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JustRate is a Big Idea.

the winning team
At the back - Seamus Moore, Jonathan Cleland, Aoife McEvoy and Paul Higgins to the left At the side - Gemma Mulhern, Ryan McIntyre At Front - Lynee Weir, Kirsty Downey, Judith Maguire (holding the cheque)

Students from The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science have won an award in the recent Enterprise SU ‘What’s the big idea?’ awards.

Seamus Moore, Jonathan Cleland, Aoife McEvoy, Paul Higgins, Gemma Mulhern, Ryan McIntyre, Kirsty Downey. from the Business Information Technology pathway,  collectively known as JustRate won the ‘Best Idea for a Social Enterprise’ category with their business idea:

JustRate is a website and mobile application to facilitate a service for the user to rate their current or previous student accommodation. JustRate aims to improve the standard of student accommodation and boost student relationships with landlords and letting agents. The student will use the service to view and rate private properties currently on the rental market. They will have the option to upload pictures of their student properties and give them a rating out of 5. This gives future tenants the opportunity to view feedback on houses they may be interested in renting. Finally this will help shine a light on poor student accommodation within the current market. 

The winning team was awarded a monetary prize by Enterprise SU. Speaking on behalf of the team, Kirsty Downey said of the ‘What’s the big idea?’ competition

“[it] has provided JustRate with brilliant networking opportunities with local supporting business communities. The competition has also helped us promote our business idea. Working with Enterprise SU has been a great experience as we have developed new skills and it has helped us improve our business plan. “

After congrautualting the team, Dr Barry McCollum (Course director for Business Information Technology pathway and director in his own spin-out company, Eventmap) commented:

“JustRate’s success in this competition is testament to the skills learned on the Business Information Technology pathway. The blended approach of technology and business education enables students to provide software platforms that are of direct application in real world scenarios. JustRate have demonstrated their skills in many areas and I’m sure will go on to greater things.”

Learn more about JustRate



About the Business Information Technology pathway.

This degree aims to give students a sound knowledge of information technology fundamentals, and their application in business, and a firm foundation in management to address a growing need for globally ready leaders in business technology.

Find out more

About the ‘What’s the Big idea?’ competition.

The ‘What’s the Big Idea?’ competition is open to all students at Queen’s who have exciting and novel business ideas. This competition offers an amazing platform to launch a business idea or product AND the chance of earning some serious cash! Plus, follow up programmes will give lots of opportunities to meet local entrepreneurs, develop creative thinking and business skills, and compete for even more dosh.

For more Information, contact:

Andrew Norton
Marketing officer
School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
028 9097 4640


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Megaw Memorial Lecture 2014 – 1st May

You are cordially invited to attend the annual Megaw Memorial Lecture which will take place on May 1st 2014 from 6pm-8.30pm in Lecture Theatre GM.001 of the Ashby Building at Queen’s University Belfast (see below for registration information).

The Megaw Memorial Lecture competition is held annually to commemorate Eric Megaw, a graduate of Electrical Engineering at QUB who made significant contributions to RADAR technology during WWII. He developed the cavity magnetron to generate powerful shortwave transmissions; this is still used in microwave ovens today.

This year four final year project students from across the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science will present. Information on the students and their projects can be found below.

Electric Vehicle Conversion and Planning:

Eamon Convery (MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering)

If you’re gonna build an electric car, why not do it with some style? The DeLorean is a pop culture icon, with ties to the film series Back to the Future, and originally being built here in Belfast, what better vehicle to use as a school mascot than an electrically powered DeLorean! This project covers the conversion of the DeLorean’s internal combustion engine to an electrical propulsion system, while ensuring excellent performance!

Acceleration of Car Sign Detection Algorithm using the ZedBoard:

Matthew Russell (MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering)

Complex image processing is becoming more prevalent in everyday life as evidenced in the automotive sector by the trend towards driver assistance systems and autonomous vehicles. These tasks usually require heavy processing and large bandwidth, two properties which are exhibited by Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs). Modern FPGAs include embedded ARM processors, and over 200 specialised DSP blocks for performing arithmetic operations. Each DSP block can be used as the basis for a processor with a very small footprint. The project aims to accelerate a Traffic Sign Recognition algorithm using these processors in a Single Instruction, Multiple Data (SIMD) architecture.

