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Cardiff University signs power electronics MoU with CSA Catapult

24 January 2023

Two men shake hands having signed documents on the table in front of them
Martin McHugh (L) and Professor Rudolf Allemann (R) sign MoU during event at the CSA Catapult Innovation Centre

Cardiff University has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Compound Semiconductor Applications (CSA) Catapult.

The MoU will lay the foundations for a long-term partnership to promote research in areas of common strength and create a lasting public impact in Wales, the UK and beyond.

The MoU was signed during an event at the CSA Catapult Innovation Centre by Professor Rudolf Allemann, Cardiff Univeristy’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International and Student Recruitment and Head of the College of Physical Sciences and Engineering and Martin McHugh, CEO of CSA Catapult.

The MoU sets out a framework to develop joint research projects and funding bids, exchange staff, share facilities and equipment, develop teaching initiatives, and create a pipeline of skills and talent.

The collaboration recognises Cardiff University and CSA Catapult’s shared strengths in power electronics—the processing of high voltages and currents to deliver power across several applications from household electronics to electric vehicles, renewable energy and space technology.

Commenting on the signing of the MoU, Professor Rudolf Allemann said: “It was a pleasure to visit the CSA Catapult Innovation Centre to extend our working partnership of nearly five years into its next phase."

The MoU will not only help us maintain our position as European leaders in power electronics via compound semiconductor technologies but further embed collaborative working between our researchers and industry so that we might find solutions to challenges in energy and environment, in our economy and in society.

Professor Rudolf Allemann Pro Vice-Chancellor, International and Student Recruitment and Head of the College of Physical Sciences and Engineering

“Indeed, we particularly look forward to working with CSA Catapult in optimising wide-bandgap semiconductor power electronics from packaging to system integration via smart manufacturing, faster digital design and operation.

“We will also work together on the fundamentals of power electronics such as material and device innovations in our new Translational Research Hub, which, with its bespoke Clean Room, labs and microscopy unit, is dedicated to researching, prototyping and ultimately manufacturing greener CS products directly with industry.”

Martin McHugh, CEO of CSA Catapult, said: “I’m delighted that we’ve signed the MoU and established a formal relationship with Cardiff University. The collaboration builds on our existing relationship and will strengthen our efforts to develop research bids, share expertise and equipment, increase the talent pool of skilled engineers and, most importantly, deliver long-term benefits to the UK economy.

“The field of power electronics is set to play a pivotal role in the UK’s transition towards Net Zero in areas such as electrification and renewable energy, so it’s extremely exciting that we’re able to combine our capabilities with Cardiff University and make a real contribution to tackling these challenges.”

Six men standing in a line posing for a photograph
(L-R) Dr Wenlong Ming, Nick Singh, Professor Jianzhong Wu, Professor Rudolf Allemann, Martin McHugh and Professor Ingo Lüdtke

As members of CSconnected—the world’s first compound semiconductor cluster based in South Wales— Cardiff University and CSA Catapult enter the collaboration on a strong footing having worked very closely together since the establishment of the CSA Catapult in 2018.

Cardiff University is home to state-of-the-art semiconductor equipment, cutting-edge facilities and highly skilled people that enables researchers and industry to work together to turn research into products.

CSA Catapult’s power electronics laboratory is one the most advanced and comprehensive centres in the UK, providing customers with access to some of the most sophisticated tools and equipment overseen by world-class expertise.

Dr Wenlong Ming, Senior Research Fellow at CSA Catapult and Professor Ingo Lüdtke, CSA Catapult Head of Power Electronics, added: “We were delighted to host the visit of Professors Rudolf Allemann and Jianzhong Wu at the CSA Catapult Innovation Centre and jointly develop strategies to further strengthen our partnership in power electronics.”

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