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EPSRC CDT in Sensor Technologies for a Healthy and Sustainable Future

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Sensor CDT News

Arduino workshop

last modified Jun 17, 2016 01:51 PM
The Sensor CDT students ran a sell-out workshop on how to use Arduino micro controllers in research labs

Arduino workshop

How to use Arduinos in your research

 

A team of first and second year Sensor CDT students ran an extremely enjoyable and successful one day workshop on how to use Arduino micro controllers for research applications.

The examples were very well designed.

It was very nice that there were such helpful assistants.

Exactly the kind of level and detail expected.

Very much worth the trip from London.

Great fun! Thanks

attendees 2

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Interdisciplinary

The workshop, held in the Department of Engineering, was attended by 40 undergraduate and PhD students, researchers and professors from Departments across the University, including Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Computer laboratory and Zoology. In addition researchers from other universities and industrial R&D staff also attended.

Beginners and advanced users

During the workshop beginners and advanced user alike learned how to read sensor data from analog and digital devices, use interrupt routines and control lab equipment. Controlling the speed of an electric motor was used to demonstrate the capabilities and limitations of Arduino micro controllers.

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complete system bogdan 2

Missed out on this workshop?

We are planning to run similar workshops in the future, so watch this space.

Beacon Project Collaboration with MedImmune

last modified May 24, 2016 05:37 PM

medimmune

MedImmune is supporting the Sensor CDT as part of its Beacon project

Researchers from MedImmune and the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology are collaborating on a number of projects in the areas of bio-engineering, -processing and -pharmaceuticals.

This Beacon Project collaboration is part of the pharmaceutical cluster in Cambridge, addressing fundamental questions and challenges in this area.

Research students from the Sensor CDT are part of this collaboration, working on the detection of amyloid proteins and high resolution / high throughput imaging to understand spores and viruses.

 beacon_project

 

Sensor CDT mini-research projects featured in CEB Focus

last modified May 18, 2016 02:08 PM

The second student cohort at the Sensor CDT featured in a recent article in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology’s newsletter, CEB Focus (Issue 18, May 2016). Written by our graduate student, Dimitrios Simatos, the piece highlights the diverse range of sensor related mini-research projects undertaken by the CDT students during the MRes year.  

Each mini-project bridges across two University departments, providing the students with an exclusive insight into the work being carried out in the research laboratories in Cambridge, before deciding on a path for their own PhD projects.

Read the full article here.

Sensor Team Challenge 2016

last modified May 17, 2016 04:35 PM
The Sensor Team Challenge, the final project for the MRes students at the Sensor CDT, is underway. The 2016 challenge is to develop an Optical Projection Tomography system.
Sensor Team Challenge 2016

Team Challenge brainstorm

The second cohort of Sensor CDT students has been set the challenge of developing a 3D Optical Projection Tomography (OPT) system to image biological samples.

This 15 week project is interdisciplinary in nature and will draw on the collective, broad knowledge base of the student cohort whose backgrounds cover the natural sciences and engineering disciplines. Together they will design and implement a research standard OPT system to address scientific questions in the areas of biology, physiology and medicine.

The students will be supported by a diverse group of mentors from industry and academia, who will provide practical guidance on technical issues and project management. But ultimately the direction and realisation of the project will be in the hands of the students.

Studentship available: Protein Folding of Antibody Drugs

last modified Apr 13, 2016 12:54 PM

We are recruiting for a fully funded 1+3 years MRes + PhD studentship, in collaboration with MedImmune, starting in October 2016. 

For more information please have a look at the project details.

Please note that this studentship is only open to UK and EU nationals.

The deadline for applications is Friday, 13 May 2016.

Teaching sensing to undergraduate engineers

last modified Mar 15, 2016 02:40 PM
Josie Hughes, 1st year Sensor CDT PhD student, taught a group of Cambridge undergraduate engineers the basics of interfacing sensors with Arduino microcontrollers as part of a project to introduce students to coding and electronics.