White-Box Cryptography to protect Cryptographic Keys in Software:

Hengxiu Gao (International Student, EEECS)

Cryptographic algorithms, which are used to provide confidentiality of sensitive information, are now commonly implemented on electronic devices such as, PCs, laptops, smartphones, etc. However, when a cryptographic algorithm is implemented in software on such an open device, they are very vulnerable to attacks because they can control the whole system and uncover these associated secret key. So the White-box cryptography (WBC) is used to secure software implementations and protects the keys used in cryptographic implementation.

Quantum correlations in a multi-agent quantum walk:

Josh Lockhart (MEng in Computer Science)

The most popular proposed model for quantum computation is the quantum circuit model, in which a sequence of "quantum gates" representing a quantum algorithm are applied to a quantum mechanical system in order to evolve it into some state encoding the output of the algorithm. It is difficult to physically implement quantum gates because they require an exquisite level of control over quantum systems. An alternative, "gateless" model, Measurement Based Quantum Computation (MBQC) has recently received attention. The project investigates theoretical techniques for the generation of the resources required to perform MBQC. The talk will attempt to introduce the key concepts of the field and describe the technique we have come up with.

If you are interesting in attending the event please register here
Further info on the event can be found here

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Disruptive accelerator company Analytics Engines secures £1m+ investment 'to expand global footprint'

Analytics Engines, a Belfast-based specialist in accelerating applications for databases and Big Data, has announced closure on the final part of a £1,000,000+ funding round today.

Analytics Engines products are designed to offer significant benefits to companies that need to run faster, more accurate analytics on large volumes of data –such as those in the finance, genomics, utilities and database sectors. Led by venture capital fund Crescent Capital, the £1 million+ investment will be used to speed up productisation and exploitation of IP, diversify current offerings into new sectors, support the product development road map and expand the company’s global footprint.

Winners of the Silicon Valley 2013 Best Emerging Technology Award from ITLG, Analytics Engines improves business performance by enhancing the speed and efficiency of software applications up to a magnitudeof 1000x. The company has used its partnerships with Philips Healthcare, SAP, Credit Suisse and others to demonstrate significant performance benefits over systems in current usage.

Dr Stephen McKeown, CEO of Analytics Engines, said: “The Analytics Engines suite of plug-in accelerators allows increasingly complex analytics and enhanced real-time processing of Big Data in areas such as database analysis and transactional processing, to financial risk and medical imaging. Tasks that formerly took hours to perform are now possible in minutes –this creates significant business opportunities that were unobtainable only a few years ago.

“We are very excited with this new funding round as it will allow us to more rapidly progress our product roadmap, improve our product portfolio and diversify our offering into new markets”.

Analytics Engines CTO Professor Roger Woods, currently seconded to the company under an EPSRC Impact award from Queen's University Belfast, said: “This is a QUBIS spinout company doing remarkable things from a technology point of view. It is clear that simply adding increasing numbers of computer servers has its limits from both a scalability and cost perspective. With its disruptive accelerator technology, Analytics Engines is allowing extremely computational analytics to be efficiently run on large data volumes”.

According to Crescent Capital, this investment is further evidence that high technology firms with market changing export potential are emerging from the indigenous entrepreneurial culture in Northern Ireland.

Deirdre Terrins, who led on the origination and completion of this investment for Crescent as Investment Manager said, “This investment demonstrates our belief that Analytics Engines is building highly attractive and disruptive technology which is at the forefront of the needs of businesses now and in the foreseeable fast paced future of Big Data across a number of high growth sectors. We are looking forward to supporting the development and success of this exciting proposition.”

For further information about Analytics Engines log on to


For further information contact Geoff at McGimpsey Communications on:

M: 07894 831677


Notes to the Editors

About Analytics Engines (

Analytics Engines provides customers with fast and efficient processing of business and application data. Originally spun out of the ECIT Institute at Queen's University Belfast in 2008, Analytics Engines improves business performance byenhancing the speed and efficiency of software applications. This is achieved through a suite of accelerators which can be easily integrated with existing software to provide increased application performance. This performance boost leads to significant commercial advantage, allowing increasingly complex analytics and enhanced real time processing of Big Data.

