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Coventry University launch £50m C-ALPS engine testing facility
5th April 2019

A state-of-the-art facility designed to support the next generation of electric, hybrid and combustion engines has opened at Coventry University.

The £50m Centre for Advanced Low-carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) is a collaboration between the university and global engineering specialist FEV and will house some of the most advanced engine testing facilities in the UK.

The 40,000sqft purpose built space, which has been designed by Broadway Malyan, comprises four specialist test cells, one start-up engine test cell, a dedicated engineering workshop as well as various supporting facilities.

A test monitoring area at the Centre for Advanced Low-carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) at Coventry University, designed by Broadway Malyan

Professor Richard Dashwood, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Coventry University, said: “It’s all about bringing the best of both worlds together, using the expertise and track record of FEV Group in engineering consultancy and combining it with the academic knowledge of our professors to create a real centre of excellence that can attract funding, build capacity in the supply chain and, importantly, offer commercial testing services to car makers.

“Automotive is naturally the first target, but the technology will also be available to support the evolution of other sectors.”

“Automotive is naturally the first target, but the technology will also be available to support the evolution of other sectors.”
Professor Richard Dashwood, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Coventry University

Broadway Malyan worked closely with FEV and the university from the beginning of the project and travelled to Germany to study other FEV facilities to ensure the new test centre met the specific requirements of the project.

Internally the test cells are based around a central corridor that allows a forklift truck to deliver engines from the prep areas direct to the test cell bed. The test cells share a dedicated utility space where all the fuel connections are made outside the cell and a separate control room nearby monitors all the cells remotely. The engines can also be controlled and monitored remotely either by FEV in Germany or by the specific engine suppliers.

Externally, the design incorporates a repeating pattern that conceptually reflects the signal wave generated by an engine in operation, creating visual interest as well as assisting with reducing the visual impact and mass of the building.

The engine preparation area at the Centre for Advanced Low-carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) at Coventry University, designed by Broadway Malyan

Associate Mark Evans, from Broadway Malyan, said: “Coventry University has a strong tradition in transport design and the automotive sector and this important project further enhances the university’s world-class research credentials while building an exciting partnership with the private sector.

“This is the latest in a number of projects we have designed and delivered for Coventry University and we are delighted to be supporting them develop a series of exemplar working environments across a variety of faculties.”

The main contractor on the project were Willmott Dixon and the delivery M&E contractor were NG Bailey.

The facade of the Centre for Advanced Low-carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) at Coventry University, designed by Broadway Malyan

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