Hongnian Yu

hongnian yu

Dr Hongnian Yu



Professor Hongnian Yu is Head of Research in the School of Engineering and the Built Environment. He has successfully supervised 20 PhD theses and 18 Master by Research theses, and has examined over 30 PhD/MPhil students’ theses as both internal and external examiner. He has trained 12 post-doctoral research fellows. He has published over 200 journal and conference research papers. He has held several research grants worth about eight million pounds from the UK EPSRC, the Royal Society, and the European, AWM, as well as from industry. He has managed several international large consortiums as a coordinator. Examples are 1) coordinator (PI) of an EPSRC funded £158K international network project on Human Adaptive Mechatronics which includes 7 Japanese partners and 7 UK partners; 2) coordinator of the EU funded 3.05 million Euro Erasmus Mundus FUSION project which has 20 international partners; 3) coordinator of the EU funded one million Euro Marie Curie project, etc.

Prof Yu has strong research collaboration with partners from over 30 countries, such as China, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Romania, Thailand, and UK. He was awarded the F.C. William Premium for his paper on adaptive and robust control of robot manipulators by the IEE Council, and has received two best conference paper awards, seven best (student) conference paper awards with his research students. He has won the Gold Medal on The World Exhibition on Inventions, Research and New Technologies, INNOVA 2009, Brussels, and International Exhibition of Inventions, Geneva, Switzerland, 2010, for invention “Method and device for driving mobile inertial robots”; and the 43rd International Exhibition of inventions, New Techniques and Products, in Geneva, 2015. He is a member of the EPSRC Peer Review College, Fellow of the IeT, Fellow of the RSA, and senior member of IEEE.

Prof Yu is multi-disciplinarily educated and has a divergent knowledge base, good communication and teaching skills.He is enjoying working with people, eager to learn, hardworking and conscientious with considerable initiative. His research covers the following three areas:
1) Robotics and intelligent control.
2) Applied Artificial intelligence, data analysis, data sciences with applications in digital healthcare and manufacturing systems
3) Applications of emerging technology, such as RFID, wireless technology, etc into the health care, manufacturing systems.

Research Areas


Conference Organising Activity

  • Programme Chair of the EPSRC Network Plus: Industrial Systems in the Digital Age Conference 2018, Newcastle, 26-27 June 2018
  • International co-Chair of 2017 Annual Symposium of the Institute of Solid Mechanics (SISOM) and Symposium of Acoustics
  • Programme Chair of the EPSRC Network Plus: Industrial Systems in the Digital Age Conference 2017, Glasgow, 20-21 June 2017
  • General co-chair of the 2016 International Conference on Advanced Mechatronic Systems, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia, 30 Nov. - 3 Dec., 2016
  • General Chair of International Conference on Software, Knowledge, Information Management and Applications (SKIMA)
  • General co-chair of the 2015 International Conference on Advanced Mechatronic Systems
  • General co-chair of the 2014 International Conference on Advanced Mechatronic Systems


Editorial Activity

  • Guest editor of Energies on special issue - Smart Design, Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0
  • Guest editor of Journal of Mathematical Problems in Engineering on special issue - New Developments on Robust Nonlinear Control and Its Applications
  • Guest editor of Journal of Mathematical Problems in Engineering on Special issue - New Developments on Robust Nonlinear Control and Its Applications
  • Guest editor of Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part I: Journal of Systems and Control Engineering on Special issue - Human Adaptive Mechatronics
  • Associate Editor, International Journal of Automation and Computing


External Examining/Validations

  • An External Evaluator for the Study Abroad Framework at University of West London
  • External examiner in BEng/MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering at University of Sussex
  • External examiner in MSc/PgDip Computer Sciences and Technology at The University of Bedfordshire
  • External course examiner in MSC/PgDip Robotics and Automation at The University of Salford
  • External examiner in BSc Computing, Business Computing, Computing & Internet & Multimedia Computing at University of Surrey Roehampton University