About Crescent Capital (

Crescent Capital is a Belfast based venture capital fund manager with primary investment focuson Northern Ireland based companies operating in the information technology, life sciences and manufacturing sectors. With the increasingly vibrant and growing commercial environment in Northern Ireland, indigenous talent and expertise is fostering high-grade ‘spin-out’ companies from universities and entrepreneurial ‘step-out’ enterprises from corporates. In addition, management buyouts and expansion plans are contributing to a mature investment climate which continues to develop against the back-drop of local confidence and political stability. Analytics Engines is the first of a newly emerging investment portfolio which it is building with its latest fund, Crescent Capital III LP.

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New MSc in Smart Grids (for Electric Power Systems) course launched

Innovative course aims to address the shortage of Smart Grid technology skills

Queen’s University Belfast is one of the first universities in the UK to introduce a master’s course in Smart Grids.  The course will provide an opportunity for graduates of electrical or power engineering to further develop skills in this vital area. 

The Smart Grid represents the biggest change to electricity grid in over half a century. It involves using computing and communications technology to optimise the generation, distribution and use of electricity.  The SmartGrids course will include topics in advanced electrical engineering as well as power and energy systems.  It will focus on several specialist areas dealing with the specification, design, investigation and maintenance of smarter electric grids, future networks, super grids and sustainable energy infrastructure. 

Queen’s University, a Russell Group university, is ideally placed to offer a course in this field.  Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Queen’s is consistently ranked among the top 10 in the UK for this discipline in university league tables. The University is also a member of the IET Power Academy, comprising the top 8 UK universities for electrical power engineering. 

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science has particular research strengths in the areas of electrical power engineering. It has strong collaborative links with major industrial organisations both locally and globally in the areas of renewable energy, wind generation and integration, and power electronics. 

Dr Tim Littler, co-ordinator of the course, commented “we are delighted to be one of the first UK universities to offer a masters course in the area of Smart Grids. This, coupled with our research strengths in electrical power and cyber security in particular, will ensure that students will be taught by some of the top researchers in these fields in the UK.”   

The MSc in SmartGrids will commence in September 2014 and will be offered full-time over one year.  There are also some fee reduction scholarships available for this course (Home/EU students).

For further information on these and the course itself, including details of how to apply, click here.


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5 more leading N.Ireland IT and Engineering students join Asidua’s Scholarship programme

5 more of N. Ireland’s leading IT and Engineering students have recently been awarded places on the prestigious Asidua Scholarship Programme; each securing an unrivalled package worth up to £25,000.


Launched in 2008, in co-operation with Queen’s University Belfast and the University of Ulster, the Asidua Scholarship Programme aims to attract fresh talent into the N.Ireland IT sector by offering successful IT and Engineering students an unrivalled packaged worth up to £25,000.

“The Asidua Scholarship Programme has grown successfully since being launched in 2008,” explained Asidua Chief Operations Officer, Angela Canavan.  “Since being launched we havesuccessfully awarded 22 full scholarships to local students.”

During a recent award ceremony, the Belfast based IT software and telecoms services provider announced that 5 more of Northern Ireland’s brightest IT and Engineering students – Charlotte McGarry, Conor McAteer, Luke Donnelly, Matthew Shaw and Saoirse McCann – have joined their prestigious Scholarship Programme.

In welcoming the new scholars, Angela commented: “This year we have seen an increase in both the standard and number of applications to our scholarship programme; an increase which makes me feel confident about the future of Northern Ireland’s IT sector with the growing number of talented young IT professionals.”

Angela continued: “We are confident our scholarship programme can help Charlotte, Conor, Luke, Matthew and Saoirse further stand out from their university peers by giving them the necessary skills, training and vital experience which are needed to make a successful IT career.”

In this year’s intake, 4 Queen’s University Belfast students were successfully placed and Dr Philip Hanna, Assistant Director of Education for the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Queen’s University Belfast, outlined how the programme continues to impress him each year.

“The Asidua Scholarship Programme provides a really fantastic opportunity for our students to stand out in their peer group. Each year I am impressed with what the scholars accomplish within their University modules. In large part, this comes about thanks to the experiences and skills the scholars gain working with Asidua.”

