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£1 million ERDF and Yorkshire Forward engineering research contract announced

23 April 10

A significant leap forward in engineering excellence is set to take place in Yorkshire following the announcement of European Union investment secured by Huddersfield-based Cummins Turbo Technologies with the University of Bradford.

The £1 million project, has attracted an award of £478,000 from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Yorkshire Forward, and represents a major high technology collaborative business partnership between Cummins and the University which will support the development of the next generation of test methods for turbochargers, a key component in engines worldwide, as manufacturers work to reduce emissions and improve fuel consumption. Currently around 40% of trucks worldwide include a Holset turbocharger, technology that was developed at the Cummins¿ Huddersfield facility. The partnership will enhance the region's technological base and create and protect jobs in the region.

Dr John Allport, Cummins' Project Director, said: "Our successful partnership with the University, coupled with Yorkshire Forward's backing, demonstrates our combined commitment to engineering excellence in the  region. This is supporting the development of talent and capabilities unrivalled elsewhere in the UK with Cummins at the forefront of innovation for turbocharger science and technology applications worldwide."

Kambiz M Ebrahimi, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University, said: "This is an advanced project with the University and Cummins working together at an international level in automotive testing and research innovation; the results generated by this new world-class facility will have direct application globally for improved engine technology and environmental protection."

Simon Hill, Executive, Director of Business for Yorkshire Forward adds: "This investment is a great example of the benefits collaborative working between our knowledge centres and business can bring and will significantly add to the company's engineering offer and to the region's offer as a centre for engineering excellence."

Low-emission legislation worldwide is pushing the operating conditions of the turbocharger to extremes with speeds and temperatures within this critical engine component reaching unprecedented levels.

Cummins aims to improve the design process of its Holset turbochargers by developing the ability to measure and monitor the complex turbine blade vibration modes within a turbocharger during operation. This will allow accurate correlation of advanced simulation methods used to validate new designs. Initial investigations with the University of Bradford's School of Engineering, Design and Technology will focus on adapting existing methodology currently used in the aerospace industry with significant modifications required to reflect the higher speed and frequency domains encountered in turbocharger turbines, as well as addressing the challenge of measurement in the confined space available within the much smaller components.                                                          

The knowledge gained will help in the improvement of the product durability in its application to low emission heavy duty diesel engines and will also enhance the high-technology design and research capabilities in the Yorkshire region.

The grant was awarded through a competitive scheme that is jointly funded by the European Union and Yorkshire Forward through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme which provides targeted financial support to companies in the region that want to accelerate research, development and innovation to build competitiveness and increase enterprise.

23 April 10

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For further information please contact the University of Bradford Press Office on 01274 23 3089/3084.

Out of office hours call 07879 437996. Alternatively, e-mail or fax on (01274) 236280.