THE Chinese Ambassador to the UK paid a fact-finding visit to three of the University of Huddersfield’s world-leading research centres, each a leader in its own field.
His Excellency Liu Xiaoming is escorted by Professor Dame Xiangqian Jiang
The Centre for Precision Technologies is a centre of excellence for collaborative metrology and its work centres on linking measurement and production together in a unique way. Its projects enable the manufacturing sector to meet the challenges of precision, complexity and quality, whilst minimising costs.
Escorted by the University’s Professor Dame Xiangqian Jiang and Dr Zhen Tong, His Excellency was shown the Centre’s facilities, which are widely acknowledged as being some of the best in Europe. The CPT is internationally recognised in machine tool technology, surface metrology, mathematics for metrology, instrumentation and ultra-precision manufacture.
Professor Jiang explained that the £40 million EPSRC Future Metrology Hub, of which she is the Director, has over 29 industrial partners and through collaboration will help to transform UK manufacturing. The CPT also has strong links with China and currently collaborates with Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Zhejiang University and Huazhong University of Science and Technology.
The University's Emeritus Chancellor Sir Patrick Stewart at the opening of MIAMI-2
The Ambassador was also shown around the University’s Ion Beam Centre and viewed the newly opened £3.5 million Microscope and Ion Accelerator for Materials Investigation, named MIAMI-2.
The MIAMI facilities are a unique group of instruments combining ion irradiation with transmission electron microscopy. The brand new MIAMI-2 is capable of irradiating samples in situ with up to 350 keV ions whilst simultaneously irradiating with up to 20 keV inert gas ions. It is one of only two such facilities of its kind in Europe and one of only five in the world.
The Institute of Railway Research £4.5 m test rig
China is a world leader at the development of high speed rail, so when the country’s ambassador to the UK paid a fact-finding visit to the University of Huddersfield, its Institute of Railway Research was an essential part of his itinerary.
His Excellency Liu Xiaoming was escorted around the Institute’s suite of labs and testing facilities by its Assistant Director, Professor Paul Allen. He explained sector-leading technology such as the Huddersfield Adhesion and Rolling Contact Laboratory Dynamics rig. The rig was installed after the IRR secured £4.5 million from the Regional Growth Fund.
Professor Allen discussed China’s success at installing thousands of kilometres of high speed rail network and he outlined some of the IRR’s research partnerships with leading Chinese institutions.
The Institute has been a key collaborator with the Southwest Jiaotong University – founded in 1896 as a railway research college – that has led to the publication of joint papers covering topics such as high speed rail and wheel profile wear.
The Ambassador also met several of the Chinese-born scientists who are based at the IRR.