Science Central

About Science Central

About Science Central

Science Central is Newcastle's £350 million flagship project bringing together academia, the public sector, communities, business and industry. We aim to create a global centre for urban innovation in the heart of the city.

Newcastle University and Newcastle City Council are developing Science Central through the Science City partnership.

The 24-acre site has been at Newcastle’s industrial heart for 200 years. It was originally the Elswick Colliery and later the production centre for Newcastle Brown Ale. 

The site is transforming into an exemplar of urban sustainability, a ‘living laboratory’ where we will trial innovative urban technologies.

Examples of Newcastle University research projects at Science Central:

Science Central Seedcorn Projects

Virtual 3D model of Science Central

Urban sustainability

The development will include a low carbon energy centre and unique £2 million grid connected energy storage test bed.

It will also include a smart grid network. This will allow the development of new technologies for maximising efficiency, availability and sustainability of energy across the UK power grid. 

The project is capitalising on Newcastle University’s capabilities in:

  • sustainability
  • engineering
  • computing science
  • transport
  • urban planning

It is already attracting key industry partners including Siemens, Red Hat, Northern Powergrid and Northumbrian Water.

The first building on Science Central, The Core, opened for business in November 2014.

Computing science

We are building a £58 million Urban Sciences Building to house the School of Computing Science. It will also contain an Urban Observatory and Decision Theatre.

The Urban Observatory and Decision Theatre allow us to analyse and explore real time data. This means we can improve our understanding of the interaction between our city’s energy, water, transport, waste and digital control systems.

Centre for Doctoral Training in Cloud Computing for Big Data

Cloud Computing will also play a key role in the work carried out at Science Central. 

This is through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Cloud Computing for Big Data. The centre is creating experts in extracting useful information from the vast amounts of data collected from sensors, people and computer applications. 

Big data research projects with multi-billion dollar industry partners Red Hat and Microsoft will also be based at Science Central.

A Cloud Innovation Centre will enable regional businesses and the public sector to better exploit the opportunities created by cloud computing and big data.

Read the press release announcing the investment in EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Cloud Computing for Big Data.

Centre for Doctoral Training in Digital Civics

We are are also working towards addressing the challenges that our cities face through another EPSRC CDT, Digital Civics. This centre will explore how we can use digital technologies to promote public participation in the design and delivery of local services including:

  • education
  • public health
  • city planning

Read the press release describing the Centre for Doctoral Training in Digital Civics.

Further information

 Find out further information about Science Central by watching our new video:

Video: What is Science Central?

Find out more about Science Central by reading Science Central news and viewing our photo gallery