Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 263171
Loughborough University

Working with Industry Schools of Engineering

Collaborative research

Loughborough is a research-intensive university, proud of its longstanding commitment to ‘research that matters’. Our diverse and distinctive research strengths are recognised internationally for their high quality and characterised by significant engagement with industry. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, our engineering research was ranked in the UK top 5.

We have an excellent track record in attracting funds for engineering research from the Government’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and we may be able work with you in an exceptionally cost effective manner by such means. In addition to specific project funding, we control EPSRC funds for the Engineering Doctorate Scheme and for Knowledge Transfer which might suit the particular collaboration you have in mind.

We also invest significant funds ourselves in our PhD programmes providing both an opportunity for further collaboration and a supply of very highly skilled engineers for industry. To put the scope for collaboration in perspective, the grants we hold are currently funding around £17m of engineering research each year while our PhD student population is approaching 500.

E.ON and GL Garrad Hassan working with CREST

The UK currently has more offshore wind power than anywhere else in the world. Further rapid growth is expected and the ability to predict and prevent reliability problems at such remote sites is of increasing importance.

Wind turbines

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Professor Phil Eames Director of CREST

Professor Simon Watson from the Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology (CREST) has been working with utility giant E.ON and the world’s largest independent renewable energy consultancy, GL Garrad Hassan, on the strategic monitoring of turbine components to identify bearing, gearbox or generator problems before failures actually occur.

Simon recognises that engaging with industrial partners is vital to developing industry relevant solutions, “We know precisely what their issues are. By pre-empting problems, operators can save money and plan effective maintenance programmes.”

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Collaborating with the CREST team has given E.ON access to the latest developments in wind resource technology and in addition, Loughborough CASE students have consistently made valuable contributions to our onshore and offshore wind energy research programmes.

Quotation mark Dr Dave Pearce Technical Head of Renewables E.ON New Build & Technology

Caterpillar Innovation and Research Centre

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Professor Richard Stobart Centre Director

Professor Colin Garner Research in Applied Thermodynamics

Professor Rui Chen Research in Low Carbon Technologies

Professor Homer Rahnejat Research in Dynamics

The world’s largest maker of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, and industrial gas turbines, Caterpillar works at the forefront of new technology in order to meet its sustainability goals.

For several years, Loughborough research teams have explored pioneering technologies to improve engine and machine performance, delivering exhaust emission reductions and ever more fuel-efficient operation.

The University has recently formalised its long-standing relationship through the creation of the Caterpillar Innovation and Research Centre, the first such agreement in Europe.

The Innovation and Research Centre will expand the joint working relationship between Caterpillar and the University, bringing benefits to both organisations. The aim of the Centre is to facilitate further innovation and technology transfer and to provide Caterpillar with access to Loughborough’s world class researchers and facilities.

Adidas working with the Sports Technology Research Group

Jabulani football in wind tunnel

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Professor Mike Caine Director of the Sports Technology Institute

Our Sports Technology Research Group has an exclusive and established partnership with Adidas. After previously working in partnership with Adidas to research and develop assessment methods for the 2008 European Championship and 2006 World Cup footballs, the Group most recently worked on the “Jabulani,” the Official Match Ball for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™.

The “JABULANI”, which means “to celebrate” in isiZulu, features a South African inspired design and radically new technology. Ground-breaking performance features were confirmed in comprehensive comparison tests and checks in the wind tunnel at Loughborough and the Adidas football laboratory in Scheinfeld, Germany.

Partners for Water and Sanitation working with WEDC

Partners for Water and Sanitation was launched at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002 as a not-for-profit partnership programme to match pro bono expertise provided by the UK water industry to support national staff working in water supply and sanitation in Africa.

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Dr Andrew Cotton Director of WEDC

It was hosted from 2007 to 2010 by Loughborough University’s Water Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC) which provided technical support, co-ordination and quality management to the programme. This included training needs assessment, the selection, briefing and debriefing of UK experts, reporting and knowledge management.

The programme matched African partners’ demands for skills, advice and expertise with professional volunteers from more than 30 partners in the UK water industry who then undertook short capacity-building visits to the country.

Their feedback was very positive: "Perfect match between the required skills and the adviser." (Water Works Design and Supervision Enterprise, Ethiopia). "WEDC briefing provided good grounding information on the country and the work, very useful." (UK water industry expert).

Superskysense: Competitive advantage for the aviation industry

Superskysense is a €2.9 million European Commission project, uniting two academic and eleven industrial partners. Expertise in advanced Chemical Engineering separation technologies has been a crucial factor in this project which aims to deliver an autonomous, onboard system with the capacity to assess the condition of aviation hydraulic fluid and to recondition it as demanded.

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Dr Danish Malik Chemical Engineering Research Coordinator

This will increase the lifetime of the fluid and prevent damage caused by degraded fluid. Ultimately, this will reduce maintenance costs and provide competitive advantage to the industry.

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Loughborough’s contribution has been essential in assessing the viability of an on-board hydraulic fluid reconditioning system. Their extensive expertise, professionalism and unwavering dedication have made Loughborough University a reliable partner and a valuable addition to the team.

Quotation mark Gaby Chaib Business Development Manager Interlab IEC

Specialist support for the construction industry

A team of academics led by Professor Andrew Dainty and Dr Lee Bosher have developed a web-based decision support tool for the construction industry to help mitigate the threats to buildings and critical infrastructure posed by natural and human induced hazards.

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Professor Andrew Dainty Professor of Construction Sociology

Known as PRE-EMPT (Proactive Resilient Engineering and Emergency Mitigation Planning Tool), the service helps to increase the resilience of existing and new build assets, including schools, hospitals, transport facilities and office blocks. It sets out a clear process for tackling disaster risk management considerations during the preconstruction stage, and signposts users to relevant guidance as well as key government and industry contacts.

John Laing, a specialist owner, operator and manager of public sector infrastructure assets in the UK and internationally, is one of the companies benefitting from PRE-EMPT.

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We found the web-based tool extremely useful on a day-to-day basis. We can see the value of our company using PRE-EMPT in future projects and look forward to assisting further with this important research.

Quotation mark Tony Atkinson Technical Services Director John Laing