First UK Fraunhofer Centre announced
The first Fraunhofer Centre to be established in the UK will be based at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.
Fraunhofer Gesellschaft, Europe's largest organisation for applied research, is creating the new Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics in a strategic collaboration with the University of Strathclyde. The Centre will be a hub for industry-driven laser research and technology for a variety of sectors including healthcare, security, energy and transport.
At the same time Fraunhofer will establish UK headquarters, Fraunhofer UK Research Ltd., at the University, which will be the umbrella organisation for any additional UK-based research centres in the future.
The Fraunhofer Centre will be based in the University's world-class Technology and Innovation Centre, which was launched in March last year and is transforming the way universities, business and industry collaborate to find solutions to global challenges, create jobs and support the economy.
The new Fraunhofer Centre is funded by Fraunhofer and the University, the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council. The Centre for Applied Photonics is expected to be the model for more Fraunhofer research centres around the UK.
Education Secretary Michael Russell announced the launch of the centre. He said: "Scottish universities are known around the world for their excellence and Glasgow has a global reputation for advanced research and technology. It's great news that this success has helped to attract Fraunhofer to Scotland.
"Building on the links between education and industry is a win-win situation that will benefit our economy. Securing the UK's first Fraunhofer centre is a major achievement for the University of Strathclyde's Technology and Innovation Centre and I look forward to watching this exciting initiative develop."
Professor Jim McDonald, Principal of the University of Strathclyde said: "Fraunhofer Centres pride themselves on research that is geared to industry and societal needs – an ethos that closely mirrors our own work at the University of Strathclyde.
"By working side-by-side with colleagues in business, industry and government, we are finding solutions to global challenges, enhancing industry innovation and competitiveness and supporting the economy.
"Our collaborative approach is also playing a critical role in the development of tomorrow's highly-skilled graduates and next-generation leaders, ensuring our students' education is informed by the very latest research and the needs of global employers.
"It is fitting that the UK's first Fraunhofer Centre is dedicated to lasers, a thriving industry Scotland has excelled in for decades. The plans have already been endorsed by our partners in industry and we look forward to working together to innovate, design and develop the products and services of tomorrow."
The UK headquarters and the Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics will join a growing community of Fraunhofer Centres globally. Fraunhofer has more than 20,000 employees in more than 80 research units in Germany alone, and is establishing Centres throughout Europe, Asia and North America - most recently at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The new Centre will collaborate with this strong Fraunhofer network.
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