Welcome to the Use Less Group




The Use Less Group is based in the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge and is led by Julian Allwood, Professor of Engineering and the Environment. The group is pursuing world leading research into the sustainable use of materials, energy and resources.

Everything we use involves transforming natural resources into materials. The demand for these materials – for the buildings we inhabit, the vehicles that transport us, the clothes we wear – has skyrocketed. And as demand for materials has increased, so has the impact of their production and use on the environment.

The Use Less Group is looking for practical, implementable ways to use less materials to live well in a more sustainable future. 

Chris Cleaver - Lord of the Rings

PhD student, Chris Cleaver has developed a prototype 12-axis machine for rolling of shaped metal rings. The first of its kind, this ‘Lord of the Rings’ machine was officially launched on 27 June at a function attended by all those involved, as well as senior members of the Engineering Department. The machine is a significant achievement and the first experimental ring rolling mill commissioned in the UK since the 1970s.



The group comprises 20+ researchers and a range of disciplines from engineering to chemistry, economics, geography, environment management and  social sciences.


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Latest news

Professor Allwood and his group hosted the International Conference on Technology of Plasticity at the Department of Engineering in September 2017. With 4 years planning, we welcomed over 600 delegates to a series of fantastic events and an academic programme of over 400 papers. Particular highlights include the spectacular opening lecture at the Cambridge Corn Exchange, hosted by Tony Robinson and the unveiling of the ICTP Peacock- a combination or art and engineering, created by the group and showcasing many metal-forming techniques.