Undergraduate engineering students at Murray Edwards College enjoyed an afternoon at the end of term diving into programming Arduino microcontrollers and using their electronics skills to build a sound level meter and temperature sensor.

Josie Hughes teaching undergraduate engineers how to interface a senors with an Arduino microcontroller

The event brought together 17 female Murray Edwards College undergraduate engineers from all four years of the Cambridge engineering degree. Thomas Quinn, a  3rd year undergraduate student at Loughborough University and Josie Hughes, a 1st year Sensor CDT student and supervisors for electrical engineering, delivered a course packed with fun and serious engineering. At the end of the afternoon the students were able to monitor and log their room temperature with an Arduino and left inspired to further explore the capabilities of microcontrollers.

 

multicolour LEDs Group of undergraduate engineers learning about Arduinos and sensorsThe students only needed to bring their laptops and could keep their Arduinos after the event. Multicolour LED lights indicating sound level (left).

Visiting Professorial Fellow Denise Morrey and Oliver Hadeler, Director of Studies in Engineering at Murray Edwards College and Programme Manager of the Sensor CDT agreed that a basic knowledge of programming is an essential part of an engineer's education. Together with Alice Cicirello, Bye-Fellow at Murray Edwards College and Research Scientist at Schlumberger Research, they devised a course which was educational, practical and fun.

The event was supported by Murray Edwards College, Oliver Hadeler and Lee Smith, ARM Fellow.

 

Studentship available: NanoMOF Supramolecular Systems for Drug Delivery

last modified Mar 10, 2016 04:56 PM

We are recruiting for a fully funded 1+3 years MRes + PhD studentship, in collaboration with MedImmune, starting in October 2016.  For details of the project please go to  cdt.sensors.cam.ac.uk/industry-studentships.

Please note that this studentship is only open to UK and EU nationals.

The deadline for applications is Friday, 25 March 2016.

Sensor CDT at the Cambridge Science Festival 2016

last modified May 26, 2016 09:47 AM
Is there enough oxygen in my blood?

The Sensor CDT took part in the annual Cambridge Science Festival.

A busy weekend in March 2016 saw around 2000 visitors coming to the Plant and Life Sciences Marquee where staff and students from the Sensor CDT demonstrated their prototype pulse oximeter. The general public, from school children to retired engineers, got an insight into how a sensor works, that is used routinely in clinical environments and in popular fitness monitoring devices.

blood oxygen poster

The Sensor CDT exhibit was part of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology stand, which showcased the wide range of life science research carried out within the department, from spores to nanoparticles, advanced microscopy and health care devices.

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oliver chiara setting up

 

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festival_team

 

Watch the video below to see some of the highlights from the Science Festival:

 

Sensor Champions 2015

last modified Nov 17, 2015 11:52 AM
Congratulations to our Sensor Champions, Josie Hughes and Philip Mair.
Sensor Champions 2015

Sensor champions: Josie Hughes and Philip Mair

Many congratulations to our 2015 Sensor Champions, Josephine Hughes and Philip Mair.  Both students produced stellar work for both the practical and research components of the programme in their MRes year and fully embraced the interdisciplinary nature of the Sensor CDT course. 

Josie and Philip demonstrated a strong aptitude to learning new skills outside of their respective areas of expertise.  Philip, coming from a background in biology, used his skills and interests to venture into Machine Learning and soldering surface mount electronic components.  Josie shared her engineering undergraduate knowledge with the group when it came to programme Arduino micro controllers and designing electronic circuits.

Having immersed themselves in the theoretical and practical sensor-related aspects of engineering, physics, biology and chemistry, they are entering the start of their PhD research with an excellent grounding in the field of Sensor Technologies and Applications.

Josie is now conducting her PhD research in the Machine Intelligence Research Group, headed by Dr. Fumiya Iida, Department of Engineering, on the subject of Adaptive tactile sensing for robotics based on thermoplastics.

