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ICT Framework for Low Carbon Domestic Heating

The EPIC research cluster is pleased to announce the commencement of a new EPSRC funded project, "An ICT Framework for Supplementary Electrical Heating for Decarbonisation of Domestic Heating" (EP/M000656/1).

This project will develop technologies which will allow electrical storage heating appliances to optimise consumption of low carbon renewable electricity generation in preference to the use of fossil fuels for some heating.

In the words of Dr David Laverty, principal investigator, "This project aims to address the immediate need for low carbon heating technologies that can be applied today, and will lay out a roadmap for further decarbonisation in the future".

 

EPSRC logo

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Professor Séan McLoone delivers inaugural lecture

Professor Seán McLoone delivered his inaugural lecture, “Energy, Power and Intelligent Control – An EPIC Journey”, at the Ashby Building on 20th November 2014. The audience included staff and research students from across the University as well as external research collaborators of Professor McLoone.

The lecture provided an overview of Professor McLoone’s life, career, and research activities from his early years in County Donegal to the present day.

Following the lecture, refreshments were served at a reception in the Ashby foyer.

 

Professor Seán McLoone/Professor Stan Scott

 

Professor McLoone (left) with Professor Stan Scott, Head of the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

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Professor John Morrow addresses the Northern Ireland Assembly

Professor Morrow (pictured below) was one of a number of invited speakers to address the Northern Ireland Assembly All-Party Group on Science and Technology Energy Storage Seminar on 10th November 2014. 

In his presentation entitled "Sustainable Electricity Supply: Myth Or Reality" John provided a review of the challenges and opportunities for the island of Ireland as we strive to deliver a electricity supply industry that exploits our natural renewable resources and is less reliant on hydrocarbon fuels.

 

John Morrow NI Assembly

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UKACC 2016 to be held in Belfast

 

UKACC logo


The EPIC cluster is pleased to announce that the next United Kingdom Automatic Control Council (UKACC) conference will be held at Queen's University Belfast in August - September 2016.

Members of the EPIC cluster have managed to secure this prestigious biennial control conference which will be held in Northern Ireland for the first time in its 18-year history.

The general scope of the conference is control theory and its applications to a wide range of disciplines including artificial intelligence, robotics, modelling, biomedical engineering, energy and power, image and signal processing, wireless networks, and smart sensors, to name a few.

For further details, please contact the organising committee.

If you have an interest in control theory and applications or if you would like to participate in UKACC 2016 as a proposer/presenter or exhibitor, please contact the Local Organising Chair.

 

Organising Committee


General Chair: Professor Seán McLoone

Programme Chair: Professor Kang Li

Local Organising Chair: Dr Wasif Naeem

International Programme Committee Chair: Professor Sarah Spurgeon

 

Sponsors

Visit Belfast

 

Belfast City Council

 

 

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L‌‌SMS2014 and ICSEE2014 International Conferences

Shanghai conference 2014

 

The 2014 International Conference on Life System Modeling and Simulation (LSMS2014) and 2014 International Conference on Intelligent Computing for Sustainable Energy and Environment (ICSEE2014) were successfully held in Shanghai from the 20th to the 23rd of September 2014. The conferences, which were jointly organised by Queen’s University Belfast and Shanghai University, are a milestone of the iGIVE (Intelligent Grid Interfaced Vehicle Eco-charging) project. iGIVE is one of the four UK-China key research projects in deepening green technology development with over £1 million in grants from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC).

The conference was co-chaired by Professor Kang Li of the EPIC cluster in the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. A total of 572 submissions were received and 220 high-quality papers accepted for presentation. These papers covered 40 topics ranging from the latest advantages in computational methods, artificial intelligence on Life System Modelling and Simulation to recent research on sustainable energy and the environment.

213 researchers from 13 countries and districts gathered together at the Yanchang campus of Shanghai University to share their recent research. These included representatives from China, America, the UK, Germany, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Australia, Denmark, Ireland, Portugal, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. The conference proceedings published by Springer are within the top 25% most downloaded eBooks with more than 90,000 chapter downloads.