With financial assistance secured, Asidua’s 5 new scholars will continue with their first year studies at Queen’s University Belfast and University of Ulster Magee; returning this summer to begin their first industrial placement with the global IT software and telecoms services provider.


Asidua's award

This year, the Belfast based IT software and telecoms services provider has announced that 5 more of Northern Ireland’s brightest IT and Engineering students have joined their prestigious scholarship programme. During a recent award ceremony, Chief Operations Officer, Angela Canavan (back centre) welcomes new scholars Matthew Shaw (back left), Luke Donnelly (front left), Conor McAteer (back right), Charlotte McGarry (right) and Saoirse McCann (front right) to Asidua.

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Postgraduate Research Studentships for 2014/15

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science invites applications for a number of fully funded research studentships across all our research clusters, to commence in October 2014.

For full details on available topics click here.

The deadline for applications on most studentships is 28th February 2014, but check the individual project descriptions for variations.

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Insights into the Cyber Security Industry

CSIT logo

MSc in Cyber Security - Launch Event


“Demand for Cyber Security experts is growing at 12 times the rate of the overall job market”

You are invited to join QUB’s School of EEECS and Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) for the launch of the new MSc in Cyber Security which will take place on Thursday, 13th February 2014 at 11am.

The launch will take place in The Space, QUB Student's Union, University Road, Belfast, BT7 1NF. A map of the location can be found here:

The event will feature talks from industry partners who have helped to shape the content of this exciting new MSc programme as well as some of the academics responsible for managing the course and delivering it's modules.

Industry talks include:

  • Raj Samani, VP, Chief Technology Officer for McAfee EMEA providing his ‘Insights into the Cyber Security Industry’
  • Craig McKeown, Director, Forensic Services at PwC discussing ‘Cyber Security career opportunities available both locally and globally’.

Talks will commence at 11am and a pizza lunch will be provided.

All attendees will be entered into a draw to win a Nexus 7 tablet and other prizes.

If you plan to attend please RSVP: by Friday 7th February.

More information on the MSc in Cyber Security can be found on the CSIT website here:

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National Instruments Technology Seminar

Queens University Belfast, Wednesday 19th February 2014

The day will begin with the Keynote where you can learn about the NI Academic Program and at the end of the day you can get hands-on with NI LabVIEW. We suggest you attend both of these sessions, and choose from the sessions in between that best suit your needs.

Seminar Highlights:
·        Learn more about the National Instruments Academic Program
·        Research Platforms for RF and Communications
·        Research Platforms for Control Robotics and Mechatronics
·        Getting the most out of Academic Site License
·        Hands on: Building Measurement Systems with NI LabVIEW





Welcome Presentation: Accelerating Innovation with Graphical System Design


Academics around the world have adopted LabVIEW and National Instruments hardware platforms to maximise the productivity of their experimental research.  This opening session showcases how the NI academic program has enabled researchers, educators and students to tackle complex engineering challenges.


Presentation: Research Platforms for RF and Communications


Ground-breaking research into RF, wireless communication systems and software-defined radio requires a flexible platform for software design, hardware prototyping and implementation. This sessions details how National Instruments delivers an accessible, highly-modular approach that is benefitting RF & communications researchers all over the world.




Presentation: Research Platforms for Control Robotics and Mechatronics


Hear about cutting-edge control, robotics and mechatronics research applications from all over the world. The applications are diverse but they have something in common - they are all designing, prototyping and implementing their algorithms/models using the same development environment; LabVIEW. You too can benefit fromt his unified system design approach.


Presentation: Getting the most out of your Academic Site License


From classrooms to advanced research centres, thousands of academic institutions have adopted NI Academic Site Licenses. However, few take full advantage of the benefits that it offers. Whether you are a student, educator, researcher or administrator, join us to learn tips and tricks for making best use of the amazing entitlements.




Hands on: Building measurement systems with NI LabVIEW


Test-drive professional PC-based data acquisition systems and learn how to create modular, flexible and scalable systems with short development times at low cost. NI data acquisition and signal conditioning products ensure highly accurate measurements, and National Instruments LabVIEW gives you the power to easily acquire, analyse and present your data. 