Philip is undertaking his PhD research in the Hollfelder Group, Department of Biochemistry.   His research is focused on the Ultrahigh throughput screening of metagenomic libraries

The second student cohort has arrived

last modified Oct 08, 2015 02:29 PM
The second cohort of Sensor CDT students has arrived at the beginning of October to embark on their four year MRes + PhD programme with us.

A new cohort of 15 Sensor CDT students from the UK, EU and overseas has just started their MRes part of the CDT programme. They all have a common interest in sensing and will contribute their experiences and knowledge from a diverse background of undergraduate degrees in

  • physics,
  • bioengineering,
  • computer science,
  • biochemistry,
  • electrical engineering,
  • nano technology,
  • neuroscience.

While the majority of the new students still have a few months to decide on their PhD project, some students are already working towards their projects with our industrial partners, e.g. MedImmune, Cambridge Display Technology and Alphasense.

It will be an exciting time ahead for them, as they learn about different aspects of sensing, trying out new ways of research and finding out what they enjoy most in the area of sensing.

First student cohort has successfully completed the MRes

last modified Sep 24, 2015 04:07 PM
The first cohort has completed their eleven months MRes course and is now preparing to embark on their individual PhD projects in five different Departments.

The first cohort of ten Sensor CDT students has successfully completed the MRes. Over the last eleven months the students attended a set of bespoke and in-depth lectures, received training on numerous advanced equipment across the University and carried out three projects of increasing complexity.

Their final project on a sensor suite which will help elderly people living a more independent life was a three months team effort. It was supported by mentors from the health care industry and some of the CDT's core industrial partners and supervisors. The results of the project, which already have received a lot of positive comments, will be presented at the Sensors Day.

The students are now embarking on their individual PhD projects in the Departments of Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Materials Science, Physics and Biochemistry. Topics include adaptive tactile sensing for robotics, measuring protein aggregation in primary containers for the pharmaceutical industry, bore well monitoring in oil and gas installations, ultrahigh throughout screening using micro droplets and advanced image processing for optical sensing.

Open Technology Week 2015

last modified Jul 27, 2015 03:15 PM
MRes student Tiesheng Wang presents a Sensor Team Challenge prototype at this year's Open Technology Week.

A prototype sensor for monitoring elderly people in their own home has been presented at the 2015 Open Technology Week which runs from 26-30 July at a number of venues across Cambridge.

Open Technology Week - an opportunity for
the Sensor CDT to get involved

 

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Make-athon in Cambridge Makespace - meet likeminded people in a supportive and innovative setting.

Made within 2h: a prototype microfluidics well for biophysics experiments
Programme Manager Oliver Hadeler joined a team of physicists and engineers to look at different ways to manufacture microfluidic devices. A well with a diameter of 100µm was cut into perspex with a laser cutter and inspected using a modified Raspberry Pi camera. This process cuts out the multi-step lithography process used to make microfluidic devices in PDMS.

Future work: develop advanced microfluidic devices and make them in the Institute of Manufacturing.

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 MRes student Tiesheng Wang presented the Sensor Box to an audience of enthusopen_technology_20150726_tiesheng_1iastic engineers and scientist from academia and industry in the Department of Engineering. The Sensor Box contains sensors to monitor temperature, light level, movement and noise inside a person's home and sends the data to a server for further processing. E.g. if an elderly person normally gets up at 7am in the morning the light levels will go up. If this event is missing a smart algorithm will trigger an alarm and alert carers, family or friends.

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The sensor is developed using open source hardware such as mbed or Particle board processors. The technological challenges are to reduce power consumption while ensuring a reliable connection to the server. The students use lab spaces across the University, e.g. Engineering shown on the right.

Sensors Day 2015

last modified Oct 07, 2015 11:32 AM
We will showcase innovative and exciting sensor technologies and applications at the international Sensors Day 2015. This one-day conference will be held on 16 October 2015 at Murray Edwards College. The first cohort of Sensor CDT students will demonstrate their comprehensive set of sensors for assisted living developed during their Sensor Team Challenge. More details will be published soon on this website.