The 2014 International Conferences on LSMS & ICSEE provided an excellent communication platform for peer professionals, scholars and engineers. They also provided opportunities for Chinese researchers to follow the latest international developments in computational methods for life system modelling and simulation and sustainable energy and environment. The conferences witnessed fruitful results from researchers and illustrated the importance of system simulation in national economy and defense construction. The success of the conferences has enhanced communication and collaboration nationally and internationally in related areas and brought significant benefits to Chinese researchers.

The "Best Paper" award went to Professor Kang Li's "A Variant Gaussian Process for Short-Term Wind Power Forecasting Based on TLBO", which Professor Li co-authored with EPIC PhD students Juan Yan and Zhile Yang and colleagues from the State Grid Electric Power Research Institute, China. This work is part of the research linked to the current EPSRC project on “Intelligent Grid Interfaced Vehicle Eco” and the £2.3 million Science Bridge project on sustainable energy and environment of which Professor Li is the Co-Investigator.

More information can be found on the iGIVE project website: http://i-give.org.uk

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Legacy Gift Awarded in Dragons' Den Competition

EPIC's Dr Wenping Cao was the winner of a EEECS Dragons' Den competition designed to allocate a legacy gift for research into new sources of energy and power.

Dr Cao is pictured below delivering his pitch on power electronics research before an audience of staff and students.

A full report on the event has been posted on the EEECS website.

 

Dragons' Den competition  

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Valentine’s Speech on Electrical Machines and Drives

In industry, more than 70% of electricity is consumed by electrical motor drives of some kinds. Any significant improvement in energy efficiency wouldn’t be possible without involving electrical machines and power converters.

Dr Wenping Cao, who recently joined the EPIC Cluster, will deliver a technical talk on "Improving Energy Efficiency in Electrical Machines and Drives" on this Valentine’s afternoon, at 2:30pm, Ashby Building Conference Room 07.005. Wenping will spend 30 mins to introduce a romantic story how electrical machines and power converters met and wedded happily ever after through his high-quality work, followed by an extensive discussion on interdisciplinary collaboration and future work.


Sweeties and chocolates will be provided to add to the atmosphere, in addition to teas and coffees.
If you want to join us before meeting your loved ones, please book a seat through Dr Jing Deng.

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IMarEST Most Innovative Research Award for EPIC Researchers

An EPIC PhD student and staff has been awarded the IMarEST most innovative research award at the 4th UK Martime Postgraduate Conference held in University College London in June 2013.


Ms Sable Campbell, a 3rd year DEL*-funded PhD student from the EPIC research cluster presented her research entitled "Intelligent Collision Monitoring and Avoidance Algorithms for Unmanned Maritime Vehicles" at the conference and received a certificate to mark the award. The research focussed on developing intelligent obstacle detection and avoidnace algorithms for unmanned marine vehicles. A unique feature of the research is the automation of standardised collision regulations or 'marine rules of the road' as defined by the International Maritime Organisation.

Co-author, Dr Wasif Naeem who is also Ms Campbell's PhD supervisor and the Principle Investigator of this EPSRC funded project, said that this award shows the world-leading research being carried out within the cluster.

 

Sable_MTPC_2013_2

Ms Campbell (top row, third from the left) is pictured here with other MTPC attendeeds at University College London.

 

* DEL - Department of Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland


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Vacancy - Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader in Smart Grid Technologies
Ref: 13/102715
Energy, Power and Intelligent Control Research Cluster, School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (SEEECS) wishes to make strategic appointments to undertake research in modern power systems and smart-grid technologies in line with the School’s research strategy, to teach undergraduate and postgraduate students across the School, and to contribute to School administration/outreach activity.

