Quantum technology has been selected by the UK Government as a key area of innovation, moving science into real-world applications. The first phase of the UK National Quantum Technology initiative has received £350 million of government funding to create a flourishing industry in this area in the UK.
Four Quantum Technology Hubs have been established as flagship projects in this program. This postgraduate training programme is aligned with the UK National Quantum Technology Hub in Sensors and Metrology, an £80 million collaborative effort led by the University of Birmingham in partnership with the Universities of Glasgow, Nottingham, Southampton, Strathclyde and Sussex, the National Physical Laboratory and over 70 companies.
The MRes programme offers a unique opportunity for students to undertake a research-based Masters degree in a multi-disciplinary environment between science, engineering and industry. Students benefit from participating in both the technology translation and applied research activities carried out within the UK National Quantum Technology Hub in Sensors and Metrology, and from the educational programmes offered by the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences. The programme comprises classroom taught quantum physics-oriented modules for students with engineering backgrounds; technology-orientated modules for students with physics backgrounds; and an independent research project that is documented in a substantial thesis.
The research project consists of a team element; all students will organise themselves to present a technical demonstration at a national or international conference. There is also an individual research element, which takes place in industry or in relation to a participating company.
It will include 70 credits of classroom taught modules and a research project worth 110 credits, consisting of team and individual elements.
The team element of the research project teaches technical, team working, project management, communication and presentation skills with an emphasis on responsible research and innovation. The individual element of the research project focuses on problems relevant to industry and will be carried out in close collaboration with industry partners.
The Birmingham led UK National Quantum Technology Hub in Sensors and Metrology is a cross-disciplinary centre, involving staff from the Schools of Physics, Civil, Electrical and Materials Engineering, as well as staff from a number of other Schools across the University. It will translate fundamental science and applied research in quantum sensors and metrology based on atomic probe particles, providing high level educational opportunities in these fields.
The Hub’s research activities include research in the development of sensors for gravity, magnetic fields, rotation, electromagnetic fields and time. It also researches their applications in a diverse range of sectors including aviation, communication, construction, defense, energy, finance, healthcare, oil and mineral exploration, transport and space.
The Translational Quantum Technology programme aims at preparing students for the challenges in translating quantum sensors and metrology devices based on atoms as probe particles into real-world applications. After the programme, students should understand the underpinning science and technology; the needs of end-user applicants; and the impact of these quantum technology devices on society. They should be able to move seamlessly between academia and industry, and translate scientific outcomes into technology.
The programme will create a strongly networked cohort of students with practical experience in academia and industry. It aims:
This programme is a unique opportunity to acquire translational skills, including specific skills of relevance to the emerging quantum technology industry. The UK National Quantum Technology Hub in Sensors is actively engaged with a growing number of industry partners, currently standing at 70 companies from various sectors of the economy. Industry secondments to our partners will foster career prospects.
The MSc (sandwich) Sensors, Data and Management is an innovative programme designed to be an interface between the University and Industry. It provides appropriate training in leadership skills in addition to the technical learning gained through the taught modules and industry placement.
The Photonic Integrated Circuits, Sensors and NETworks (PIXNET) Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree is a two-year programme (120 ECTS) aimed at training talented students in the design, creation and assessment of innovative integrated devices based on photonic technologies. The set of learning outcomes include the theoretical design of system/network devices, the design and simulation of a photonic integrated circuit, fabrication in a clean room facility and the packaging and final testing of the prototypes.
PIXNET intends to be an interdisciplinary, multi-national initiative, training young telecommunication and electrical engineers to investigate the adoption of Photonic Integrated Circuit (PIC) as the central element in the evolution of information and communication devices (e.g. Data Centers, mobile terminals, etc.).
PIXNET offer is very valuable for prospective new students, who will enjoy an extremely rich teaching programme, comprising traditional classes, experience in clean-room facilities and interaction with a very wide choice of associated partners.
PIXNET encompasses a wide range of topics and expertise related to the development of highly-skilled “photonic engineers for communication and sensing”. At the end of the learning activities, students will have mastered the following areas:Optical communication,Optical network architectures,Optical components, Optical signal processing and Photonic integration technologies.
They will have acquired advanced optical networking skills and will be fully able to plan, design, manage and support photonic device technologies. Students will be capable of developing proper interdisciplinary connections between the areas of telecommunication networks, micro-opto-electronics, and systems design. They will acquire theoretical and practical design skills for the operation and maintenance of network systems and device fabrication. Regarding photonic integration, the exposure to different fabrication facilities will allow students to understand both the different technologic steps and the environment in which production platforms of integrated devices are standardized.
The PIXNET study programme is divided into four semesters. 30 ECTS can be gained for each semester. The first three semesters are based on traditional courses, lab exercises and laboratory sessions, while the final semester is based on independent work related to the Master’s thesis.
Six different curricula are available depending on the mobility options selected, and each curriculum requires the completion of four modules, each corresponding to one semester. Except for mobility path n. 5, the first year of the Master's (i.e. the first and second semester of the Master's course) will be spent in the same Programme-country institution. The third semester of the Master's will be spent in a different institution, while the Master’s thesis can be done in the same or in another institution.
