UK government invests in energy efficiency research

Posted at November 4, 2012 » By : » Categories : News » Comments Off on UK government invests in energy efficiency research

The UK government is backing research into energy efficiency as part of seven new academia-industry partnerships sharing more than £1 billion.

David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, yesterday announced the winning bids from the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UK RPIF), which now total 14.

The £300 million UK RPIF was set up in 2012 to provide funding for higher education research facilities in universities, which must find at least double the investment amount from private sources.

In total, the 14 successful projects will receive up to £220 million in public funding and leverage over £600 million in private support. A further £80 million will be made available in a new bidding round shortly.

One of those is a £34 million partnership between the University of Nottingham, GlaxoSmithKline and others to support a Centre in Sustainable Chemistry, which will be houses in the pharmaceutical company’s GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry.

The Centre will focus on helping chemistry become more energy and resource efficient and sustainable in the production of drugs, agrochemicals and materials.

Meanwhile, £38 million will go towards the development of an Energy Safety Research Institute, backed by Swansea University, BP and TATA Steel Europe. As well as devoting its efforts to safety issues in the petroleum and chemical processing sectors, the Institute will also look at the deployment and integration of green energy technologies.

Earlier this month, £60 million was awarded to the University of Birmingham and Rolls-Royce for a research centre looking at the high-temperature metallurgy and other processes used to produce turbine blades and other components.

Added to this, a £92 million partnership between the University of Warwick, Jaguar Land Rover and Tata Motors European Technical Centre will support the development of new technologies to reduce dependency on fossil fuels.

“The winning projects will tackle the key issues we face – like… ensuring energy efficiency and improving infrastructure – for the benefit of all,” commented Willetts.

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Related stories:
New £20 million fund to spark UK interest in energy storage (21-Sept)
UK government kick starts £13 million electric vehicle battery RD centre (6-Sept)

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