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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/P006965/1
Title: Future Continuous Manufacturing and Advanced Crystallisation Research Hub
Principal Investigator: Florence, Professor AJ
Other Investigators:
Price, Professor CJ Litster, Professor JD Benyahia, Dr B
Johnston, Professor BF Roberts, Professor KJ Wilson, Professor CC
Neely, Professor A Schroeder, Professor SLM Markl, Dr D
Smith, Dr R Srai, Dr JS Nordon, Professor A
Sefcik, Professor J Halbert, Professor G Adjiman, Professor CS
Rielly, Professor C ter Horst, Professor J Brown, Dr C
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
AB Sugar (British Sugar Group) Alconbury Weston Ltd AM Technology
Applied Materials AstraZeneca Bayer Pharma AG
Blacktrace Holdings Limited Booth Welsh Britest Limited
Cambridge Reactor Design Ltd Cancer Research UK Centre for Process Innovation CPI (UK)
Clairet Scientific Ltd Croda (Group) DEM Solutions Limited
Diamond Light Source Dr Reddy's Laboratories UK Ltd Encap Drug Delivery
FUJIFILM UK Ltd GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK) Hovione (International)
Infineum UK Ltd Knowledge Transfer Network Ltd Malvern Instruments Ltd
Mars UK Ltd Merck & Co., Inc. (Sharp & Dohme (MSD)) Mettler-Toledo Ltd
National Physical Laboratory NPL NiTech Solutions Ltd Price Waterhouse Coopers LLP
Robinson Brothers Ltd Siemens Siemens Healthineers
Sirius Analytical Instrumentation Ltd Solid Form Solutions Syngenta
Takeda Pharmaceutical International Co, Technobis Crystallization Systems UCB
Department: Inst of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sci
Organisation: University of Strathclyde
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 January 2017 Ends: 30 September 2024 Value (£): 10,864,793
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Complex fluids & soft solids Manufact. Enterprise Ops& Mgmt
Manufacturing Machine & Plant Particle Technology
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing Chemicals
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
14 Jul 2016 Manufacturing Hubs 2016 Interviews Announced
13 Jun 2016 Manufacturing Hubs 2016 Full Sift Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Our Hub research is driven by the societal need to produce medicines and materials for modern living through novel manufacturing processes. The enormous value of the industries manufacturing these high value products is estimated to generate £50 billion p.a. in the UK economy. To ensure international competitiveness for this huge UK industry we must urgently create new approaches for the rapid design of these systems, controlling how molecules self-assemble into small crystals, in order to best formulate and deliver these for patient and customer. We must also develop the engineering tools, process operations and control methods to manufacture these products in a resource-efficient way, while delivering the highest quality materials.

Changing the way in which these materials are made, from what is called "batch" crystallisation (using large volume tanks) to "continuous" crystallisation (a more dynamic, "flowing" process), gives many advantages, including smaller facilities, more efficient use of expensive ingredients such as solvents, reducing energy requirements, capital investment, working capital, minimising risk and variation and, crucially, improving control over the quality and performance of the particles making them more suitable for formulation into final products. The vision is to quickly and reliably design a process to manufacture a given material into the ideal particle using an efficient continuous process, and ensure its effective delivery to the consumer. This will bring precision medicines and other highly customisable projects to market more quickly. An exemplar is the hubs exciting innovation partnership with Cancer Research UK.

Our research will develop robust design procedures for rapid development of new particulate products and innovative processes, integrate crystallisation and formulation to eliminate processing steps and develop reconfiguration strategies for flexible production. This will accelerate innovation towards redistributed manufacturing, more personalisation of products, and manufacturing closer to the patient/customer. We will develop a modular MicroFactory for integrated particle engineering, coupled with a fully integrated, computer-modelling approach to guide the design of processes and materials at molecule, particle and formulation levels. This will help optimise what we call the patient-centric supply chain and provide customisable products. We will make greater use of targeted experimental design, prediction and advanced computer simulation of new formulated materials, to control and optimise the processes to manufacture them.

Our talented team of scientists will use the outstanding capabilities in the award winning £34m CMAC National Facility at Strathclyde and across our 6 leading university spokes (Bath, Cambridge, Imperial, Leeds, Loughborough, Sheffield). This builds on existing foundations independently recognised by global industry as 'exemplary collaboration between industry, academia and government which represents the future of pharmaceutical manufacturing and supply chain R&D framework'.

Our vision will be translated from research into industry through partnership and co-investment of £31m. This includes 10 of world's largest pharmaceutical companies (eg AstraZeneca, GSK), chemicals and food companies (Syngenta, Croda, Mars) and 19 key technology companies (Siemens, 15 SMEs) Together, with innovation spokes eg Catapult (CPI) we aim to provide the UK with the most advanced, integrated capabilities to deliver continuous manufacture, leading to better materials, better value, more sustainable and flexible processes and better health and well-being for the people of the UK and worldwide. CMAC will create future competitive advantage for the UK in medicines manufacturing and chemicals sector and is strongly supported by industry / government bodies, positioning the UK as the investment location choice for future investments in research and manufacturing.

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Organisation Website: http://www.strath.ac.uk