborations, Strathclyde is driving business innovation and growth, creating jobs, and attracting millions of pounds of inward investment to Scotland and the UK. In the spirit of our founding mission as the place of useful learning, work-streams in the Centre are delivering high-impact innovation and shaping technologies to improve human health, transform the energy landscape, set new standards in manufacturing and contribute to the development of future cities.
“Our partners, students and the global community we serve have responded with overwhelming positivity to the incredible opportunities that the Technology and Innovation Centre will open up – both today and for future generations.”
The Centre has attracted support from a wide range of partners and companies including the Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Enterprise, the European Regional Development Fund, SSE, ScottishPower, the Weir Group, GSK, Novartis, AstraZeneca, and Fraunhofer UK.
Lena Wilson, Chief Executive, Scottish Enterprise, said: “The public sector working in partnership with industry and business is at the heart of our best economic development successes in Scotland, and the Technology and Innovation Centre is a brilliant example of this in practice. Focusing on areas where Scotland genuinely has world class expertise like low cost, greener energy, nanoscience and photonics, the Technology and Innovation Centre will help deliver new investment, new jobs and the kind of academic and industrial excellence that is getting Scotland noticed on the world stage.”
Laurence Howells, Chief Executive of the Scottish Funding Council, said: “In Scotland, we have a really strong record of universities and business working together right at the cutting edge of new ideas and new technologies.
“The Technology and Innovation Centre is building on that experience and creating an environment where new partnerships can develop creating exciting opportunities for sharing expertise and ideas. It is also providing great opportunities for postgraduate research students to gain exposure to industry.”
An independent report found the University’s partnerships with business and industry will contribute £1.4 billion to the economy over the next 10 years.
At 26,000 square metres, the nine-storey building has transformed the landscape east of Glasgow’s George Square and is a major milestone in the continuing regeneration of the City. The building has been constructed to exacting BREEAM standards – a mark of Excellence that recognises the Centre’s strong sustainability credentials.
The building is the University’s largest investment in research to date, and is part of a wider £350 million investment in the development of a dynamic, digital campus over 10 years. It houses specialist, shared and flexible laboratory facilities and will support leading academics in bridging the gap between research, technology and commercialisation.
The Centre is also home to world-class conference facilities with a state-of-the-art, tiered auditorium for up to 450 people in various formats; a smaller auditorium with seating for 150; plus eight seminar or break-out rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows. The flexible facilities have already attracted a number of global conferences.
Research groups within the Centre include: Atoms, Beams & Plasmas; Centre for Ultra Engineering; Centre for Microsystems & Photonics; Centre for Excellence in Signal Imaging Processing; Centre for Intelligent Dynamic Communications; Intelligent Lighting Centre; Institute of Photonics; Oil & Gas Institute; EEE: Power and Energy – Micro grid, Demand Side, Power Electronics, HV & Sensors and Autoclave; Future Cities; Strathclyde Zone for Satellite Applications/ Space Catapult; Weir Advanced Research Centre; Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation; BioNanoTechnology; Fraunhofer; and Energy Technology Partnership.