The School, which incorporates the Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technologies (ECIT) and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT), has over 50 academic staff delivering higher level education to approximately 1,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students in Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

The Energy Power and Intelligent Control (EPIC) Research Cluster was formed in January 2012 from the merger of the long-standing Electric Power and Energy Systems and the Intelligent Systems and Control research groups at Queen’s University Belfast. The merger brings together expertise in power systems, smart-grid, renewable energy, intelligent systems, system identification, control, virtual reality and robotics to address problems related to distributed sources of energy and their integration into power networks, control and intelligent systems. EPIC is a member of the IET Power Academy, the EPSRC/IET Power Network Research Academy (PNRA) and was an active participant in several of the EPSRC SUPERGEN consortiums. The cluster is a major contributor to all-Ireland energy research initiatives and holds a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Charles Parsons Award. It has strong collaborative links with China and leads the EPSRC funded UK-China Science Bridge, a strategic alliance between Queen’s University Belfast and leading universities and industrial partners in both China and the UK. EPIC has a track record of securing funding at a local, national and international level, multidisciplinary research and industry collaboration. Recent industrial funders of the cluster include: Airtricity, Areva T&D, Caterpillar, NIE, ESB, SSE, National Grid, Premier Power and Airbus.

Currently in an expansion phase, the EPIC cluster is seeking to make Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader appointments to enhance its smart-grid research activities. Applicants with research expertise in one or more of the following areas are strongly encouraged to apply: smart-grid; power electronics; power systems, electrical machines.

EPIC Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/EPIC/.
School Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk/schools/eeecs/.

Informal enquiries may be directed to Professor Seán McLoone, email: s.mcloone@qub.ac.uk or Professor John Morrow, dj.morrow@ee.qub.ac.uk.

For more details, click here.


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Inaugral Lecture - Prof Kang Li

Professor Kang Li from the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science will deliver his inaugural lecture, entitled Data, Intelligent Systems and Control, on Wednesday 24 April at 4.00pm in the Emeleus Lecture Theatre, Physics Building. A reception will take place afterwards in the Senate Room.

 RSVP by Tuesday 16 April to Fionnuala McCrink, Bernard Crossland Building, 028 9097 4669, f.mccrink@qub.ac.uk.


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Invited Lecture by Narendra

Professor Kumpati S. Narendra, the Harold W. Cheel Professor of Electrical Engineering and the Director of the Centre for Systems Science at Yale University will present a Distinguished Scholar Lecture  at the University on Friday 22nd February 2013.  All welcome.

Title: Adaptive Control Using Multiple Models - A new approach

Location: Old Staff Common Room, Lanyon Building, Queen’s University Belfast

Time & Date: Friday 22 February 2013, at 5.00 pm. Tea/Coffee available from 4.30.

Abstract
Adaptive control theory was first developed in the 1960s to deal with the control of linear time-invariant systems with unknown parameters. A large body of literature currently exists in this area. However, in numerous applications when the parameter errors are large, the adaptive methods result in large and oscillatory responses.
 
During the past twenty years, numerous approaches have been proposed to improve the speed, accuracy, and robustness of the response by using multiple models along with “switching” and “switching and tuning”. Both approaches involve numerous models and very little information provided by all the models is used in the generation of control laws.
 
The lecture will discuss a new approach in which all the models cooperate in the decision process. The advantages of the new approach make it particularly attractive for use in situations where the uncertainties are large and/or the parameters vary rapidly with time. The lecture will conclude with brief descriptions of several practical applications.

Speaker's Biography

Kumpati S. Narendra is currently the Harold W. Cheel Professor of Electrical Engineering and the Director of the Centre for Systems Science at Yale University.
 
Education and Professional History:
Professor Narendra received the Ph.D. degree from Harvard University in 1959. From 1961 to 1965 he was an Assistant Professor at Harvard. In 1965, he joined the Department of Engineering and Applied Science at Yale, and was made Professor in 1968. From 1984 to 1987 he was the Chairman of the Electrical Engineering Department, and from 1995 to 1996 he was the Director of the Neuroengineering and Neuroscience Centre at Yale University. In 1995, his alma mater in India, the University of Madras (now Anna University) conferred on him an honorary Doctor of Science degree. In 2007 he received an honorary Doctor of Science degree from the National University of Ireland at Maynooth.
 
