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Global technology giant holds UK academic research showcase at new Thames Valley HQ

15:59 29 November in News

Thales and its university partners have given a rare glimpse into the future of technology with its first academic showcase at Reading, displaying new concepts in space propulsion, cyber security, autonomous vehicles, applications of machine learning techniques and advanced materials for new generations of submarine sonar systems.

As a global technology giant, Thales Group invests in long term academic research partnerships with universities across the world to ensure its expertise and customer-focussed technologies remain cutting edge.

Partners from 22 leading UK universities, including Reading University, attended, along with the 43 PhD doctoral students Thales is currently sponsoring. The event was the first time Thales has celebrated its academic partnerships since Prime Minister Theresa May opened its state-of-the-art headquarters and innovation centre at Green Park earlier this year.

Thales UK is involved with a total of more than £160M of Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council-funded research and doctoral training. The Council is the main funding body for engineering and physical sciences research in the UK and provides the vital underpinning funding for industry sponsored research in universities such as was on display at the event.

Green Park promotes Thales’s emphasis on fostering innovation, being one of the company’s five global centres specifically designed to focus on research and technology –spending around £70m annually in the UK in this area.

Matt Ball, Chief Scientist at Thales UK, said: “This is our first academic showcase event for Thales in the UK. It is fitting that we are holding the event at our new Reading headquarters because Green Park is all about innovation and strengthening academic partnerships for the future.  It is positive news both for Thales’ collaboration with universities and for the Thames Valley region.”

We partner with a wide range of academic institutions, research institutes and catapults on many different areas of research that are crucial to the future growth and profitability of our business.”

We held this event to bring together our sponsored PhD scientists and engineers to celebrate the fantastic range of deep research topics that we are engaged in – covering topics as diverse as Advanced Materials, Cyber Security and Satellite Propulsion.”

“We brought everyone together at our new Research, Technology and Innovation Centre as part of a refreshed approach to engaging with our PhD cohort – these projects are essential for us to maintain access to a crucial network of not only highly talented researchers but the full academic capability that supports their research.

“It is access to this world class talent that enables us to maintain a leading position in our future product and service offering to our customers.”

The universities included Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Cranfield, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Imperial College, Leeds, London School of Economics, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Queen’s University Belfast, Reading, Sheffield, Southampton, Strathclyde, Surrey, Ulster, Uni of South Wales and Warwick.