Sensors, Signals and Systems

Dr Adam Stokes is a specialist in soft robotics and spent some time speaking with Sky News about the future this technology. Soft robotics are changing the way that we interact with robots as they are created from pliable material which has strength, but won't cause damage.

A system which could help keep the UK’s lights on and save the energy industry millions has been devised by a group of Heriot-Watt PhD students on a three month multi-disciplinary project.

ERPE alumna Dr Suzanne Costello, who studied for both her Physics undergraduate degree and her Engineering doctorate at Heriot-Watt, has been elected Chair of the UK chapter of the International Microelectronics Assembly and Packaging Society (IMAPS); the first woman to hold the role.

Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh welcome the outstanding results of REF2014 for the Edinburgh Research Partnership in Engineering (ERPE). 94% of our overall research activity is world-leading or internationally excellent. This, combined with the number of academic staff involved, makes Edinburgh the UK powerhouse in Engineering.

Dr Mathini Sellathurai, from ERPE Signals, Sensors and Systems theme, has secured funding from EPSRC (£280,000) to develop signal processing techniques for large scale antenna systems using compact ESPAR antennas.

Yoann Altmann, Research fellow working with Prof. Steve McLaughlin and Prof. Andrew Wallace at the Institute of Sensors, Signals and Systems (ISSS), has been awarded a “Prix de These Leopold Escande”, from the National Polytechnic Institute of Toulouse (INPT), France.

Tuesday 14 October is Ada Lovelace Day, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

Ada Lovelace Day Podcast
To celebrate we have developed an Ada Lovelace Day podcast (16 mins) of staff and students sharing stories of STEM women who have inspired them.

Colleagues featured in this recording are:

Industrialists, academics and students gathered in Edinburgh yesterday to launch a new Centre aimed at developing robots which can act independently and which they believe will revolutionise society in the next twenty years.

An ERPE team, DiverSense Ltd, has made it through to the final of the Converge Challenge, Scotland’s biggest academic entrepreneurial showcase competition, taking place later this month.

A major international symposium at ERPE, Heriot-Watt University this week will be considering the future development of robots as they provide care for the elderly and infirm, conduct emergency rescue and security work in inhospitable environments, learn to work increasingly independently and react to human body language to become more effective human companions.

"Future for Li-Fi is everywhere" says Professor Haas

Li-Fi pioneer Professor Harald Haas has featured on the BBC World Service programme 'Click' talking about visual light communication technology using micro LEDs.

ERPE's Professor David Lane joined Universities and Science Minister David Willets and other colleagues to launch a UK strategy for stimulating growth in robotics and autonomous systems (RAS).

Broadband satellite communication systems on planes, trains and other fast-moving platforms are being advanced by ERPE, working alongside Europe’s largest space company.

Very Small Aperture Terminals

Di Wu, an ERPE PhD student has just won the coveted DSTL prize on their recent challenge competition on spectral deconvolution. Other researchers from the UDRC entered the competition back in October where the challenge was to identify a range of chemicals utilising signal processing expertise.

A new tool designed to make water births safer and easier and to benefit pregnant women and midwives has been designed by a team from Heriot-Watt, led by Professor Marc Desmulliez, the University of Edinburgh and Loughborough University.

Research Futures has hosted the first UK national EPSRC Engineering Roadshow for Early Career Researchers at the Postgraduate Centre at Heriot-Watt's Edinburgh Campus.

A powerful camera is being developed that will enable scientists to examine living cells in unprecedented detail.

The fingernail-sized device, mounted within a microscope, will enable close-ups of the movement of molecules within cells.

It should give scientists fresh understanding of how healthy - and diseased - cells behave.

High sensitivity

The microwave and antenna engineering research cluster of MISEC, Institute of Sensors Signals and Systems in the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, hosted the inaugural working group and management committee meeting of COST Action ic1301 WiPE: Wireless Power Transmission for Sustainable Electronics on 24 and 25 March at the Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh Campus.

ERPE academic Harald Haas has been recognised by EPSRC as one of ten RISE Leaders for 2014. The campaign, in partnership with the Royal Academy of Engineering, was launched by the Science Minister, David Willetts in November 2013 to mark the 20th anniversary of EPSRC.

ERPE has developed a low temperature 5,120 pixel astronomical detector for a sub-millimetre camera operating at wavelengths of 450 and 850 microns. The SCUBA-2 camera, installed on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope, scans the sky an unprecedented 200 times faster than its predecessor.

Two new postgraduate training centres, aimed at producing tomorrow's top engineers and scientists, will be led by Heriot-Watt University as part of a £350m initiative announced by Science Minister David Willetts.

David Willets visits Heriot Watt Univeristy


The Edinburgh Research Partnership in Engineering is a strategic alliance between Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh.
Working with academic and commercial partners we aim to deliver world leading research and expertise in engineering to the greatest commercial, social and economic impact and benefit through education and advancement in science and engineering.

Energy and Resource Management

Research in ERPE to measure customer reaction and attitude to communication interfaces in new consumer services has influenced service provision at Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds Group. The metric and the use methodology have been adopted in several service industry sectors - telephony, retail, travel and financial services.

Research into Agile Tomography by ERPE Academics applies the tomographic method to many different problems by extending the technology of the method using:

  • Novel low-noise electronic systems
  • Innovative image reconstruction techniques

ERPE research in Tomography follows three major threads:

Founded from a 2011 conversation through the Edinburgh Research Partnership in Engineering and Mathematics (ERPem), and the Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance (SICSA), EDU-RAS harnesses the potential of up to 50 world leading investigators from 16 cross disciplinary research groups and Institutes across the School of Engineering & Physical Sciences and The Department of Computer Science at Heriot-Watt University and the Schools of Informatics and Engineering at the University of Edinburgh.

Conceptual image of earth with communication links interconnecting all people in all countries

Research Aims

Our programme of research tackles both theoretical and fundamental communications problems as well as more practical issues of implementing and improving communications systems. Our work addresses a wide range of technologies including wireline, radio frequency and optical communications systems, as well as improving communications interfaces.

Research Aims

Our programme of research delivers world leading research in signal and image processing from fundamental theoretical and algorithmic work through to its translation to specific audio, video, radar/sonar, and medical imaging applications.

Subscribe to Sensors, Signals and Systems