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Houses of Parliament
The British Government is taking a leaf out of the White House's book by investing in 3D printing.
Today (June 6th), Business Secretary Vince Cable announced that UK businesses could benefit from the £14.7 million Downing Street is earmarking into the economy in order to develop 3D printing projects.
A total of £8.4 million from the Technology Strategy Board and Research Councils is being invested into projects that will leverage in an additional £6.3 million in private investment. This cash will help these organisations to develop new manufacturing solutions in 3D printing technology across the industry spectrum.
The Technology Strategy Board has provided funding worth £7.6 million, with additional funding from the Engineering and Physics Research Council, the Economic and Social Research Council and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.
As part of its Industrial Strategy, the Government has committed to supporting cutting-edge technologies that could be seen as too high-risk or resource-intensive for individual companies to nurture to profitability without help.
The projects that are being funded will last between one and three years and will undertake research and development in a variety of different areas.
Dr Cable announced this news during a trip to the Manufacturing Technology Centre in Coventry, which is one of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres of the UK.
He stated: "Investing in tomorrow's technology will bring jobs and economic growth throughout the UK. That's why last month the Government announced the biggest ever investment in the work of the Technology Strategy Board.
"With £440 million of funding they will support new manufacturing techniques to maintain the UK’s position as a world leader in technology and design. This joint investment with the Research Councils highlights the commitment from across the sector to boost manufacturing in the UK."
One project to benefit from this scheme is being led by British additive manufacturing giant Renishaw, which is developing facial implants for patients who may have suffered a head trauma. Another project being led by JRI Orthopaedics will help move work to customise hip replacements forward. Furthermore, FDM Digital Solutions' project will produce customised insoles so they meet the specific needs of a patient's foot.