Laser Prototypes commits to Derry manufacturing research

Professor Eileen-Harkin Jones (Ulster University) joins Tom Walls of Laser Prototypes Europe and Norman Apsley of Catalyst Inc as LPE commits to vital additive manufacturing research with the North West Centre for Advanced Manufacturing research programme

BELFAST-based 3D printing service bureau Laser Prototypes Europe (LPE) is the latest to throw its weight behind a cluster of companies and academic institutions delivering world-leading research projects as part of an advanced manufacturing programme in Derry.

LPE, which for more than 25 years has been providing specialist 3D printing, rapid prototyping and additive manufacturing services, has committed to assist the North West Centre for Advanced Manufacturing' research programme launched by Catalyst Inc and which receives €8.5 million in EU funding.

The company's managing director Tom Walls said: “Working closely with Ulster University, we have helped identify four research projects that address some of the technological barriers that will need to be overcome to enable metal sintering technology to be more quickly adopted by the health & life science industries now and in the future.

"We are delighted to lend our support to this exciting project which will fund four PhD students and four post-doctoral research assistants in the field of additive manufacturing.

“Research in this field has received worldwide attention in recent years due to increased interest in the capabilities and benefits of additive manufacturing technologies from both the public and the government.

"As an expert in these technologies, LPE is committed to helping ensure that Northern Ireland continues to be a global leader in this innovative field of research.”

Professor Eileen Harkin-Jones from Ulster University added: “It's vital universities and industry work together for a wider economic benefit.

"We have previously worked with LPE on a number of research projects and are delighted that they have lent their support to this EU Interrreg programme, which we believe will facilitate some of the most exciting and advanced research currently being undertaken globally in advanced technology solutions.”

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