The Sensors Day conference will bring together researchers from Cambridge, other international universities and industry to showcase exciting advances in sensor technologies and applications and related disciplines, including robotics and microfluidics.

Confirmed speakers include Prof Jeremy Baumberg, Cambridge, Luke Lee, Berkeley and Andrew de Mello, ETHZ.

This one day conference will be held on

Friday 16 October 2015
at
Murray Edwards College
Cambridge

The first cohort of Sensor CDT students will present and demonstrate their impressive intelligent sensor network for assisted living, which they developed during their three months Sensor Team Challenge.

Further information, including the full list of speakers will be announced shortly.

MRes student Josie Hughes publishes research outcome from Mini Project

last modified May 13, 2015 12:48 PM
Josie Hughes publishes the results from her Mini Project on noise monitors connected via a Bluetooth Low Energy network in the International Journal on Smart Sensing and Intelligent Systems

Josephine Hughes, an MRes student in the first cohort of the Sensor CDT has just published the results from her 8 week Mini Project entitled "Development of wireless sensor network using Bluetooth Low Energy for construction noise monitoring" in the International Journal on Smart Sensing and Intelligent Systems.

The paper focuses on noise detection and monitoring around the construction site of the London Bridge Station redevelopment and compares the performance and cost of different network technologies. The Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) network was capable of identifying and locating vehicle noise around the construction site. The low cost of the system would allow to deploy a large number of sensor nodes around a construction site to monitor noise with great spatial resolution. Other types of sensors, e.g. temperature and humidity could be easily added to the network.

Josie has an Engineering degree from Cambridge University, where she specialised in Electrical and Information Engineering and gained particular experience in low cost open access technology during her final year project.

MedImmune joins Sensor CDT industrial consortium

last modified Jun 03, 2015 03:12 PM
The pharmaceutical company MedImmune will sponsor up to two Sensor CDT studentships per year.

The international pharmaceutical company MedImmune has joined the consortium of industrial partners of the Sensor CDT. With its major R&D hub based in Cambridge, MedImmune has already strong links with individual researchers from Cambridge University and the Sensor CDT. Over the coming years MedImmune will support up to two PhD studentships per year in sensor areas related to pharmaceutical research. Students will be able to join the Sensor CDT with the agreement to pursue their PhD on a MedImmune project after completing their MRes year.

Sensor Team Challenge on Assisted Living

last modified May 13, 2015 01:01 PM
The Sensor CDT students are starting their final MRes project, the Sensor Team Challenge. This year's topic is "Assisted Living".

The first cohort of Sensor CDT students is just starting its Sensor Team Challenge on Assisted living for the elderly. The students will develop a network of sensors helping to assist people in their homes to live a more independent life. After receiving a short briefing document the students will shape and manage the project mainly by themselves. External technical advisors and mentors will support the students with practical expertise and transferable skills, such as programme management.

The Sensor Team Challenge is the last of a series of projects carried out by the Sensor CDT students during the MRes phase. It brings together all ten students in the cohort to collectively work on a cross-disciplinary project which is of general interest to research and industry.

New Centre for Infrastructure Sensing

last modified Feb 06, 2017 03:08 PM
The University will be receiving 18 million pounds to develop a new national Centre for Infrastructure Sensing on the West Cambridge Site.

The University of Cambridge will receive £18 million in funding to ensure that the UK’s infrastructure is resilient and responsive to environmental and economic impacts. The funding will be used to support  research in the application of advanced sensor technologies to the monitoring  of the UK’s existing and future infrastructure, in order to protect and maintain it.

The funding is part of the wider UK Collaboration for Research in Infrastructure & Cities (UKCRIC), which is a £138 million capital investment that will be centred around the Olympic Park in Stratford and will include 13 university partners from across the UK.

