Construction work set to begin on Factory 2050

Construction work set to begin on Factory 2050

17 September 2014

Work is to start this month on the University of Sheffield's £43m Factory 2050
project at the Sheffield Business Park after a contractor was appointed.

Interserve Construction will build the latest development by the university's Advanced
Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing.

It will also be the first building on a new Advanced Manufacturing Campus, which could
result in the university building up to a one million sq. ft. of new research
facilities on the site over the next seven to ten years.

The state-of-the-art research facility aims to be the world's most advanced factory
when completed in 2015.

Factory 2050 will provide the UK's first fully reconfigurable assembly and component
manufacturing facility for collaborative research.

It will combine technologies including advanced robotics, flexible automation, unmanned
workspace and off-line programming in virtual environments linked to
plug-and-play robotics.

The European Regional Development Fund and the Higher Education Funding Council for England
have both backed the project, which brings together government, business and
academics to drive innovation vital for the UK economy.

The project will also help to ensure the region’s place at the forefront of global high
value manufacturing. Work will begin on site this month with completion
scheduled for autumn 2015.

John Gittins, Yorkshire divisional director of Interserve, said: "This isn't
just another project for Interserve, it is the opportunity to work on a truly
world class project that will help to ensure the region remains at the
forefront of the advanced manufacturing sector. The building design is unique
and the completed project will provide a superb environment for both
researchers and engineers."

Professor Keith Ridgway, executive dean of the University of Sheffield's AMRC with Boeing
said: "The start on site for Factory 2050 represented an important
milestone in the continuing development of cutting edge technology in the
region.

"Our ambition is for Factory 2050 to be the most advanced factory in the
world."