Manchester X-ray Imaging Facility AMAZEs and wins Queen’s prize

The Queen’s Anniversary PrizeMXIFThe past few weeks have been very exciting for the Manchester X-ray Imaging Facility (MXIF) based at the RCaH. On November 27-29, Over 70 people from across Europe attended the MXIF hosted AMAZE plenary meeting at RCaH, representing over 20 companies including the European Space Agency, BAE, EADS, and Thales". This only a few short days after the announcement, on November 21st, that the University of Manchester, specifically the MXIF had been awarded   “The Queen’s Anniversary Prize” for the exceptional work done ‘New Techniques in X-Ray Imaging of Materials Critical for Power, Transport and Other Key Industries’. 

The Amaze Project:

The Amaze Project led by the European Space Agency, is an FP7 demonstrator project with the goal of putting 3D printed titanium to superalloy components into space craft such as the Mars probe (See Fig.), automobiles, and even Europe’s Fusion reactor at CCFE. 

Related stories:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24528306

http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Human_Spaceflight/Research/3D_printing_for_space_the_additive_revolution

The next concept Mars probe features 3D printed components

The MXIF is awarded the Queens Anniversary Prize:

On November 21, Professor Colin Bailey, Vice President of University of Manchester (UoM) and RCaH Based Professor Lee, Director of Diamond Manchester Collaboration, were invited to St James Palace for the announcement that The University of Manchester had been awarded “The Queen’s Anniversary Prize” for the exceptional work done ‘New Techniques in X-Ray Imaging of Materials Critical for Power, Transport and Other Key Industries’. 

The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes are administered by the Royal Anniversary Trust and presented every two years to reward innovative work of outstanding quality within the higher and further education sector. Activities highlighted in the award include developing training workshops and forming long term collaborations for research into key scientific and technological challenges such as designing 3D printed medical implants and making more energy efficient vehicles.

The University’s President and Vice Chancellor, Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, added: “The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes reward excellence in work of outstanding importance and quality in higher and further education, so this honour is real testament to the cutting-edge research in imaging techniques being carried out here in Manchester.”

In the last 5 years the University has become a world-leader in the development and application of 3D imaging across a range of subjects. UoM is recognized nationally as a place for academic and industry collaboration in materials behaviour and degradation processes, and as an international leader for the extension of the range of time- and length-scales over which 3D x-ray and neutron imaging techniques can be applied. The rapid growth of X-ray imaging facilities across the UK will increase the need for image analysis skills and new reconstruction algorithms and analysis tools, and will require the type of highly skilled interdisciplinary scientists and engineers that are trained by the UoM. Knowledge transfer and access routes to University laboratory facilities is creating demand for the types of complex and dynamic experiments that mean UoM will continue to pioneer new methods to extend the envelope of possibilities even further.

Over the past five years, UoM has used x-ray imaging to impact over 90 companies, 35 UK Universities, and visitors from over 26 countries.  The past two years have seen the development of the MXIF facility at RCAH, which already has had over 350 visitors.