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Driving innovation

20 Hydref 2011

Driving innovation webProfessor Derek Jones (left), Iain Gray (Centre) and Professor Tim Wess

The Chief Executive of the UK’s influential Technology Strategy Board has visited the University as part of a fact-finding visit to learn how Wales is encouraging the development of new technology.

Iain Gray, the Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, the UK government-funded body that supports, promotes and invests in the research and development of technology and innovation met with the University’s Vice-Chancellor to discuss and learn first-hand how the University is supporting innovation.

Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Grant who is also a member of the Technology Strategy Board, said: "I was delighted that Iain was able to take some time out of his busy schedule to visit the University to learn how, as a forward looking University, we are working hard to help promote economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation."

A key part of the itinerary included visting the University’s School of Optometry & Vision Sciences where he was briefed on plans for the University’s Maindy Park research campus; met some of the University’s business partners, and discussed research capabilities and business collaboration in the life science field.

He was also shown the University’s newest research facility, the Morgan-Botti Lightning Laboratory.

The Cardiff School of Engineering facility - named after Rhodri Morgan, former First Minister of Wales, and Dr Jean Botti, European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS) Chief Technical Officer - is the most advanced University based lightning test facility in the UK.

The facility will complement the expertise within the Cardiff School of Engineering’s High Voltage Energy Systems research group, and combined with the practical knowledge of EADS will provide a unique research and testing facility for businesses in Wales involved in composite materials and structures.

Professor Derek Jones, the University’s Director of Business and Strategic Partnerships added: "The opportunity to brief the chief executive of the TSB directly on our work in this area was very welcome.

"Highlighting practical collaboration with companies - not least in the life sciences and engineering - will have given Iain an insight into how the University is working closely with business, so that high quality research can support much needed investment and jobs in the economy."

Related Links

Technology Strategy Board

Research and Commercial Division