The University of the West of England (UWE) and the University of Bristol have joined forces to create a partnership that will form Bristol Robotics Laboratories (BRL). The multi-million pound investment will be based at the Bristol Business Park.
“The new complex will become the largest research facility in the UK for advanced robotics. BRL will bring together university and industrial researchers in a wide range of projects. With a critical mass of over 50 researchers, the UK will be in a position to compete internationally with the leaders in this field, such as those in Japan and the States,” said BRL Director, Professor Chris Melhuish from the University of the West of England.
“The UK’s international competitors have been investing in this area for a while. For example, Japan has a major programme which has linked university research with industry, China is investing heavily in the education of a new generation of technologists and the US has a long-term agenda. The challenge for the UK is to build on world-class expertise to create a presence on the world stage,” added Alfred Morris, Vice-Chancellor at UWE.
The project will be funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s Science Research Infrastructure Funding programme and the two universities. The existing labs will be extended and there will be significant investment in new equipment.
Work will start in the new year and BRL is scheduled to open during Autumn 2006.