The NEAA has been a key driver in the development of The Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Advanced Manufacturing (CESAM), working closely with partners Sunderland City Council, leading industry figures and key universities.

Sunderland City Council’s cabinet have given the green light to an ‘early design’ for CESAM at the International Advanced Manufacturing Park (IAMP) next to the Nissan plant, which will see its doors open by December 2019.

CESAM will enable North East based companies to innovate at lower TRL levels by de-risk innovation and overcome key barriers to adoption. It will seek to identify common industry challenges and to pool resource and funding (both private and third party); to form collaborative projects, which access the national research excellence that exists in the catapult network and beyond; and ultimately deliver the best solutions in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Paul Butler, NEAA CEO commented "This is a huge step forward for the industry and wider advanced manufacturing sector as it will enable companies based in the NE to be at the forefront of manufacturing technology and processes – connecting the NE to the research excellence that exists in the UK and overseas."

Longer-term CESAM will seek to be a regional catalyst for key national programmes such as Made Smarter; maximising the support and benefit to the regional economy; and ensuring the region has the skilled workforce to meet the future challenges of industrial digitalisation.