Mechatronics, robotics and autonomous systems represent a range of important technologies which underpin many applications – from manufacturing and automation through to self-driving cars and robotic surgical tools.
Delivered by the Schools of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computing, this programme will equip you with the specialist knowledge and wide range of skills to pursue a career in this dynamic field.
Core modules will give you a foundation in the many applications of mechatronics and robotics and develop your understanding of the wide range of industry sectors that use robotics. You’ll also build research skills with a major project in fields as diverse as robot swarms, sensing systems, bio-inspired robots and surgical robotics.
Diverse optional modules will allow you to focus on topics that suit your interests and career plans, guided by academics whose teaching is informed by their own world-class research.
The Faculty of Engineering is an exciting and stimulating environment where you’ll learn in specialist facilities. These include an ABB robotic manufacturing cell, the Embedded Systems Lab, the Keysight Technologies Communications Lab, the National Instruments LabVIEW Academy, and computer clusters with a very wide range of industry-standard CAD/CAE/CAM software packages.
The three Schools that deliver this programme collaborate in research projects within the themes of surgical robotics, rehabilitation robotics, exploration robotics and future cities.
Three core modules act as the foundations of the course, developing your understanding of key aspects of mechatronics and robotics and how they fit into the context of the full range of industrial sectors and rapidly-developing everyday applications.
Mechatronics and Robotics Applications will look at the challenges, problems and solutions involved in integrating components such as actuators and computer control into modern engineering systems in domains such as healthcare and the automotive industry.
To build your understanding of the global industry and career opportunities, you’ll also complete a dissertation in a topic of your choice. This is supported by a series of lectures that cover the principles of globalisation, industry sectors, manufacturing, business models, teamwork skills and entrepreneurship. This could take the form of a business, manufacturing or outsourcing plan, a proposal for research funding or an essay on a specific aspect of the industry.
Over the summer months you’ll also work on your research project. This gives you the chance to work on a project allied to one of our research groups, spanning an exceptionally wide range of areas ranging from computer vision and artificial intelligence through robotic communications, sensing and embedded systems to mechanical design, industrial inspection, biomedical engineering and surgical robotics.
You’ll complete your studies by selecting from a range of optional modules that allow you to focus on topics that suit your personal interests or career intentions. You could build your understanding of computational methods, medical robotics, control systems design and more.
Want to find out more about your modules?
Take a look at the Mechatronics and Robotics module descriptions for more detail on what you will study.
Our groundbreaking research feeds directly into teaching, and you’ll have regular contact with staff who are at the forefront of their disciplines. You’ll have regular contact with them through lectures, seminars, tutorials, small group work and project meetings. Independent study is also important to the programme, as you develop your problem-solving and research skills as well as your subject knowledge.
You’ll be assessed using a range of techniques including case studies, technical reports, presentations, in-class tests, assignments and exams. Optional modules may also use alternative assessment methods.
Mechatronics and robotics is a multidisciplinary field with a strong future, exciting career opportunities and a huge range of applications in robotics, manufacturing, automation, automotive engineering, aerospace, healthcare and medicine, leisure & entertainment and many more.
After graduating from this course, you will be in a good position to seek employment as a development, project or graduate engineer with leading organisations such as GCHQ, JN Bentley, Oilger Towler Ltd, Airbus UK, Avesta, Crosslee Plc, ABB Ltd, AWE, Ricardo, APV Baker, Jaguar Land Rover and Jacobs Engineering.
You’ll have access to the wide range of engineering and computing careers resources held by our Employability team in our dedicated Employability Suite. You’ll have the chance to attend industry presentations book appointments with qualified careers consultants and take part in employability workshops. Our annual Engineering and Computing Careers Fairs provide further opportunities to explore your career options with some of the UK’s leading employers.
The University's Careers Centre also provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
This course is for students who already have a strong engineering background and wish to specialise in robotics and automation. This course has a particular emphasis on advanced robotics, where robots are designed to operate with a degree of intelligence.
You will gain a firm grounding in control engineering and intelligent systems concepts, along with the ability to comprehend and fully specify integrated automation systems embodying intelligence, robotic and automation hardware and software, and virtual reality (VR)/simulation technologies.
The course also provides a suitable background for research in advanced autonomous systems with reference to robotics.
You will be taught via a series of lectures and workshops with many of the modules taught via extensive hands-on practical lab-based sessions.
Practical experience includes the use of robotics platforms to produce a software system using the MATLAB toolboxes or the C programming language or to produce a finished hardware/software based mobile robotics system.
70% coursework and 30% examination.
There are dedicated labs and facilities for Robotics and Automation students, including: Industrial robots, flexi-picker, manipulators (Hitachi, KUKA) humanoid robots plus many mobile robots. Plus dedicated computing facilities
And if you do your MSc Project with an aerospace company, as many of our students do, then you will also have access to their facilities.
Graduates from this course can expect to find employment in a range of industries. Robotics and automation are continuously developing topics that present many career opportunities in areas such as robotic design, control systems integration and design, factory automation, engineering management and research.
Many of our students work on final year projects in conjunction with aeronautical companies associated with the University.
Many of our students go on to further study at the Centre for Advanced Robotics which is very closely linked with this course.
Robots have the potential to revolutionise society and the economy, working for us, beside us, and interacting with us. This EPSRC-sponsored programme will produce graduates with the technical skills and industry awareness to create an innovation pipeline from academic research to global markets.
The robotics and autonomous systems area has been highlighted by the UK Government in 2013 as one of the eight Great Technologies that underpin the UK's Industrial Strategy for jobs and growth. Key application areas include manufacturing, assistive and medical robots, offshore energy, environmental monitoring, search and rescue, defence, and support for the ageing population.
