AMRC: Reducing Silos and Improving Sustainable Outcomes

AMRC explores the ‘language problem’ with digital twins, to reduce silos and improve coordination

The Apollo Protocol: What is it?

Alongside its five partners, the AMRC has launched the ‘Apollo Protocol’. The aim of this protocol is to help different industries communicate more effectively, reduce silos, and improve coordination to drive collaborative and sustainable outcomes.  

“We have built a unique team that brings together the manufacturing, technology and built environment sectors together in a way never seen before. We want to ensure our sectors are being proactive in meeting the challenges ahead of us in terms of climate change and ensuring resilience of products that operate in the built environment,” said Professor Rab Scott, Head of Digital at the AMRC, part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult.

The Current Digital Twins Landscape

Currently, manufacturing and other built environment sectors, like construction, are building their own concepts of digital twins separately. AMRC and its partners, as part of the protocol, aim to investigate the language barriers of different sectors, developing recommendations to increase the interoperability between sectors. 

Partners of the AMRC include: 

  • The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
  • The Construction Leadership Council (CLC)
  • The Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) 
  • techUK 
  • The Alan Turing Institute

“Digital Twins offer huge benefits for society but only a coordinated approach to the language used will allow those benefits to be realised. There are many steps to improving information management – from the manufacturers and their product information and frameworks, to technology companies producing in the Digital Twin space who need the availability of data to construct models. It goes much further than just the manufacturing, built environment and technology industries - policy makers will only meet their sustainability goals if they can provide clarity during procurement for the market to respond effectively so it will take a whole system approach,” said Rick Hartwig, IET Built Environment Lead.

“I’m excited to embark on the next phase of our transformation journey as a sector. Building an internet of twins that integrates seamlessly into our built environment is a challenging but worthy cause. We realise that we cannot do this alone and depend on our digital connections to the manufacturing and technology sectors,” added Neil Thompson, Co-Chair, Built Environment Panel of the IET.

Who is the AMRC?

Founded in 2001, The University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) works with manufacturing companies of any size to drive research and innovation in the industry. 

The organisations specialises in carrying out research in advanced machining, manufacturing and materials, to provide practical uses to the industry. 

“We transform industrial and economic performance by making step changes in productivity, increasing competitiveness, developing new products and processes and training new talent and skills.,” states AMRC. 


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