Leverhulme Centre for Functional Material Design launches

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A new research centre that aims to revolutionise the design of new materials has been launched  at an event attended by 150 leaders from the field of materials chemistry.

This £10million Leverhulme Centre for Functional Material Design at the University of Liverpool will drive a design revolution for functional materials by bringing together chemical knowledge with state of the art computer science to develop a new approach to the design of functional materials at the atomic scale.

The computational design of completely new materials from the ‘atoms up’ is currently impossible but the Leverhulme Centre aims to bridge this current design gap by fusing leading-edge synthesis concepts from the physical sciences with ideas from the forefront of computer science, robotics, engineering, interdisciplinary project management and social science.

The launch took place at the University’s Materials Innovation Factory as researchers from academia and industry gathered in Liverpool for a biennial international conference on materials chemistry. Organised by the Royal Society of Chemistry, the 13th International Conference on Materials Chemistry is a flagship showcase for materials chemistry research.

The three-day conference is taking place at the Liverpool arena and Conference Centre attracts the best minds in materials chemistry from the fields of materials design and development.

Professor Andrew Cooper, Director of the new Leverhulme Centre, said: “Liverpool’s Leverhulme Centre addresses the core design challenge facing the development of new materials. We hope that new approaches to materials design will help society to tackle problems such as carbon emissions and clean energy supply.

“It is exciting that Liverpool has been recognised by the Leverhulme Trust as a leader in this critical scientific area.”

Materials Innovation Factory

The new Centre is located in a physical hub in the new Materials Innovation Factory, a unique public/private partnership between the University and Unilever, which offers state of the art equipment, expertise and support for industry and academics alike to advance materials discovery.

The £68million Materials innovation Factory, which is due to be officially opened later this year, forms part of the £2billion Knowledge Quarter scheme in Liverpool.

Liverpool’s Leverhulme Centre is one of four centres funded by the Leverhulme Trust scheme that supports innovative research that has the potential to reshape a field of study.

The Centre also involves partners in the Hartree Centre, Imperial College, the University of Southampton, Diamond Light Source, the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, and the Max Planck Institute for Microstructure Physics.




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