Wrap Up and Prize Draw


Submit your feedback form for a chance to win a free NI training course of your choice

Date and location:

Wednesday 19th February
On-Site at Queens University Belfast – Auditorium, McClay Library

How do I register?
To register for your FREE place please contact the events team on 01635 572498, or alternatively email

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Michael Davis secures ACE-CSR prize

Congratulations are in order for Michael Davis, one of CSIT's PhD students, who recently won the 'Best Elevator Pitch' at the second annual conference for UK Academic Centres of Excellence in Cyber Security Research (ACE-CSR). Michael had only 5 minutes to talk about his research in 'Detecting Anomalous Communication Patterns in E-mail Networks' in front of a judging panel made up of people from both government and industry.

There were a total of 10 pitches, one from each of the ACE-CSR's. Michael's pitch was voted for unanimously by the judging panel. As well as receiving this great accolade Michael has also received £2000 to enable him to travel to a confrence of his choice.

Michael had this to say about winning the prize:

'I am delighted that my presentation was chosen for the prize. I would like to thank Professor John McCanny for proposing me for the competition. I hope this will raise the profile of the cyber security research being carried out at CSIT. '

CSIT's Principal Investigator, Prof. John McCanny CBE, FRS, FREng, IEEE Fellow had this to say about Michael's pitch:

'I was in complete agreement with the judges feedback comments – very clear, problem well described and solution well described. I hope the prize allows Michael to find a useful and interesting conference to go to. This was also great recognition for QUB, the School and CSIT.'

Michael's presentation can be accessed here:  ACE-CSR Michael Davis Pitch

Find out what an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research (ACE-CSR) is here.

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EEECS awarded Investor in People Status

Pictured (L-R):Professor Stan Scott, Head of School, EEECS; Stephen Farry MLA, Minister for Employment and Learning; Lesley Moreland, HR, EEECS

Building on the School’s Athena Silver SWAN Award and ECIT’s Investors in People Award, The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS) has been awarded Investors in People status. EEECS is the first School in Queen’s to achieve this award and this is another example of the School’s effective and innovative leadership within the University.

Launched in 1991, Investors in People is the UK's leading people management standard. It specialises in transforming business performance through people. Over a third of the UK's workforce uses Investors in People today, and employers do so because they see a number of real business benefits.

Benchmarking against the IIP standard was carried out during August by an external consultant who, using the School Organisation Chart, selected staff at random and interviewed them on topics including the EEECS planning process, learning and development, communication and culture.

Professor Stan Scott, Head of School, commented, “…. external recognition as an Investor in People is welcome evidence of our continuing commitment to supporting and developing our most valuable asset, our staff.  Such commitment, in a research led environment, is expected of us by the funding councils. However, coming on the back of the School’s highest ever student intake, our best ever student satisfaction result and our partnership with local industry to improve student employability, this award is a fitting tribute to an impressive team effort by dedicated line-managers and staff across the School.”

The recently developed Staff Charter was identified as excellent, a sound framework for the delivery of good management practice; the School’s long-standing commitment to continuous professional development was recognised; the peer mentor scheme was one, of several examples, of how EEECS works collaboratively and in partnership with others to achieve results; and by taking a systematic approach to performance improvement, EEECS is now competing with the very best.

For Further Information

Please contact:

Lesley Moreland

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Graduate of School involved in Major Study into Cause of Migraine

A PhD graduate from the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Queen's University Belfast, is involved in a major study into the cause of migraines.

Dr Padhraig Gormley is a key member of a team of scientists working at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute who have identified five regions of DNA containing genes linked to the onset of migraine. Studying these could "open new doors" to understanding the causes, the Cambridgeshire-based team says.

About 14% of adults are affected by the condition - usually an intense headache at the front or one side of the head. It is difficult to study because, between episodes, people are otherwise healthy. The team compared DNA samples from more than 100,000 people, including those affected and healthy patients.

They believe many of the genes associated with migraine are interconnected and could potentially be adversely affecting the chemistry of brain cells - resulting in some of the symptoms of migraine.

Dr Padhraig Gormley said: "At a fundamental biological level we really don't know what causes a migraine. Many people find it very debilitating, becoming overly-sensitive to stimuli such as light and sound. They find it very difficult to function and just want to lock themselves away in a darkened room. These five new genetic regions increase your susceptibility to develop migraine. There were already seven regions discovered, so we have 12 now. We think there should be many, many more, so there is still a lot of work to do."

