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Manufacturing research within the energy initiative is carried out across a number of departments and research groups at the University of Cambridge.

Research includes:

  • Carbon Footprint Reduction, un-photocopying, re-using steel and aluminium without melting, reduction of energy demand in paper-making using online optimisation and control, and monitoring and control of emissions in industrial processes using sensors.
  • Energy Efficient Industrial Processes, including hydrogen based low-energy methods for metal production and metal reclamation, novel reduction of metal oxides & electro-deoxidation for solar-grade silicon.
  • Recycling, including microwave heating and pyrolysis to process carbon-intensive forms of waste in more environmentally friendly ways; treatment of printed circuit boards to reclaim the components and all the metals; and an environmentally friendly way of recycling lead acid batteries.
  • Industrial sustainability, research into ways to enable industry and manufacturing to become more sustainable.


Some key centres and initiatives include:


We collaborate with industrial partners and are also actively involved in increasing both energy awareness and public understanding of the opportunities and challenges in manufacturing.


Please visit individual faculty profiles to learn more about their research in the Manufacturing theme.  The lead for Manufacturing is .

People specializing in this area

Principal Investigators

Dr. Paul Barker

To engineer novel proteins and polypeptide based assemblies that can be used in  molecular electronic devices and nanotechnology in general.

Dr. Claire Barlow

A wide range of materials and processes, with a particular interest in the inter-relationships between processing parameters, mechanical properties and material microstructures.

Dr. Adam Boies

Our laboratory activities seek to understand aerosol phenomena within complex reacting flows in order to synthesize unique nanomaterial structures. Currently a major research effort within my laboratory is the synthesis of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) from floating nanoparticle catalysts in a continuous high-throughput process for purposes of fibre spinning and mat production. The resulting CNT materials have unique thermal, electrical and structural properties, which are applied to a number of industrial areas. This work is conducted as a part of an international network based at Cambridge known as the Advanced Nanotube Applications and Manufacturing (ANAM) Initiative,

Professor Howard Allaker Chase, ScD FREng

Generation of energy from plastic wastes

Professor John Clarkson, FREng

His research interests are in the general area of engineering design, particularly the development of design methodologies to address specific  design issues, for example, process management, change management, healthcare design and inclusive design

Dr Jonathan Cullen

Jonathan's research interests include whole energy systems, energy and material demand reduction and low-carbon energy technologies.

Professor Steve Evans

He researches and conducts projects with organisations to improve their performance in various dimensions; recent work includes:

  • Sustainable factories
  • Food systems for people with reduced access to food
  • Sustainable city re-generation design
  • Sustainable design and operations for mainstream car manufacturers
  • Cars with water for exhaust that do 300mpg (equivalent).
Professor Derek Fray, FRS, FREng

1.  Examining methods of direct reduction of oxides to produce pure metals and alloys and pure oxygen.

2.  Recycling of metallic wastes including electronic scrap

Professor Matthew Gaunt

The development of new catalytic strategies for chemical synthesis that engage  novel reactivity concepts to enable the rapid generation of architecturally  complex molecules and natural products. One of our key aims is to be able to  construct natural products from simple building blocks in a single step, without  the need for reactivity inducing functional groups and with the ability to  control the stereochemistry.

Professor Lynn Gladden

My group’s primary research interest is in the development of magnetic resonance techniques to study research problems of relevance to chemical engineering. Understanding multi-component adsorption, diffusion, flow and reaction processes is central to designing and optimising processes and products in chemical engineering and biotechnology.

Professor Keith Glover

Control Group within the Information Engineering Division

Professor Bartlomiej Andrzej Glowacki

Efficient ink jet printing of electroceramic materials: Coated conductors YBCO, TiO2, SOFC, Plasma coatings

Professor Bill Jones

Functional (pharmaceutical) molecular solids

Dr. Kevin Knowles

We focus on the relationship between microstructure and the mechanical and  electronic properties of engineering ceramics. In addition to mathematical  modelling, transmission electron microscope techniques are routinely used, as  well as scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, mechanical testing and  electrical characterization.

Professor R. Vasant Kumar

In my group we have research expertise in electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials within an ecological calculus at the cutting edge of new applications.

Professor Steven Victor Ley

The development of new synthesis methods and their application in the construction of  biologically important molecules.

Professor Jan Maciejowski

Model Predictive Control (MPC): Use of online optimisation in real time  to control systems. Current applications include paper-making, spacecraft,  air-traffic management, surface mining, fault-tolerant control. Also building  and maintaining models of dynamic systems, both data-based and  physics-based.

Professor Duncan McFarlane

industrial control & automation,

Dr. Ajith Kumar Parlikad
  • Asset Management
  • Maintenance Engineering
  • Decision-making under Uncertainty
  • Value of Information
  • RFID/Sensors in asset management
Professor Alexander Routh

Research in colloid science and fluid mechanics

Dr. Hugh Shercliff
  • Thermomechanical  process modelling and knowledge management
  • Design  and manufacturing, sustainability and process selection
  • Resources  for materials and design teaching
Dr. Yongjiang Shi
  • Technology Transfer and Manufacturing Mobility
  • Manufacturing Strategy: designing effective manufacturing system
  • International Strategic Alliances (ISAs) and Foreign Market Entry Modes
  • Global Supply Chain and Value Network Management
  • Link Manufacturing Systems of Developing Countries' to the Global Networks
  • Country Characteristics and their Implication to Manufacturing Capability
Dr. Jagjit Singh Srai
  • Supply chain mapping and value chain analysis
  • Operations integration of  multi-organisational manufacturing and service networks
  • Development of  new forms of supply network that support emerging industries
Dr. Andrew Wheatley

Understanding the structure, synthesis and reactivity of mixed-metal  organometallic compounds and nanocatalysts

Professor Ian Wilson

Improving efficiency of heat transfer in industrial and smaller scale processes, including fouling mitigation

Cleaning of solid and membrane surfaces

Heat transfer and drying with food and other micro-structured products

Professor Andy Woods

the dynamics of explosive volcanic systems: both subsurface and atmospheric  processes associated with such volcanism, and the related topic of two phase  flow in pipelines