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Precision Engineering Institute

Experts in Precision Engineering

Cranfield University is world recognised for its excellence in precision engineering research, postgraduate training and industrial short course provision. The Precision Engineering Institute is comprised of experienced academic researchers and industrial engineers who specialise in:

  • Precision and ultra precision machine tool design and development
  • High performance and ultra precision machining
  • Micro-engineering
  • Metrology.

We lead two major EPSRC research centres:

We provide doctoral training into the EPSRC Doctoral Training Centre in Ultra Precision. This DTC is operated in partnership with the Institute for Manufacturing at the University of Cambridge. The Centre aims to develop a training and research environment that delivers highly skilled precision engineers to industry.

Our research outputs have made significant impact across many fields of science and industries. The Precision Engineering Institute has:

  • Produced many of the mirrors of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope (the Hubble replacement).
  • Designed, created and operate the world's leading facility producing large ultra precision structured drum tools for reel to reel production of advanced films. Over 24 companies worldwide are using this facility to create their film based products.
  • Produced the science equipment that NPL used to re-define the temperature scale - the Boltzmann constant facility.
  • Designed and built a large scale re-active atom plasma figuring system that can figure correct optics used in Fusion energy research facilities.
  • Produced the large prototype aspherised mirror segments of European Southern Observatory's Extremely Large Telescope.
  • Designed and built a highly compact ultra precision micro-milling machine capable of producing advanced infra-red (IR) optics and watch components.
  • Designed and built an ultra-precision grinding machine for production of free form optics for advanced lithography optics fabrication.


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