The Cambridge funding will be used to build a National Research Facility for Infrastructure Sensing on the West Cambridge site, which will build upon the expertise of the University’s Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC).  The new building will be an interdisciplinary centre for sensors and instrumentation for infrastructure monitoring and assessment, spanning scales from an individual asset, such as a tunnel, building or bridge, to a complex system such as a railway or a city district. More advanced sensors and appropriate data analysis will ensure better product quality, enhanced construction safety, and smarter asset management.

We hope to set up an exciting collaboration between this new centre and the Sensor CDT.

Read more

Arrival of the first cohort of CDT student

last modified Oct 14, 2014 09:28 PM
The first cohort of 10 Sensor CDT students has arrived this week.

The first cohort of ten students have embarked on the Sensor CDT course this week. The students, with undergraduate degrees in physics, engineering, biochemistry and biology, have been selected out of a large competitive field of applicants. The three women and seven men come from universities in the UK, Europe and the Far East. The Sensor CDT will offer them a well rounded postgraduate education, providing in-depth technical knowledge, entrepreneurial and business skills and plenty of opportunities to work in teams as well as individually. Mentoring and placements offered by the Sensor CDT's industrial partners will support their research and learning.

From left to right the students are:

Back row: Philip Mair, James Manton, Josie Hughes, Richard Hall, Tiesheng Wang, Oliver Bonner

Front row: Geraldine Baekelandt, Isabella Miele, Omar Ajad, Vitaly Levdik

Kick off reception at Trinity College

last modified Sep 04, 2014 09:21 PM
The Sensor CDT marks the start of the CDT with a reception and dinner at Trinity College for academic and industrial partners.

In the run-up to the the imminent arrival of the first student cohort in a month's time, the Sensor CDT starts in style with a drinks reception and dinner at Trinity College.

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This was a great opportunity for CDT supervisors, members of the industrial consortium and the CDT management and steering teams to meet, mingle and exchange ideas. The academic and industrial partners expressed real interest in contributing to the Sensor CDT and engaging with the programme.  More than 40 members attended the event.

Clemens Kaminski, the CDT director, gave a brief overview of the aims of the Sensor CDT and an update on the organisational progress and student numbers.

reception 9

Many sensor related projects, research and collaborations were discussed over an excellent dinner in the Allhusen Room with its Leslie MacDonnald ("Max") Gill wind dial from 1926 on one of the walls - an example of an early "remote sensor".

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dinner 5 dinner 3

sundial

Senior Teaching fellows appointed for the Sensor CDT

last modified Sep 02, 2014 10:23 PM
Dr Tanya Hutter and Dr Fernando da Cruz Vasconcellos join us as senior teaching fellows in charge of educational delivery

 

Welcome to Fernando da Cruz Vasconcellos and Tanya Hutter

We would like to welcome the new senior teaching fellows, Dr. Fernando da Cruz Vasconcellos and Dr. Tanya Hutter, both who join us as Senior Teaching Fellows of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Sensor Technologies and Applications (Sensor CDT). Fernando and Tanya will be helping with the course development, organising the student projects and mentoring.

          Fernando is a post-doctoral researcher from the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology here at the University of Cambridge where he works on Sensors for Healthcare Applications. He says, "I’m very excited to be part of the Sensor CDT and I'm looking forward to significantly contribute to the Sensor CDT through teaching, research and collaboration across the University, particularly in my areas of expertise of soft biological systems, functional materials and sensors."

     Fernando obtained a B.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of California-Santa Barbara (UCSB) in 2000. From the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), he received a M.Sc. (2007) and a Ph.D. degree, in a joint program with MIT, (2011) in Chemical Engineering. He served as Professor in the Department of Production Engineering of FACAMP, Campinas, São Paulo (2011-2012). Fernando has professional experience in the design, management and execution of engineering projects in multinational companies. He has broad international research and industry experience in the chemical engineering and biotechnology sectors, and he has been part of the founding team of two technology start-up companies in Brazil. Since 2013, Fernando has been a post-doctoral researcher and invited lecturer at the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology here at the University of Cambridge.  