Fellowships and Awards

  • Fellow of RSA
  • Fellow of Institution of Electrical Engineering
  • International Exposition Geneva award, for invention (The Haptic Robot Control on Uneven Terrain and Uncertain Environment)
  • China Association of Inventors (CAI) award – Prize of China Delegation of the Exhibition in recognition of the outstanding performance and idea demonstrated by the invention, for invention (The Haptic Robot Control on Uneven Terrain and Uncertain Environment)
  • Best paper award, at the 17th International Conference on Automation and Computing, 10 September 2011
  • Best paper award at the International Conference on Software, Knowledge, Information Management and Applications (SKIMA), 25-27 August, 2010
  • Best student paper award at the 16th International Conference on Automation and Computing (ICAC'10), 11 September 2010,
  • Best Student Paper award at the 15th International Conference on Automation & Computing
  • FC Williams Prize for an outstanding Paper


Grant Reviewer

  • Member of the UK Research and Innovation Future Leaders Fellowships (UKRI FLF) programme Peer Review College
  • EPSRC review college member


Invited Speaker

  • CPS-based Intelligent Firefighting Robot Systems at SMART INDUSTRY WORKSHOP - Recent Advances in Industrial Digitalization, Robotics and Automation, 9-11 January 2019, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK
  • Applications & Future Trends of Robotics, Hangzhou, China, 21 March 2018
  • Transforming manufacturing in China: Industry 4.0 and robotics, Qinghua University, China, May 2017
  • China Intelligent Manufacturing - opportunities for Bournemouth University, ZhengZhou, China, May 2016
  • On design, modelling and control of rescue robots at International Conference on Advanced Mechatronic Systems,10-12 August, 2014, Kumamoto, Japan
  • Activity recognition of elderly people, The 8th International Conference on Software, Knowledge, Intelligent Management and Applications, 18-20 December 2014, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • ICT enabled health care for elderly , 17th International Conference on Computer and Information Technology
  • Keynote Speaker at 9th WSEAS International Conference on Mathematics and Computers in Business and Economics, Bucharest, ROMANIA, 24-26 June 2008


