The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) agreement is to develop novel composites for aerospace and is the first project under the broader CAN-UK science, technology and innovation research partnership.

The objective of the complete two phase research project is to develop the analysis methods and manufacturing knowledge required to design and produce optimised curvilinear variable stiffness laminates fabricated by Automated Fibre Placement (AFP) and demonstrate application of the technology on a representative civil aircraft structure.

Professor Keith Ridgway, Executive Dean of the AMRC, said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to work with our academic colleagues in Canada and look forward to a long and fruitful relationship.”

As well as the AMRC and NRC, additional project partners will be required for phase two onwards. Industry partner involvement will ensure the technology and specific applications being developed are directly relevant to near-future aero-structures.

François Cordeau, Vice President of the Transportation and Manufacturing Division of the National Research Council of Canada, said: “Manufacturing makes up nearly half of Canada's aerospace sector. The NRC is excited to work with the global aerospace industry by collaborating with the University of Sheffield on advanced manufacturing methods for cost-effective and environmentally-friendly aircraft.”

It comes as the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and NRC signed a Memorandum of Understanding to facilitate the delivery of collaborative, jointly-funded research and innovation programmes.