He described the new discoveries as "very important to informing the direction of research", but said a cure, if one could be found - would be "many years down the line". Scientists at the institute led the study as part of the International Headache Genetics Consortium.

Dr Gormley completed his PhD at Queen's University in 2010 in the area of control engineering, where he was supervised by Professor Kang Li and Professor George Irwin. His PhD thesis was entitled 'An investigation of advanced data-driven identification methods for systems biology'. In the above study, they used data analysis techniques to find the gene groups that potentially contribute to the development of migraine, based on a large amount of data collected from large scale experiments on different groups of people.

Dr Gormley joined the prestigious Sanger Institute soon after graduating and is now working at Harvard Medical School.

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Citi Technology Roadshow

Citi Technology Roadshow delivers once again at Queen’s University


After last year’s great success, the Citi Technology Roadshow rolled in to Queen’s University Belfast again last month.

The highly successful event, held on 30th October and organised by Citi Belfast, was created to explain to students the full range of exciting IT opportunities offered by the company locally.

Six stands from Citi were setup on the campus, each representing the major IT job roles of Project Management, Business Analysis, Quality Assurance, Development, Support, and the new addition this year, Technology Infrastructure. Each area gave a unique outlook on their daily routine, Citi culture and explained how each team contributes to the global banking business, with the use of demos, posters and great conversation.

During the event students also had the opportunity to partake in a quiz about Citi Belfast, with a Google Nexus 7 tablet up for grabs.

With Citi priding itself on offering a great work-life balance, members of the Social Committee and Community Volunteering groups were also present, taking the opportunity to explain to students the fantastic social side of working in such a large company (sports teams, quiz night, go-karting, wine tasting) and the full range of community work that Citi supports, from cleaning local beaches to assisting charities throughout Northern Ireland.

Representatives from HR were also on hand with detailed information about the graduate jobs on offer and the various schemes Citi offers local students, including Citi Quest (a programme for 1st year students) and the various Citi Academy and student placement programmes. The free wireless mice, pens and multi-way USB adaptors also proved very popular with the hard-pressed students.

The event generated large crowds and a great atmosphere, with Citi representatives reporting lots of positive feedback from students from a wide variety of disciplines. This is particularly encouraging considering how many of this year’s Citi placement students attended the inaugural event last year.

John Healy, Head of Technology at Citi Belfast said, “This level of engagement with the universities is critical to the strategy of the Citi Service Centre in Belfast.  The team have done a fantastic job in building links at every level at Queen’s University that will deliver a sustained pipeline of talent in to the centre"



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Queen’s University Belfast to Develop the Next Generation of Computing Systems for Real-time Data Analytics

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS) at Queen’s University of Belfast, leads one of the forefront European research projects in Computing Systems, NanoStreams. The project, which is co-ordinated by a team of investigators in the High Performance and Distributed Computing (HPDC) and Digital Communications (DigiComms) Research Clusters, is looking to co-design the hardware and software of novel, energy-efficient micro-servers for instantaneously analysing large volumes of streaming data.

Professor Dimitrios Nikolopoulos, Project Coordinator and Director of Research in High Performance and Distributed Computing added:  “Data volumes and energy consumption render the current computing ecosystem unsustainable. NanoStreams tackles these challenges by amalgamating disruptive technologies from the areas of Embedded Systems and High Performance Computing. The project proposes radically new ways to design sustainable, real-time data processing systems. NanoStreams has strong contributions from European Hardware/Software SMEs and major corporates, which maximise the project’s potential for market impact.”

Commenting on NanoStreams, Professor Roger Woods, of the DigiComms Research Cluster, said; “We will be able to bring to bear our considerable expertise in new design methodologies and architectures using alternative forms of programmable hardware, to generate innovative solutions for real-time, micro-servers with lower energy requirements.”

Dr. Ivor Spence, of the HPDC Research Cluster and ECIT added ”There is an explosion in demand for real-time processing of the huge amounts of data generated for example by Capital Markets or patient monitoring, and NanoStreams will enable such users to benefit from the latest technical advances.

The project is supported by Neueda Consulting, Credit Suisse, IBM, Analytics Engines Ltd, Associated Compiler Experts, Queen’s University of Belfast and the Foundation of Research and Technology, Hellas.