Research Degree External Examining

  • PhD examination: Improved Blockchain - Proof-of-Work Consensus Protocol - Performance using Machine Learning , University of Greenwich
  • PhD examination: Trust Evaluation and Management in eCommerce Systems using Artificial Intelligence and Emerging Technologies, University of West Scotland
  • PhD examination: On the Development and Enhancement of Artificial Intelligence Algorithms for Swarm Robots in Real World Application, Heriot Watt University
  • PhD examination: Fuzzy Transfer Learning in Human Activity Recognition, Nottingham Trent University
  • PhD examination: The Effect of Multimodal Metaphors on Social Media Platforms & Impact on Consumer Purchase Decisions, UNIVERSITY OF WEST LONDON
  • Environmentally Robust Multiple Camera Tracking, PhD Dissertation, Sussex University
  • Visual Feedback Stabilisation of a Cart Inverted Pendulum, PhD Dissertation, Bradford University
  • Study of Role of technology in Outsourcing Practices in the Oil and Gas Industry, PhD Dissertation, University of Central Lancashire
  • PhD examination: Trajectory Tracking and Navigation of unmanned ground vehicle using intelligent controllers and computer vision, Sussex University
  • PhD Examination: Mesoscopic dynamics of pitch processing in human auditory cortex, Bournemouth University
  • PhD examination: Active learning for data streams, Bournemouth University
  • PhD Examination: Self-organising assembly using swarm robots, Southampton University
  • PhD Examination: Organisational Factors in RFID Adoption, Implementation and Benefits, University of Central Lancashire
  • PhD examination: Advanced PID Control Optimisation and System Identification for Multivariable Glass Furnace Processes by Genetic Algorithms, Liverpool John Moore’s University
  • PhD examination: An Efficient Approach to Online Bot Detection Based on a Reinforcement Learning Technique, Northumbria University
  • PhD examination: A Standards-based ICT Framework to Enable a Service-Oriented Approach to Clinical Decision Support, Sussex University
  • PhD examination: Multimodal E-Learning: An Empirical Study, De Montfort University
  • PhD examination: Web Service Security Enhancements Supporting Service Oriented Architecture, Sussex University
  • PhD examination: Global plant characterisation and distribution with evolution and climate, University of West England
  • PhD examination: Multimedia Communication in e-Government Interface: A Usability and User Trust Investigation, De Montfort University
  • A Multi-axial Optical Fibre and Linear Polarizer based Force and Torque Sensor for Dexterous Robotics Fingertips, PhD dissertation, King’s College London
  • Federated sensor network architecture design for the internet of things systems, PhD dissertation, Loughborough University
  • Understanding and representing supply chain complexity and mobility: An examination of contending methods, PhD dissertation, Liverpool University
  • Modelling and dynamic stability of a compliant humanoid robot – CoMan, PhD dissertation, Manchester University
  • Some aspects of human performance in a human adaptive mechatronics system, PhD dissertation , Loughborough University, May 2011
  • The Role of Edutainment in E-learning: An Empirical Study, PhD dissertation , De Montfort University
  • Applying Laser Irradiation and Intelligent Concept to Identify Grinding Phenomena, PhD dissertation, Nottingham University
  • Non-Intrusive Driver Drowsiness Detection Systems, PhD dissertation , Bradford University
  • A Risk-based Maintenance Methodology of Industrial Systems, PhD dissertation, Liverpool John Moores University
  • Generator Maintenance Scheduling Models in Power Systems, PhD Dissertation, Bradford University
  • Incremental High Quality Probabilistic Roadmap Construction for Robot Path Planning, PhD dissertation, The University of Bedfordshire
  • “Control Structure Selection for Plantwide Control under Model Uncertainties,” PhD dissertation by Rudy Agustriyanto, Newcastle University
  • Pattern Recognition of Grinding Phenomenon, Grinding Defects and Generic Strategy to Process Monitoring within Grinding Technologies,” PhD dissertation, The University of Nottingham
  • An Empirical Investigation in using Auditory Metaphors to Browse and Communicate Information to Users, MPhil dissertation, Bradford University
  • “Modelling an operations strategy for integration of food traceability initiatives with supply chain operations,” PhD dissertation, Liverpool University
  • Visual Navigation Algorithms for Indoor Service Robots, PhD dissertation, The University of Essex
  • “An Empirical Approach to Virtual Collaboration in Working and Education Sectors in Saudi Arabia,” MPhil Dissertation, Bradford University
  • “An Approach to Program Transformation Predication for Software Evolution,” PhD Dissertation, De Montfort University
  • “Image processing Techniques in a Server Robot Waiterless Restaurant”, MPhil dissertation, The University of East London
  • “A Novel Non-linear Sliding Observer for Slip Estimation of Unmanned Ground Vehicles”, PhD dissertation, King’s College London
  • “Networked Predicative Control Systems: Control Scheme and Robust Stability,” PhD dissertation, The University of Glamorgan
  • “ERP/Lean Implementation within a Small to Medium Enterprise”, MPhil dissertation, The University of Teesside
  • “Supply Chain Performance Measurement Systems for the Automotive Industry”, PhD dissertation, The University of Liverpool
  • “Operational Initiatives in the Food Industry,” PhD dissertation, Liverpool John Moores University
  • “Web-Based Intelligent Grinding Condition Monitoring Systems,” PhD dissertation, The University of Nottingham
  • “Information systems design using emergent Internet technology to support automotive supply chains”, University of Liverpool
  • “The fairest packet selection policy for sorted priority packet scheduling: theory and application”, MPhil dissertation, University of Liverpool
  • “Adaptive 3D Modelling Based on Single Images Using Non-uniform Rational B-spline Technique”, PhD dissertation, The University of Derby
  • “Braided pneumatic muscle actuators, enhanced modelling and performance in integrated redundant and self healing actuators”, PhD dissertation, University of Salford
  • “Vision-based Neural Network Classifiers and their Applications”, PhD dissertation, The University of Luton
  • “Real time simulation of a DC motor using FPGA approach”, MRes dissertation, University of Leeds
  • “Design and control of Hybrid Machines” Liverpool John Moores University
  • Robust and predictive control of 1.5 MW gas turbine engine”. Exeter University