Research, Teaching, and Related Activities:
Professor Narendra is the author of over 250 technical articles in systems theory. He is the author of three books and the editor of four others in the areas of stability theory, adaptive control and learning automata. He has served on various national and international committees, and has been a consultant for over 15 industrial research laboratories (including Sikorsky Aircraft, General Motors, and AT&T) during the past 50 years. During this period, 47 doctoral students and over 35 postdoctoral and visiting fellows have done research under his guidance.
 
Honors and Awards:
Professor Narendra has received numerous honours for his work. They include the Franklin V. Taylor Memorial Award of the IEEE, Systems, Man, and Cybernetics Society (1972), the George S. Axelby Best Paper Award of the Control Systems Society (1987), the John R. Ragazzini Education Award of the American Automatic Control Council (AACC) (1990), The IEEE Neural Network Council Best Paper Award (1991), The Bode Prize of the IEEE Control Systems Society (1995), and the Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award of the AACC, “… for Pioneering Contributions to Stability theory, and Adaptive and Learning theory” in 2003. In 2007, he received a Walton Fellowship of the Science Foundation of Ireland, and in 2008 he was awarded the Neural Networks Pioneer Award of the International Computational Intelligent Society.




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Vacancies - Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader in Smart Grid Technologies
Ref: 12/102376
Energy, Power and Intelligent Control Research Cluster, School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (SEEECS) wishes to make strategic appointments to undertake research in modern power systems and smart-grid technologies in line with the School’s research strategy, to teach undergraduate and postgraduate students across the School, and to contribute to School administration/outreach activity.

The School, which incorporates the Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technologies (ECIT) and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT), has over 50 academic staff delivering higher level education to approximately 1,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students in Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

The Energy Power and Intelligent Control (EPIC) Research Cluster was formed in January 2012 from the merger of the long-standing Electric Power and Energy Systems and the Intelligent Systems and Control research groups at Queen’s University Belfast. The merger brings together expertise in power systems, smart-grid, renewable energy, intelligent systems, system identification, control, virtual reality and robotics to address problems related to distributed sources of energy and their integration into power networks, control and intelligent systems. EPIC is a member of the IET Power Academy, the EPSRC/IET Power Network Research Academy (PNRA) and was an active participant in several of the EPSRC SUPERGEN consortiums. The cluster is a major contributor to all-Ireland energy research initiatives and holds a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Charles Parsons Award. It has strong collaborative links with China and leads the EPSRC funded UK-China Science Bridge, a strategic alliance between Queen’s University Belfast and leading universities and industrial partners in both China and the UK. EPIC has a track record of securing funding at a local, national and international level, multidisciplinary research and industry collaboration. Recent industrial funders of the cluster include: Airtricity, Areva T&D, Caterpillar, NIE, ESB, SSE, National Grid, Premier Power and Airbus.

Currently in an expansion phase, the EPIC cluster is seeking to make Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Reader appointments to enhance its smart-grid research activities. Applicants with research expertise in one or more of the following areas are strongly encouraged to apply: smart-grid; power electronics; power systems, electrical machines.

EPIC Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/EPIC/.
School Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk/schools/eeecs/.

Informal enquiries may be directed to Professor Seán McLoone, email: s.mcloone@qub.ac.uk or Professor John Morrow, dj.morrow@ee.qub.ac.uk.


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IET Ambition Awards - Present around the World - 22nd November 2012

Present around the World (PATW) is the IET’s presentation competition for students, recent graduates, apprentices and young professionals aged 18 to 26. Competitors are asked to give a presentation for 10 minutes on a subject related to engineering and technology, and to answer questions for a further five minutes. Ms Sable Campbell from the EPIC cluster will be taking part in this competition.

This year we have three excellent and varied technical presentations.  Details can be found here  . Three judges from local industry will decide who the winner is.  
So do please come along and support our young IET professionals!
 