Notes to Editors:

About QUB:

Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), established in 1845, is the 9th oldest university in the UK and a member of the Russell Group, the top 24 research-driven universities in the UK covering just 12% of the higher education sector in the UK. The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science is highly respected for its teaching and research with the most recent Research Assessment Exercise judging 80% of research within the School to be internationally excellent or world leading.


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Queen’s University Belfast Join €4.5 Million Consortium to Deliver Context-Aware Cloud Topology Optimisation and Simulation

Queen’s research in multi-objective optimisation and real-time analytics on streaming log data to form key part of developing cloud efficiencies.


Belfast, UK 15 October 2013: Queen’s University of Belfast today announced it has joined a consortium of leading organisations and universities from the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany and Sweden focused on using real-world data to optimise and make more efficient cloud computing.

Named ‘CACTOS’, the €4.5 million project seeks to address issues arising from the growth and complexity of cloud infrastructure. Research suggests we will  … (impact statement to be inserted)

Datacentres log data at rates of Gigabytes per second per server. Researchers at Queen’s University Belfast High Performance and Distributed Computing Research Cluster, part of the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS), will develop accelerator-enabled software for real-time analytics on streaming data, as part of the CACTOS datacentre monitoring framework. The objective is to achieve unprecedented filtering and processing rates of data logs generated from actual, large-scale datacentres. Advanced log analytics will be combined with rigorous optimisation methods, developed by researchers in the Knowledge and Data Engineering Cluster of EEECS. These will help CACTOS tame immense resource management complexities that arise due to heterogeneity, energy-inefficiency, service diversity and rising fault rates in datacentres.

Dimitrios Nikolopoulos, Professor at EEECS and Director of Research in High Performance and Distributed Computing, said: “To understand the highly dynamic behaviour of datacentre workloads in real-time, it is necessary to understand how key performance, reliability and energy indicators vary with the workload in the datacentre. Queen’s University Belfast will develop system monitoring that provide this insight at multiple levels of abstraction, from the raw hardware, to virtual machine and up to distributed services.”

Dr. Barry McCollum, Senior Lecturer with the Knowledge and Data Engineering Cluster at EEECS adds: “Efficient usage of Resource is of paramount importance as Cloud based technologies are steadily adopted across the market.  Approaches to scheduling developed at Queen’s University Belfast will help ensure key concepts of automation and optimisation play a defining role within this overall process. The development of a specialised scheduling ‘layer’ has the potential for huge impact within cloud technology going forward.”


CACTOS is a collaborative research project co-funded under the ICT theme of the 7th framework programme (FP7) of the European Union.  For more information visit

About Queen’s University Belfast School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS) 

Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), established in 1845, is the 9th oldest university in the UK and a member of the Russell Group, the top 24 research-driven universities in the UK covering just 12% of the higher education sector in the UK. The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science is highly respected for it’s teaching and research with the most recent Research Assessment Exercise 80% of research within the School was judged to be internationally excellent or world leading.

For more information



Dimitrios S. Nikolopoulos
+44 28 9097 4783


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CSIT- Fully funded PhD

CSIT (the Centre for Secure Information Technologies) has a new opportunity for a a fully funded PhD in the DETECTION, MITIGATION AND PREVENTION OF EMERGING APPLICATION LAYER DDOS ATTACKS (GCHQ).

For full details please visti the CSIT website

Queen’s University Engineering Parents’ Evening – Monday 4 November 2013

Engineering Parents’ Evening

Whitla Hall, Queen’s University Belfast

Monday 4 November 2013, 7.00pm- 9.30pm

(Please aim to arrive by 6.45pm, as event will commence promptly at 7.00pm)

Queen’s University will be holding an Engineering Parents’ Evening (as above) for pupils in years 12-14 in schools, and their parents/guardians, who are considering engineering degrees at Queen’s:

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering;
  • Software and Electronic Systems Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering;
  • Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering,
  • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering;
  • Product Design and Development

If you are currently studying, or considering studying, A-Level Mathematics and Science/Technology (or equivalent qualifications) we would encourage you to attend this event.

