The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN) has helped the University of Birmingham to secure a number of projects with luxury sports car manufacturer, Aston Martin, following attendance at one of the NanoKTN’s HiPerNano conferences.
An initial project through the advanced materials programme, part of the Science City Research Alliance initiative, looked at the company’s paint processes and identified areas for improvement.
The project led to further work with the interactive multimedia systems group in the University’s school of electronic, electrical and computer engineering, which focussed on instrument panel design.
Richard Simpson, business engagement manager at Birmingham University, said: “We attended the NanoKTN’s HiPerNano event in 2010 at Cranfield and met with Ian Minards, director of product development at Aston Martin.”
“We provide direct help to businesses in the region allowing them exclusive access to specialised state-of-the-art scientific equipment and to the university’s research expertise.
"This direct contact with the university and access to ground-breaking equipment will enable companies to take forward the research and translate it into commercial outputs or use it to optimise their manufacturing processes,” he added.
Aston Martin is now also a sponsor of the university’s entry in the Formula Student UK competition where a race car is produced by engineering students.
To support this work Aston Martin donated one of its cars to the school of mechanical engineering for the students to use in their research.