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Green light for new physical sciences research development

The University’s ambitious plans for advancing physical sciences and engineering have been given the green light.

To be completed by the summer 2020, the £96m development will bring researchers in Chemistry together with colleagues in the School of Computing, School of Physics and Astronomy and Engineering for the first time.

The investment aims to provide an exceptional environment for students, creating state-of-the-art facilities that will rival the best in the UK.

The Bragg Centre for Advanced Functional Materials will be the new home for the University’s internationally-recognised activity in materials characterisation and analysis of soft matter and nanostructured thin films.
It is named after Sir William Henry Bragg, the early 20th century mathematician and physicist who developed X-Ray crystallography at Leeds, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1915 for his work together with his son Sir William Lawrence Bragg.

The Bragg Centre will also be the location for to the University’s research in functional materials and devices, which is part of the UK-wide Henry Royce Institute. This institute brings together world-leading academics from across the UK to study and develop advanced materials, with Leeds’ specialism in Atoms-to-Devices and the translation of new material systems from the atomic scale to operational device.

Professor Steve Scott, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences, said:

“We are creating an exceptional environment to carry out cutting-edge research; the interplay between people, working culture, equipment and buildings will be central to creating the highest quality findings and original ideas.

The quality of our research, brought about through leading facilities and the exceptional breadth of our academic staff will drive external partnerships and attract international support, leading to greater depth in funding bids and a rise in standards of research.”

The University’s undergraduate and thriving postgraduate and postdoctoral communities will benefit, with the investment prioritising world-class teaching and laboratory spaces for research-based learning. The news comes as the University prepares to launch the Leeds Doctoral College, to further support postgraduate researchers.

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