This is an exciting time for school leavers to pursue a career in the above areas, even during the current recession. There is a high demand for engineering graduates in Northern Ireland and starting salaries for Queen’s University graduates in these disciplines currently range from £18K- £42K. At the event you will have an opportunity to hear about some of the reasons why you should consider an engineering degree. You will also hear from graduates of the courses and employers, and have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. We would encourage parents/guardians to accompany their son/ daughter to this event. Light refreshments will be provided.

Please register online at

Please register by Thursday 31st October. Please note that no confirmation of receipt will be issued after you have submitted your details.


For further details about this event, contact Gemma O’Donnell, email   Tel. 028 9097 4618.

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Liopa secures category win at 25K Awards

Belfast – 30 September 2013

A team from the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT), based at Queen’s University Belfast’s ECIT Institute, which is developing novel new mobile biometric verification technology has been named the winner of the Software and Digital Media category of the 25k Awards 2013. The Liopa team went head to head with Columbus, another team from CSIT, over the final stages of the competition.

The prestigious annual 25k awards, which are sponsored by Bank of Ireland, are made under the NISP CONNECT entrepreneurship programme, based at the Northern Ireland Science Park in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter. The awards are designed to showcase the most innovative research and intellectual property from the publicly funded institutions in Northern Ireland.

Liopa won the Software and Digital Media category for the development of their biometric technology that authenticates people using lip movement, replacing passwords. This technology will enable more robust authentication and verification solutions designed for preventing fraud and theft in mobile commerce.

Commenting on the success David Crozier, Liopa co-founder and Technical Marketing Manager of CSIT said:

“We are delighted that our technology and potential has been recognised by the judging panel of the 25k Awards. The support we have received throughout this process has enabled us to bring Liopa to a point where we are actively engaging with potential new customers globally. I would also pay credit to my fellow team members – Dr Darryl Stewart, Dr Michael Loughlin and Dr Fabian Campbell West – without their research and engineering Liopa would never have become a reality”

Philip Mills, Columbus co-founder and Business Development Manager at CSIT said:

“The maturity of our technology is a number of years behind that of the Liopa team. Notwithstanding, getting to the 25k Award finals has helped our team to explore commercialisation approaches for this research as well as understand the competitive environment into which it will eventually be launched.

Congratulating both teams Prof John McCanny, ECIT Director and CSIT Principal Investigator commented:

“As an Innovation and Knowledge Centre (IKC), CSIT’s remit is to accelerate the commercialisation of world class science and emerging technologies into new products, processes or services. Both Liopa and Columbus are exemplars of the cross-functional approach we take to driving innovation featuring team members from across our research, engineering and business development disciplines. Well done to Liopa for winning the category and well done to Columbus for getting to the final too.”

Find out more about Liopa here:

Find out more about Columbus here:

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For further information, please contact:

For more information contact David Crozier – Technical Marketing Manager at CSIT

Tel: 028 9097 1754

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Diamond Jubilee Scholarships Awarded to New Students

The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has awarded Diamond Jubilee Scholarships to 8 new students studying Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Queen’s University Belfast.  They are included among a group of the UK’s top students starting an engineering degree at 27 UK based universities this autumn.

This contribution to students is further evidence of the IET’s ongoing commitment to minimising the skills gap by encouraging the brightest and best students to study IET accredited courses, which will put them on a path that is not only challenging and rewarding, but is also vital to the UK economy. 

 Professor Andy Hopper, President of the Institution of Engineering and Technology comments: “With demand for more than two million engineers over the next few decades, it has never been more important to encourage young people to study engineering so that they are able to follow rewarding careers and, ultimately, protect the UK’s economic prosperity.

 “This is the first year we’ve run this programme and we really hope that as more people hear about the scholarship, more will be encouraged to think about studying engineering. Engineering is a varied, exciting and interesting career choice.”

The IET Diamond Jubilee Scholarship programme was open to all UK students who achieved 3 ‘A’s at A Level, 3 'A' grade Advanced Highers, 5 'A' grade Highers or an International Baccalaureate Diploma at 36 points or above and who have been accepted to join an IET accredited engineering or technology degree course this year.  Qualifying for the Scholarship entitles those that applied and met the criteria to £1,000 per year during their studies, up to a maximum of £3000 for Bachelors students and £4000 for MEng students. 

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