Engineering & Mathematics

Our research and teaching are working to protect the future of our planet.

Head of Subject

Professor Islam Shyha
Head of Engineering & Mathematics

Engineering & Mathematics 


The Engineering and Mathematics subject group has a strong research expertise in energy, materials & manufacturing, mechanical & design, mathematics & modelling, automation & robotics, and operations & production management. Our students focus on engineering practices, computing skills and principles of design relating to a wide range of mechanical and energy systems. They learn to integrate their knowledge of mathematics, science, information technology, design and management and apply it to solve complex engineering problems. Our Energy and Environmental Engineering programme also helps students to gain an understanding of the operation and specification of renewable energy systems and consider the use and impact of appropriate materials and methods of manufacture and covers building services design for zero emissions. These programmes will also help the students to develop their skills in innovative thinking. 

The subject group also has strong industry links to ensure our programmes are highly relevant and up to date, providing professional insight and crucial knowledge for success. Our specialist labs include robotics and automated manufacturing which contains systems such as flexible manufacturing systems and autonomous robotics, advanced materials lab that contains solution blow spinning facility, scanning electron microscopy, optical microscopy, mechanical testing facilities, a manufacturing lab that has a wide range of conventional machine tools as well as CNC machining centres equipped with Kistler cutting force dynamometer setup.

Research Themes

Mechanical & Design 
Our research focuses on product development cycle, such as predictive engineering design modelling, multi-physics problems in solid mechanics, fluid mechanics, fluid-structure interaction and electro-magneto-mechanics, structural optimisation, technology-driven design development for renewable energy storage, aerodynamics studies, analysis of engineering design informatics, designing integrated product-service systems, modelling and management of engineering design, crowdsourcing design and manufacturing processes, and material selection. We are equipped with state-of-the-art CAD modelling and analysis software (Solidworks, ANSYS etc.), strain measurement systems, prototyping facilities with a suite of 3D printers, and 3D scanners. The group actively supports industries to develop and test novel products.    

Materials & Manufacturing Engineering
Our research focuses on the development, characterisation, and processing of a wide range of materials from metals and composites. We study the relationship between the microstructure and properties of materials, and how to manipulate these properties to improve their performance for specific applications. Our research interests include advanced machining processes, ceramic synthesis, physical metallurgy, sustainable materials processing, polymer/plastic processing & characterisation and polymeric nanofibers for energy harvesting applications.

Automation & Robotics
Our research focuses on the Industry 4.0 aspects such as power optimisation, path planning optimisation, data analytic techniques for fault diagnostic, predictive maintenance and control system applications. Our state of art Festo Flexible Manufacturing System, SCARA and Industrial robots, Siemens PLC system, Festo Robotino, National Instrument MyRio and Festo Process Control rigs provide hands on experience to both teaching and research.

Digital Manufacturing & Management
Our research focuses on the development of methodologies and software tools for systems and assembly line simulations in virtual environments, Human-Robot Interaction, physical and cognitive ergonomics and quality systems management. Practices and theory related to management of production systems, including IT in production management, enterprise resource planning, supply chain management, energy and resource management are also areas of interests. 

Mathematics & Modelling
Our multidisciplinary mathematics research spans a range of different areas of pure and applied mathematics with a particular focus on solid mechanics; computational fluid dynamics of reacting and non-reacting flows; renewable energy (solar, wave); mathematical control theory; Harmonic analysis and analytic number theory.

Our energy research focuses on renewable energy technologies including solar photovoltaic systems, new materials for building-integrated solar collectors, design, and optimisation of renewable energy systems for off-grid and water desalination applications. There is also focus on energy storage theme including storage of large-scale hydrogen storage, thermal energy storage and electric vehicles. We have state-of-the-art facilities, such as solar simulators, solar water heaters, thermal energy storage, air-conditioning, wind energy and hydro power units.

Our Research Projects

Find below some of our ongoing externally funded projects: 

  • Productivity And Sustainability Management In The Responsive Factory, Dr Gokula Vasantha, £280k, EPSRC
  • Innovative energy harvesting solutions for cyber-secured green buildings, Prof. Islam Shyha, £116k, Kuwait College of Science and Technology
  • Hydrogen Storage in the Rough Reservoir, Dr Zuansi Cai, £100k, Net Zero Technology Centre
  • PiezoACT membranes: Piezo-Active Nanofibrous Self-Decontaminating Facemasks/ Filters using Solution Blow Spinning in Egypt, Prof. Islam Shyha, £80k, The British Council
  • Dolphin Wave Energy Converter, Dr Pablo Sola, £75k, ETP
  • Nonlinear Control Systems for Wave-Energy Converters, Dr Chris Guiver, £60k, Royal Society of Edinburgh
  • Incubation Hub for Sustainable Cities and Communities, Dr Stathis Tingas, £53k, The Scottish Government
  • Roadmap for Tomorrow's Electromobility, Dr Stathis Tingas, £43k, The Scottish Government
  • Going Global Partnerships (GGP) Grant, Prof. Islam Shyha, £40k, The British Council
  • Novel Potable Aluminium-Air Battery, Dr Dongyang Sun, £24k, The British Council 
  • VP in Renewable Energy & Sustainability, £30k, Royal Academy of Engineering
  • Ceramics for Energy storage, Dr Zhilun Lu, £20k, The Royal Society 

Degree programmes