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Agreement to speed up Unilever R&D process

The UK Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC) Hartree Centre has become Unilever’s global R&D partner for high-performance computing. The agreement will mean quicker product design processes and lead times for Unilever’s innovative new consumer products and provides it with access to the most powerful supercomputer in the UK.

Under the agreement, scientists at STFC’s Hartree Centre will be using their world-leading capabilities in software development and computer simulation to create software tools that could shave months off the development of breakthrough, innovative products across many of Unilever's product ranges.  

These software tools will enable Unilever’s product researchers to run exceptionally fast simulations that will predict how different ingredients in products will interact with each other, and how they can be mixed and processed efficiently, enabling Unilever to develop and improve consumer products using environmentally-friendly manufacturing methods.

Welcoming the announcement, Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said: 'This agreement is a ringing endorsement of the world-leading facilities and expertise at STFC’s Hartree Centre, which alongside industrial and academic partners has recently benefitted from £30 million of new government investment.

'It shows the huge potential of high performance computing to revolutionise the product design process, driving growth and fostering innovation between the research base and industry.'

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