Visiting Positions

  • Guest Professor at Zhongyuan University of Technology
  • Visiting professor at Lyon 2 University, 23 February – 23 March 2012
  • Guest Professor at Shanghai Jiaoton University



128 results

Combined Petri net modelling and AI based heuristic hybrid search for flexible manufacturing systems—part 1. Petri net modelling and heuristic search

Journal Article
Yu, H., Reyes, A., Cang, S., & Lloyd, S. (2003)
Combined Petri net modelling and AI based heuristic hybrid search for flexible manufacturing systems—part 1. Petri net modelling and heuristic search. Computers and Industrial Engineering, 44(4), 527-543. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0360-8352%2802%2900212-7
This two-part paper presents modelling and scheduling approaches for flexible manufacturing systems (FMS) using Petri nets (PNs) and artificial intelligence (AI) based heurist...

Modelling and control of magnetic suspension systems

Conference Proceeding
Yu, H., Yang, T., Rigas, D., & Jayawant, B. (2002)
Modelling and control of magnetic suspension systems. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Control Applications. https://doi.org/10.1109/cca.2002.1038729
The paper discusses the modelling and control of DC magnetic suspension systems. The dynamic model of magnetic suspension systems is first developed by using the Euler-Lagrang...

Decentralised power system load frequency control beyond the limit of diagonal dominance

Journal Article
Yang, T., Ding, Z., & Yu, H. (2002)
Decentralised power system load frequency control beyond the limit of diagonal dominance. International Journal of Electrical Power and Energy Systems, 24(3), 173-184. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0142-0615%2801%2900028-x
The design of decentralised robust load frequency control for interconnected multi-area power systems is studied in this paper. It is shown that although the design can be nat...

Integrating Petri Nets and hybrid heuristic search for the scheduling of FMS

Journal Article
Reyes, A., Yu, H., Kelleher, G., & Lloyd, S. (2002)
Integrating Petri Nets and hybrid heuristic search for the scheduling of FMS. Computers in Industry, 47(1), 123-138. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0166-3615%2801%2900124-5
This paper studies modelling and scheduling of Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS) using Petri Nets (PNs) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) based on heuristic search methods. ...

Advanced scheduling methodologies for flexible manufacturing systems using Petri nets and heuristic search

Conference Proceeding
Moro, A., Yu, H., & Kelleher, G. (2000)
Advanced scheduling methodologies for flexible manufacturing systems using Petri nets and heuristic search. In Proceedings 2000 ICRA. Millennium Conference. IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation. Symposia Proceedings (Cat. No.00CH37065). https://doi.org/10.1109/robot.2000.846386
The combination of Petri net (PN) and AI to solve flexible manufacturing systems (FMS) scheduling problems has been proven to be a promising approach. However, the NP-hard nat...

Robust Combined Adaptive and Variable Structure Adaptive Control of Robot Manipulators

Journal Article
Yu, H. (1998)
Robust Combined Adaptive and Variable Structure Adaptive Control of Robot Manipulators. Robotica, 16(6), 623-650. https://doi.org/10.1017/s0263574798000563
The paper addresses the robust adaptive control problem of robot manipulators. The dynamic equations of robot manipulators and their fundamental properties that facilitate ana...

Variable structure adaptive control of robot manipulators

Journal Article
Yu, H., & Lloyd, S. (1997)
Variable structure adaptive control of robot manipulators. IET Control Theory and Applications, 144(2), 167-176. https://doi.org/10.1049/ip-cta%3A19970803
The two main problems with variable-structure control are control input chattering and the assumption of known parameter uncertainty bounds, the second of which is studied. Th...

Combined direct and indirect adaptive control of constrained robots

Journal Article
Yu, H., & Lloyd, S. (1997)
Combined direct and indirect adaptive control of constrained robots. International Journal of Control, 68(5), 955-970. https://doi.org/10.1080/002071797223154
The force tracking error is dependent on both the position tracking error and the estimated parameter error so that, in constrained adaptive robot control, the convergence of ...