     Tanya Hutter obtained a B.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering from the Ben-Gurion University in 2007. She received a M.Sc. in Materials Science and Engineering from Tel-Aviv University in 2009. In 2013, she obtained a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Trinity College and the Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge. Between 2013 and 2014, she held a University of Cambridge-Wellcome Trust Senior Internship for Interdisciplinary Research. Tanya has experience in the theoretical and experimental design and development of various sensing platforms. She has been involved with CamBridgeSens since 2009, when she was a 1st year PhD student in Cambridge. Her team won the CamBridgeSens Sensor Competition to develop an integrated optical waveguide sensor. Tanya is also a co-founder of a chemical sensor startup in Cambridge.

     She says, "I have been involved in sensor research for several years now, and the multidisciplinary nature of this area makes it difficult to be placed in a single Department. I hope the Sensor CDT will bridge those gaps across various Departments and enable truly interdisciplinary research. I am very excited to see the CamBridgeSens network grow into the Sensor CDT programme, and I am thrilled to be part of the team."

New building - Topping out ceremony

last modified Jul 14, 2014 12:37 PM
New building for the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology

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The new building for the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, which is providing the hub for the CDT in Sensor Technologies and

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Applications, is being built on the University's West Cambridge Site. This new building will bring the Sensor CDT  in close proximity to the activities of most of the other CDTs awarded to the University of Cambridge. Situated near the Cavendish Physics Laboratory, the Computer Laboratory, the Nanoscience Centre, Electrical Engineering and the Institute for Manufacturing the building will feature state of the art laboratory and teaching space and dedicated facilities to host the Sensor CDT cohort.  We are delighted to see the progress with the building which is on plan to be ready for the 2nd cohort of students to enter the CDT in 2015.  Have a look at the  video of the top out ceremony.

Cambridge EPSRC Centre in Sensor Technologies announced

last modified Apr 16, 2014 02:38 PM
The department of Chemical Engineering will host the EPSRC CDT in Sensor Technologies and Applications, which will involve 50 academics and 20 departments across the University of Cambridge. The programme is strongly supported by leading industries who have committed to the programme with studentships and training.
"I am thrilled about this development", says Professor Clemens Kaminski, director of the CDT.  "Sensor research has become a vastly complex and multidisplinary activity and has to be recognised as an academic discipline in its own right.  The CDT will function like a virtual superdepartment in Cambridge, providing training for more than 50 outstanding PhD students to produce the next generation of leaders in the field."

The CDT builds on the foundations of CamBridgeSens, the University's network for sensor research.  It brings together world-leading expertise, infrastructure and people from more than 20 departments across Cambridge.  The programme will be underpinned by a consortium of industrial partners, which is tightly integrated into the CDT and through its needs and engagement will inform its direction. In the first year of their 4 year PhD programme, student cohorts will attend specialised lectures, practicals and research mini-projects, to receive training in a
range of topics underpinning sensor research, including physical principles of sensor hardware, acquisition and interpretation of sensory information, and user requirements of sensor applications. Team-building aspects will be strongly emphasised, and through an extended sensor project treated as a team challenge in the first year of their programme, the
students will together, as a cohort, face a problem of industrial relevance and learn how to address a research problem as a team rather than individually. The cohorts will be supported by a mix of academic and industrial mentors, and will receive business, presentation and project-management skills. During years 2 to 4 of their PhD course, students will pick a PhD topic offered by the more than 50 PIs participating in the CDT. Each topic on offer will be supervised by at least two academics from different departments/disciplines and may include industrial partners.
"We are now recruiting the first cohort of outstanding students for the Sensor CDT, to start in October 2014", says the programme manager of the CDT, . "Interested students should register their interest with me as soon as possible.  The formal application portal will be open over the coming days."