SOUTHAMPTON’S engineers and scientists of tomorrow have been awarded £3 million for training to modernise the UK’s essential transport, water and energy networks.

Cash was given to the University of Southampton enabling it to equip postgraduate engineering students with the skills needed to ensure Britain leads the world in high-tech infrastructure research, construction and management.

Starting this September, 50 students at the university’s Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Infrastructure Systems will be funded for four years allowing them discover new ways for the nation to deliver vital resources.

The cash comes from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), and allows students and the university to forge lasting links with industry.

Professor William Powrie, dean of engineering and the environment and director of the centre, said: “We are delighted that the council has recognised the ground-breaking work on essential infrastructure being carried out at Southampton in this way.

“The centre will enable us to educate and train, in collaboration with our industry partners, a new generation of engineers and scientists with the technical skills, knowledge and confidence needed to provide the UK with sustainable and resilient infrastructure systems, now and into the future.”

Research carried out will be aimed at looking at how infrastructure adapts to the effects of climate change, more intensive use and the smart maintenance and upgrade of existing networks.

It will also look into the cost-effective design and construction of new infrastructure.

The work is currently supported by a number of |national and international industry partners including Network Rail, Mott MacDonald, National Grid, RWE Power, EDF, SSE, Thames Water, Southern Water and HS2.