4 March 2021
New report sets out the scale of opportunity for the Midlands in advanced ceramics
A blueprint setting out the compelling opportunities for the Midlands to position itself as a world leader in advanced ceramics has been launched.
Businesses and academics from across the region have collaborated on the Advanced Ceramics Sector Profile, commissioned by the Midlands Industrial Ceramics Group (MICG) in partnership with the Midlands Engine Observatory.
Highlighting the global opportunities presented in the rapidly growing industry, the 28-page document sets out the fundamental importance of advanced ceramics to the performance of high-tech sectors worldwide.
It also gives an insight into the wealth of knowledge and key strengths already in place across the Midlands, and how the region is uniquely placed to tap into the significant growth opportunities globally.
The Advanced Ceramics Sector Profile has been compiled by City-REDI and builds on an industrial consultation completed by themselves and SQW in 2020, which revealed that no other UK region has the equivalent mass of advanced ceramics specialist suppliers, end users and researchers.
Sir John Peace, Chairman, Midlands Engine, said: “The Midlands, and in particular North Staffordshire, has always been synonymous with excellence and innovation in ceramics.
“As industry, across a range of sectors including aviation, medical technologies and space, increasingly turns to the unique properties of these new or advanced ceramics to enhance performance and durability, the Midlands has a leading role to play in accelerating the growth of this cutting-edge technology, both nationally and globally.”
Professor Simon Collinson, Director of City-REDI, added: “Our combined research, which involved in depth consultations with more than 60 industrialist and academics, clearly demonstrates the scale of the opportunity for advanced ceramics and how the Midlands is well placed to benefit from this.
“There is a clear consensus this is a significant opportunity for the UK and that the Midlands is the best placed to drive this forward.”
With members from across blue chip companies and SMEs – including Rolls-Royce, JCB, Morgan Advanced Materials and Lucideon, as well as the universities of Birmingham, Leicester and Loughborough – MICG is an industry led group collaborating to tackle the barriers to expansion the industry faces.
It is also looking to achieve government support to help the Midlands tap into the global opportunities.
Ian Edmonds, of Rolls-Royce, is the chair of MICG. He said: “Advanced ceramics are key to the performance of many of our products.
“By working collaboratively with industry and universities, we expect to break boundaries with advanced ceramics technology which will boost not only our competitiveness but also that of the Midlands.”
The Advanced Ceramics Sector Profile is available HERE
MICG is also interested in speaking to other businesses and organisations with an interest in advanced ceramics. More details can be found on the website.
Notes to editors
The Midlands Industrial Ceramics Group (MICG):
The Midlands Industrial Ceramics Group (MICG) has been established to ensure advanced ceramics help drive the competitiveness and success of Midlands advanced manufacturing by tackling key innovation challenges.
Advanced ceramics are vital to fulfil the growing need for high performance materials in ever more demanding conditions across a wide variety of manufacturing sectors.
The MICG combines tried-and-trusted industrial and academic expertise to create a unified process for the development and commercialisation of new and enhanced processes and products.
The aims of the MICG are to:
The MICG will drive technological breakthroughs in advanced ceramic materials and their manufacturing processes, leading to the development of lower energy and cost routes for functional and structural advanced ceramics.
Its partners are clear that to continue to compete internationally there is an urgent need to constantly enhance current processes and develop future manufacturing techniques, in the area of advanced ceramics.