New multi-million-pound AMRICC Centre puts the Midlands at the heart of global advanced ceramics

Date posted: February 22, 2023
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A state-of-the-art facility, developed to help the Midlands secure a global position in the multi-billion-pound international advanced ceramics sector, is launching in the region.

A legacy from the Midlands Industrial Ceramics Group’s (MICG) £18.27 million four-year research programme – funded by Government under UK Research and Innovation’s flagship Strength in Places Fund in 2021 – the new AMRICC centre will enable companies to take innovative ideas and place them on the fast-track into commercial products.

Currently housed in Stone, Staffordshire, with plans to move eventually onto the proposed Advanced Ceramics Campus in North Staffordshire’s Ceramic Valley Enterprise Zone, the facility is currently taking delivery of a wide range of next-generation, high-value equipment, to bring together cutting-edge technology under one roof.

This includes adaptable pilot lines, which offer end-to-end capability through all the steps involved in ceramics and advanced ceramics manufacturing, with users of the facility able to access the technology with the support of on-site technicians and scientists.

The centre will also provide a high-profile environment to train the next generation of material scientists by developing new skills and talent in an industrial setting, in conjunction with key university partners.

AMRICC CEO, Dr Cathryn Hickey, said: “The AMRICC Centre is a landmark project, which will help industry develop, prove, and deploy advanced materials much faster and more effectively to meet changing market needs.

“It will deliver a real competitive advantage for the Midlands and UK economy overall by enabling companies to commercialise new innovation through access to the latest pilot and scale-up capabilities, coupled with the highest level of support to solve key technical challenges.”

Under its remit to provide the ‘go-to centre’ for ceramics commercialisation and give organisations unprecedented opportunities to enter global markets, the facility will operate an open access model, enabling companies to join through membership of the AMRICC Centre, or on a ‘pay-as-you-go’ basis.

Dr Hickey added: “As an open access facility, the AMRICC centre is able to work with companies to trial new products at commercial pilot scale, so helping to de-risk the use of new technologies much quicker.

“The advanced ceramics sector is projected to be worth £143 billion this year globally, and this innovative facility will place the Midlands at the forefront of the industry, with a focus on collaboration, as well as sustainable, net zero outcomes.”

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