Pre-Napier Funded Projects

  • Intelligent fire robot research innovation plan, funded by the National Key Research and Development Plan of China
  • CHARMED - Characterisation of a green microenvironment and to study its impact upon health and well-being in the elderly as a way forward for health tourism (H2020-MSCA-RISE-2016-734684, €2,268,000, 2017-2020, CI)
  • Smart robots for fire-fighting (€909,000, 2017-2021, PI), Bournemouth University
  • First - Virtual factories: interoperation supporting business innovation (H2020-MSCA-RISE-2016-734599, €967,500, 2017-2020, CI)
  • Adaptive Learning Control of a Cardiovascular Robot using Expert Surgeon Techniques (IE151224), (£12 K from Newton Funds plus 100 K RMB from NSFC, 2016 –2019, PI)
  • Sensor-Integrated Urometer for measuring real-time urine output, HEIF project, (£40,000, HEIF funds, 2015 –2016, PI)
  • KTP (Knowledge Transfer Partnerships) with Time and Data Systems International Limited, (£130k, 2013 – 2015, PI)
  • FUSION - Featured eUrope and South asIa mObility Network (€3.05 million, funded by EU, 2013 –2018, project coordinator)
  • RABOT - Real-time adaptive networked control of rescue robots (€310.8 K, funded by EU, 2012 – 2016, project coordinator)
  • cLINK – Centre of Excellence for Learning, Innovation, Networking and Knowledge (€2.5 million, funded by EU, 2012 –2016, PI at Bournemouth University)
  • Sustainable E-Tourism, (€2.5 million, funded by EU, Oct 2010 – Sept 2014, PI at Staffordshire University)
  • eLINK – east-west Link for Innovation, Networking and Knowledge exchange, (€5.5 million, funded by EU, 2009 –2013, PI at Staffordshire University)
  • Smart Tele-operated Adaptive Fusion multi-Function System (STAFFS), A collaboration project with JCB / SELLAFIELD (Jointly Funded by Sellafield, JCB, and Staffordshire University, £10k, 2008 –2009, PI)
  • UK-Japan Network on Human Adaptive Mechatronics, (£158K, Funded by EPSRC, 2007 –2010, PI)
  • Funding to enable the MCDS research group to participate in EU FP7 consortia (£58k, EPSRC, 2007 –2010, PI)
  • Links with China on Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management (£20K, Funded by EPSRC, 2006 - 2007, CI)
  • Euro-Asia CollaboraTions and NetWorking in Information Engineering System Technology, FP6 Asia-Link (€300K, 2005 –2008, PI at Staffordshire University)
  • Academic Visits of Key Labs/Centres in Japan in Human Adaptive Mechatronics (£18K, Funded by EPSRC, 2005 –2005, PI)
  • Intelligent Automation, Computing and Manufacturing (£60K, Funded by EPSRC, 2004 –2008, CI)
  • Control Theory and Industrial Applications of Discrete Event Dynamics Systems (£36K - £18K, Funded by Royal Society and £18K Funded by CAS, 2003- 2006, PI);
  • European travel funding to enable the MOSAIC research centre to gain EU Framework Programme 6 funding (£12K, Funded by EPSRC, 2003 – 2004, CI)
  • Combined Adaptive and Robust Methods for Real-Time Control of Mechanical Linkage Systems (£60K, Funded by EPSRC, 1999 –2002, PI);

