New funding available for digital manufacturing and technology
A new £53 million fund has been announced by the Government for UK manufacturing to boost their competitiveness by using digital technology. Projects to improve supply chains and new research centres are among the recipients of the investment and support. Investment Minister Lord Grimstone announced the new drive, which is to be awarded through the Made Smarter programme. Made Smarter is a collaboration between the Government and industry to “support the development and increase use of these emerging technologies”. Among these technological advances are the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), blockchain in supply chains and advanced robotics and smart machines in manufacturing.
One example is the Digital Medicines Manufacturing Research Centre, which aims to create digital supply chains that enable medicines to be supplied on demand and enable clinical trials to operate more flexibly. This investment follows on from the £300 million joint Government and industry funding made available through the Manufacturing Made Smarter Challenge and the £8 million Government funding given to help small and medium sized manufacturers take advantage of industrial digital technology under Government’s Made Smarter Adoption programme.
Additionally, a new Made Smarter Innovation Digital Supply Chain Innovation Hub has been announced. This will seek to develop “breakthrough solutions that create supply chains that are fully connected, resilient and sustainable”.
“Improving productivity and becoming more competitive is not just about sophisticated manufacturing, but also about smarter manufacturing, and we want to make it as easy as possible for companies large and small to make the changes needed”, said Lord Grimstone, Investment Minister.