Minister of State for Science, Research and Innovation visits Loughborough University

Minister Andrew Griffith MP and Jane Hunt MP receiving a tour of NCCAT

Minister Andrew Griffith MP and Jane Hunt MP receiving a tour of the University's NCCAT facilities

Loughborough University was pleased to welcome Minister of State for Science, Research and Innovation, Andrew Griffith MP, accompanied by Jane Hunt MP, on Monday 5 February. The visit focussed on the University’s hydrogen capabilities and its broader research and innovation activities on climate change and net zero.

Hosted by Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation Professor Dan Parsons, the Minister toured the National Centre for Combustion and Aerothermal Technology (NCCAT) on the Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park – a global open access research and development hub for low-emission gas turbine technologies. There, he highlighted recent work carried out at NCCAT, including the Rolls-Royce-led project with easyJet to develop hydrogen combustion engine technology capable of powering a range of aircraft – an industry first.

Following the tour, the Minister met with a group of senior University leaders, including Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Jennings, and industry partners who outlined their significant ambitions for The Hydrogen Works – a Loughborough-led strategic partnership to create a hydrogen superpower in the East Midlands to help address the challenges to deliver energy security, net zero and reduce Britain’s productivity gap. There was also the opportunity to discuss the University’s extensive climate change and net zero research portfolio – highlighting one of three core themes in its 2030 Strategy, Creating Better Futures. Together.

The Minister has a wide-ranging portfolio and is responsible for the UK’s science and research ecosystem, including university research, as well as public sector research establishments. He also has responsibility for UK Research and Innovation, the non-departmental public body of the Government that directs research and innovation funding.

Welcoming the Minister, the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nick Jennings, said: “We were pleased to welcome Andrew Griffith MP to campus and showcase exemplars of how we work in partnership with industry to accelerate the translation of zero carbon research into high-impact innovations with commercial and policy solutions, that accelerate addressing the climate challenge.”

After visiting Loughborough University, Minister Andrew Griffith MP, said: “Loughborough University's commitment to playing a leading role in sustainable fuels and innovative hydrogen technology is commendable. It was excellent to see firsthand the work of the National Centre for Combustion and Aerothermal Technology and their partnership with Rolls Royce which is a brilliant example of industry collaboration.

“I look forward to continuing to support the initiatives that contribute to a more resilient, sustainable future for the UK.”

Loughborough University Policy Unit

Loughborough University’s Policy Unit provides a channel for the University’s research and researchers to realise productive and beneficial impact on public policy, at local, national and international level through promoting an evidence-based approach to practical on-the-ground projects responding to public policy challenges.

If you’d like to get in contact with the Policy Unit, please email, or call +44 (0)20 3805 1343.

Sandy Robertson Policy Communications Officer