Current Post Grad projects

Non-Napier PhD or MSc by Research supervisions

  • Smart IoTs Based Urine Measurement System (MRes, RUSHAN ARSHAD)
  • Detection and Analysis of the Causal Relation between Tourism and Greenhouse Gas Emission: An Empirical Approach (MRes, Akanda Wahid -Ul- Ashraf)
  • An Automatic Wearable Multi-sensor based Gait Analysis System for Older Adults (PhD, Arif Reza Anwary)
  • Development of a Prototype Sensor-Integrated Urine Bag for Real-Time Measuring (MRes,Atigorn Sanguansri )
  • Impact of Assistive Technologies in Supporting People with Dementia (PhD, Ikram Asghar)
  • Modelling, Analysis and Design of MAC and Routing protocols for Wireless Body Area Sensor Networks (PhD, Muhammad Sajjad Akbar)
  • Enhancing the knowledge management practices among front line hotel employees through leadership and managerial behaviours (PhD, Saqib Shamim)
  • Evaluation of Kindness Tourism Adopted from Chinese Philosophy and Its Impact on Sustainable Tourism (MRes, Xiaomei Wang)
  • A Data Fusion-based Hybrid Sensory System for Older People’s Daily Activity Recognition (PhD, Yan Wang)
  • Bio-Inspired Robotic Control in Underactuation: Principles for Energy Efficacy, Dynamic Compliance Interactions and Adaptability (PhD, Pengcheng Liu)
  • An Intelligent Destination Recommendation System for Tourists (PhD, Pree Thiengburanathum)
  • Multi-sensor Activity Recognition of An Elderly Person (PhD, Saisakul Chernbumroong)
  • An Adaptive Framework for Improving the Effectiveness of Virtual Enterprises in the Supply Chain (PhD, Ariunbayar Samdantsoodol)
  • A Novel Propeller Design for Micro-Swimming robot (PhD, Fei Yuan)
  • Design, Analysis and Trajectory Tracking Control of Underactuated Mobile Capsule Robots (PhD, Md Nazmul Huda)
  • Modelling of Human Control and Performance Evaluation using Artificial Neural Network and Brainwave (PhD, Keattikorn Samarnggoon)
  • A Novel RFID Mutual Authentication Protocol and a Design of Encryption Circuit in Passive RFID Tags (Mres, Pham Anh Tuan)
  • Module- Modelling and motion control of a 2D pendulum-driven cart system (Mres, Wenjuan Ren)
  • E-Tourism Framework Using Information Communication Technology for Performance Measurement (Mres,Shiyu Qin)
  • Quality of Service for Multimedia and Control System Applications in Mobile Ad-hoc Network (PhD, Oche Alexander Egaji)
  • Research In The Field of RFID Technology Design Higher Performance Tags (Mres, Dechen Lhamo)
  • Research On The RFID Passive Tags Applied On The Metallic Substances And Containers With Liquids (Mres, Chencho)
  • Smart Antenna for RFID Systems (Mres, Tashi)
  • Integrated Information Systems using Emerging RFID Technology in the Hospitality Industry (Mres, Benjamin Adu)
  • Predictive Vehicular Networking for Intelligent Transportation Systems (Mres, Joarder Mohammad Mustafa Kamal)
  • Discovering Hidden Knowledge from Advertising Data (Mres, Mohammad Hasan Shaharear)
  • Dealing authentication towards securing cloud application (Mres, Dharmendra Kumar Mishra)
  • Wirelessly Controlled Capsubot Prototype (Mres, Md Nazmul Huda)
  • Effective Protocols for Privacy and Security in RFID Systems Applications (PhD, Md. Monzur Morshed)
  • A technology hub for auditing and tracking objects using RFID technology in waste management applications (PhD, Zhang, Lizong)
  • Applications of RFID technology in Health Care (Mres, Robert Steele)
  • RFID enabled constraint based scheduling for transport logistics (PhD, Nopon Choosri)
  • An Adaptive Simulation-based Decision-Making Framework for Small and Medium sized Enterprises (PhD, Xin Zheng )
  • Analysis and control of underactuated mechanical systems (PhD, Liu, Yang)
  • Application of control over Mobile Ad-hoc Network (PhD, Hasan, Mohammad Shahidul)
  • Develop a Pay-Per-Click Free-Donation Web Advertising Tool, (MRes, Jian Chen)
  • Robust neural network based movement prediction to support constant quality of service in multi-service, multi-tier cellular systems of the third generation (PhD, Bauer, Carolin Isabel)
  • The Efficient Storage and Supply of Data within a Cellular Framework for a Variety of Mobility and Usage Patterns (PhD, Champion, Justin James)
  • Effect of Oil Aeration on the Behaviour of Journal Bearing (PhD, Dali Dong)
  • Predictive iterative learning control(PhD, Townley, Tracy Yvette)
  • Modelling and Scheduling of Flexible Manufacturing Systems Using AI Technology (PhD, Antonio Reyes Moro)