COMPETITION DATE AND VENUE

Thursday 22nd November
Main Lecture Theatre, Ashy Building, Stranmillis Road, Belfast.
Refreshments served from 6pm, Presentations commence 6.30pm.

This event is free and open to everyone. Pre-registration is not required. For more information visit www.ietni.org


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NIE Safety Training

Prof Morrow, Dr Cregan, Dr Laverty, Dr Best and Mr Brogan have recently passed the NIE D1/D2 Safety Examination to facititate substation access. The group plan is to install Phasor Measurement Units (PMUs) at a number of substations to study system operations with high penetration of renewable generation and investigate smart grid applications. 


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MSc in Sustainable Electrical Energy Systems

The new MSc degree in Sustainable Electrical Energy Systems programme will provide numerate graduates with the requisite knowledge and skills required by the electricity supply industry as it replaces fossil-fuel with renewable power generation.

Click here for details regarding the course including how to apply.


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Past EPIC (Electrical Power) researcher chosen for the US Department of State’s 2012 Women in the Science Hall of Fame program

Wejdan Abu El-Haija with HRH Princess Sumaya and US Ambassador Stuart E. Jones at a reception on Wednesday (Photo courtesy of US embassy)

Wejdan Abu El-Haija, Dean of the King Abdullah II School for Electrical Engineering at Princess Sumaya University for Technology, has been chosen for the US Department of State’s 2012 Women in Science Hall of Fame programme, the US embassy said in a statement issued on Wednesday.


Abu El-Haija, the first female dean of engineering in any university in Jordan, was honoured on Wednesday at a reception at the residence of US Ambassador Stuart E. Jones, attended by HRH Princess Sumaya, guests from the government, academia and civil society, and high school and college students interested in science and technology.


The environment, science, technology and health regional office at the US embassy in Amman launched the program in 2010 to honour outstanding Arab women scientists throughout the Middle East and North Africa region, the statement said.


Twelve women from a variety of scientific disciplines were selected for their professional accomplishments and ability to motivate and inspire young women to pursue scientific careers.
After graduating as the valedictorian of her electrical engineering class at the Jordan University of Science and Technology, Abu El-Haija earned her PhD in electrical machines from Queen’s University of Belfast. She, under the supervision of Dr Colin Tindall, conducted research on finite element design of alternators. Prof D. J. Morrow was the internal examiner for her PhD who still works at Queen’s as a Professor in the field of Electrical Power Engineering.


She has won several awards for her research, including the Hisham Adeeb Hijjawi Applied Science Award in 2004 and the King Abdullah II Design and Development Bureau Award for the Best Design Model in 2008. The University of Jordan Centre for Women's Studies gave her the Award for Academic Women Leaders in 2007.


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IMarEST Denny Medal for Dr W Naeem

IMarEST President, Prof John Carlton and Dr Wasif Naeem
A lecturer from the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (SEEECS) at Queen's University Belfast has retrospectively been awarded the Denny medal for a paper published in the first edition of Institute of Marine Engineering Science and Technology (IMarEST) Journal of Marine Science and Environment in 2004. Dr Naeem received a medal and a certificate from the current IMarEST president, Professor John Carlton at an award ceremony in Trinity House, London in March 2012.
  
The paper entitled "Pure pursuit guidance and model predictive control of an autonomous underwater vehicle for cable/pipeline tracking" proposed a modified form of missile guidance and control system for tracking rather intercepting subsea objects.

Dr Naeem joined Queens University of Belfast in 2007 and is part of the Energy and Intelligent Control Research Cluster (formerly Intelligent Systems and Control) within SEEECS. His primary research involves guidance and control system design for unmanned marine vehicles (UMVs) and is currently developing algorithms to improve the autonomy of UMVs. In 2007, Dr Naeem was awarded the Michael Richey Medal by the Royal Institute of Navigation for his work on autonomous path planning through chemical signatures and was presented the medal by the Duke of Edinburgh.