The University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University are jointly offering this innovative four-year PhD training programme, which combines a strong general grounding in current theory, methods and applications with flexibility for individualised study and a specialised PhD project.
Robotics and autonomous systems are increasingly studied beyond the range of classical engineering. Today robots represent one of the main areas of application of computer science and provide challenges for mathematics and natural science.
It is impossible to imagine transportation, warehousing, safety systems, space and marine exploration, prosthetics, and many other areas of industry, technology and science without robots. Robots are used in theoretical biology and the neurosciences as a model of behaviour.
Areas of interest specific to the center include: movement control, planning, decision making, bio- and neurorobotics, human-robot interaction, healthcare applications, robot soccer, neuroprosthetics, underwater robotics, bipedal walking, service robots, robotic co-workers, computer vision, speech processing, computer animation realistic simulations, and machine learning.
Many more topics can be found be exploring the Centre’s web pages, particularly the personal web pages of the Centre supervisors:
Our four-year PhD programme combines Masters level coursework and project work with independent PhD-level research.
In the first year, you will undertake four or five masters level courses, spread throughout robotics, machine learning, computational neuroscience, computer architectures, statistics, optimization, sensorics, dynamics, mechanics, image processing, signal processing, modelling, animation, artificial intelligence, and related areas. You will also undertake a significant introductory research project. (Students with previous masters-level work in these areas may request to take less courses and a larger project.)
At the end of the first year, successful students will be awarded an MSc by Research by the University of Edinburgh. From this basis, the subsequent three years will be spent developing and pursuing a PhD research project, under the close supervision of your primary and secondary supervisors. The PhD will be awarded jointly by the University of Edinburgh and the Heriot-Watt University.
You will have opportunities for three to six month internships with leading companies in your area, and to participate in our industrial engagement programme, exchanging ideas and challenges with our sponsor companies.
Throughout your studies, you will participate in our regular programmes of seminars, short talks and brainstorming sessions, and benefit from our pastoral mentoring schemes.
Our user partners in industry include companies working in offshore energy, environmental monitoring, defence, assisted living, transport, advanced manufacturing and education. They will provide the real world context for research, as well as opportunities for reciprocal secondments, internships and involvement in our industrial engagement programme.
The School of Informatics holds a Silver Athena SWAN award, in recognition of our commitment to advance the representation of women in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. The School is deploying a range of strategies to help female staff and students of all stages in their careers and we seek regular feedback from our research community on our performance.
You will have access to the outstanding facilities in the Edinburgh Robotarium, a national facility for research into robot interaction, supporting the research of more than 50 world-leading investigators from 17 cross-disciplinary research groups.
Research groups at the Edinburgh Robotarium include humanoid movement control, underwater, land and airborne autonomous vehicles, human robot interaction, bio- and neuro-robotics, and planning and decision making in multirobot scenarios.
In addition, our research groups contain a diverse range of compute clusters for compute and data-intensive work, including a large cluster hosted by the Edinburgh Compute and Data Facility.
Our aim is to produce innovation-ready graduates who are skilled in the principles of technical and commercial disruption and who understand how finance and organisation realise new products in start-up, SME and corporate situations.
We intend for our graduates to become leaders in the globally emerging market for autonomous and robotic systems that reduce risk, reduce cost, increase profit and protect the environment. This vision is shared by our industrial supporters, whose support for our internship programme indicates their strong desire to find highly qualified new employees.
Our component research groups already have excellent track-records in post-graduation destinations, including the research labs of industry-leading companies, and post-doctoral research positions in top tier universities.
Automation, control and robotics are pervasive enabling technologies found in almost every modern technical system, particularly in manufacturing and production. They combine the diverse and rapidly expanding disciplines of automation, control, mechanics, software and signal processing.
This course is ideal if you wish to develop comprehensive knowledge and understanding of • classical and modern control theory • industrial automation • systems analysis • design and simulation • robotics.
You gain the ability to apply principles of modelling, classical and modern control concepts and controller design packages in various areas of industry. You also learn how to design and exploit automation and robotic systems in a range of manufacturing and industrial applications.
The course has six core modules which cover the major aspects of industrial automation and control systems engineering and robotics, ranging from classical linear control system design to non-linear, optimal and intelligent control systems, including distributed control systems, robotics, computer networks and artificial intelligence.
You also choose two optional modules relevant to automation and control to suit your interests. For example, if you wish to work in the manufacturing industry you can choose manufacturing systems or machine vision. There is the opportunity to study one or two management modules if you wish to apply yourself to a more managerial role.
To gain the masters you complete a major research-based project, which can be focused on an area of your particular interest or career need.
You work alongside staff from the Electrical, Electronic and Control Engineering Group and the Centre for Automation and Robotics Research (CARR) at Sheffield Hallam. This provides the opportunity to work with active researchers.
This course is seeking accreditation by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer. The MSc will meet, in part, the exemplifying academic benchmark requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer; graduates who have a BEng (Hons) accredited for CEng will be able to show that they have satisfied the further learning requirement for CEng accreditation.
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This course provides you with the knowledge and skills for further advanced study in this area.
You can also apply your skills in an industrial setting for automated manufacturing, control system design, or in the wide range of industries that exploit intelligent robotics. Graduates from this course find career opportunities in areas including • automation and control • process and petrochemical • biomedical • manufacturing • energy • automotive • aerospace.
You can also pursue careers in engineering design and development, engineering research, engineering consultancy and engineering management.
Completing this course combined with further work-based experience enables you to gain Chartered Engineer status.