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Professor George Irwin elected Fellow of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC)

Prof Alberto Isidori, Prof George Irwin and Prof Lennart Ljung

Prof George Irwin was presented with his IFAC Fellows certificate on the occasion of the World Congress in Milan by Professor Alberto Isidori, IFAC President, and Professor Lennart  Ljung, who chaired the selection committee.

 

 

 

 


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Surgical Innovation a finalist in IET Awards

Empedocles in action

Congratulations to Dr Karen Rafferty and Dr Stuart Ferguson whose Virtual Surgical Simulator, Empedocles, has been selected as a finalist in the 2011 IET Innovation Awards, taking place on November 9th in London.

Empedocles is a laparoscopic surgical simulator which was developed to improve the training and assessment of the laparoscopic technique among surgeons in training. Currently Empedocles is a working demonstrator that can respond haptically and visually to user interaction.

The overall goal of this product is to improve patient safety by reducing the need for on patient training by providing surgical teams with the tools required to improve surgical outcomes. Collaboration is ongoing with doctors in the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children. A working prototype has been used in surgical training field trials and work continues on this.


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Distinguished Scholar’s Lecture, Prof Shaoyuan Li

Prof Shaoyuan Li
Royal Academy of Engineering Distinguished Visiting Fellow
Department of Automation
Shanghai Jiao Tong University
China

 Networked Predictive Control for Distributed Large-scale Systems

Abstract

A class of large scale systems, which can be naturally divided into a number of smaller-scale interacting subsystems, are usually controlled using a distributed or decentralized control framework. A novel distributed model predictive control (MPC) is proposed for improving the performance of the entire system. Here each subsystem is controlled by a local MPC and these controllers exchange a reduced set of information with each other within the network. The optimization index of each local MPC considers not only the performance of the corresponding subsystems but also that of its neighbours. The proposed architecture guarantees satisfactory performance under strong interactions among subsystems. A stability analysis is presented for the unconstrained distributed MPC and the provided stability results can be employed for tuning the controller. The application to an accelerated cooling process on a test rig will be discussed for validating the efficacy of the proposed method.

Speaker: Prof Shaoyuan Li

Location: NITC Conference Room A (tea/coffee will be served after the lecture)

Time & Date: 11:30 am, Thursday, August 18 2011

Acknowledgement of Support from

  • Royal Academy of Engineering Distinguished Visiting Fellow Scheme
  • School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, QUB
  • IEEE CC Ireland Chapter, IEEE SMC Ireland Chapter
  • EPSRC Science Bridge project on Sustainable Energy and Built Environment

 

Everyone welcome!

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Double Success for ISAC Academic in China

Prof Professor Luis A. Aguirre from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Brazil (right) and Prof Kaspar Althoefer from King's College London, UK (left) presented Dr Li (middle) with the certificate.

Prof Dianguo Xu (right), Assistant President of Harbin Institute of Technology, presented the Visiting Professorship Certificate to Dr Li (left)

Dr Kang Li of the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, has recently been presented with the Young Author Best Paper Award for work presented at the International Conference on Modelling, Identification and Control (ICMIC 2011), held in Shanghai, China at the end of June 2011. This was co-authored with his PhD student Chamil Abeykoon and colleagues from Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and the University of Bradford. 

The research reported is linked to two projects, an EPSRC one on polymer extrusion, and the £2.3 million Research Councils UK Science Bridge on sustainable energy and environment funded by the and Queen’s.

Dr Li said ‘The focus of this interdisciplinary effort on advanced process control has been to combine high quality research with technology transfer to impact on an energy intensive industrial sector to improve the global competitiveness”.

In recognition of his research excellence in Intelligent Systems and Control, as well as substantial international collaboration initiatives, Dr Li was further recently honoured by Harbin Institute of Technology as a Visiting Professor in July 2011. Prof Irwin, Research Director, Intelligent Systems and Control commented ‘ Dr Li is one of an up-and-coming generation of young researchers at Queens who are rapidly gaining a world-wide reputation’.

 


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