The partners that participate in this Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree are:
Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna (Pisa, Italy), SSSA, Coordinator
Aston University (Birmingham, UK), ASTON
Technische Universiteit Eindhoven (The Netherlands), TUE
Osaka University (Japan), OSAKA
You can apply for the position here: http://pixnet.santannapisa.it/apply/apply-here/
Microsystems Engineering is one of the most dynamic and interdisciplinary engineering fields. The Master of Science program in Microsystems Engineering (MSE) provides the educational basis for your success in this field. The MSE program is designed for highly qualified graduate students holding a Bachelor degree in engineering or science.
In the first year 12 mandatory courses provide the fundamental theoretical framework for a future career in Microsystems. These courses are designed to provide students with a broad knowledge base in the most important aspects of the field:
• MSE technologies and processes
• MSE design laboratory I
• Optical Microsystems
• Probability and statistics
• Assembly and packaging technology
• Dynamics of MEMS
• Biomedical Microsystems
• MSE design laboratory II
• Signal processing
As part of the mandatory courses, the Microsystems design laboratory is a two-semester course in which small teams of students undertake a comprehensive, hands-on design project in Microsystems engineering. Requiring students to address all aspects of the generation of a microsystem, from conceptualization, through project planning to fabrication and testing, this course provides an essential glimpse into the workings of engineering projects.
In the second year, MSE students can specialise in two of the following seven concentration areas (elective courses), allowing each student to realize individual interests and to obtain an in-depth look at two sub-disciplines of this very broad, interdisciplinary field:
• Circuits and systems
• Design and simulation
• Life sciences: Biomedical engineering
• Life sciences: Lab-on-a-chip
• Process engineering
• Sensors and actuators
Below are some examples of subjects offered in the concentration areas. These subjects do not only include theoretical lectures, but also hands-on courses such as labs, projects and seminars.
Circuits and Systems
• Analog CMOS Circuit Design
• Mixed-Signal CMOS Circuit Design
• VLSI – System Design
• RF- und Microwave Devices and Circuits
• Radio sensor systems
• Optoelectronic devices
• Reliability Engineering
• Advanced topics in Macro-, Micro- and Nano-optics
Design and Simulation
• Topology optimization
• Compact Modelling of large Scale Systems
• Lattice Gas Methods
• Particle Simulation Methods
• VLSI – System Design
• Hardware Development using the finite element method
• Computer-Aided Design
Life Sciences: Biomedical Engineering
• Signal processing and analysis of brain signals
• Neurophysiology I: Measurement and Analysis of Neuronal Activity
• Neurophysiology II: Electrophysiology in Living Brain
• DNA Analytics
• Basics of Electrostimulation
• Implant Manufacturing Techologies
• Biomedical Instrumentation I
• Biomedical Instrumentation II
Life Sciences: Lab-on-a-chip
• DNA Analytics
• Biochip Technologies
• Bio fuel cell
• Micro-fluidics 2: Platforms for Lab-on-a-Chip Applications
• Microstructured polymer components
• Test structures and methods for integrated circuits and microsystems
• Quantum mechanics for Micro- and Macrosystems Engineering
• Microsystems Analytics
• From Microsystems to the nano world
• Techniques for surface modification
• Semiconductor Technology and Devices
• Advanced silicon technologies
• Piezoelectric and dielectric transducers
Sensors and Actuators
• Nonlinear optic materials
• CMOS Microsystems
• Quantum mechanics for Micro- and Macrosystems Engineering
• Bionic Sensors
• Energy harvesting
• Electronic signal processing for sensors and actuators
Essential for the successful completion of the Master’s degree is submission of a Master’s thesis, which is based on a project performed during the third and fourth semesters of the program. Each student works as a member of one of the 18 research groups of the department, with full access to laboratory and cleanroom infrastructure.
The Robotics MSc allows you to gain specialist knowledge relating to robotics and automation applications by examining the integration of mechanical devices, sensors, electronics and ‘intelligent’ computer-based controllers. You will also explore the latest developments in robotics while completing research and development work for your individual research project. You will complete the course in one year, studying September to September and taking a combination of required and optional modules totalling 180 credits, including 60 credits that will come from an individual project of 15,000 words. You will study robotic systems, computer vision, sensors and actuators, real-time systems and control. There are also opportunities to explore a broad range of optional modules allowing you the freedom to develop your study pathway to reflect your interests.
Robotics is a multi-disciplinary activity dealing with the integration of mechanical devices, sensors, electronics and ‘intelligent’ computer-based controllers. The programme is therefore built around core modules such as Robotic Systems, Computer Vision, Sensors and Actuators, Real Time Systems and Control, which are complemented by a wide range of optional modules. The final part of the programme is an individual project that is closely linked with the Department’s research activities.
For graduates in engineering or a related scientific discipline, from this programme you will gain an awareness of the latest developments in Robotics while completing research and development work for your individual research project. This will provide valuable preparation for a career in research or industry.
We use lectures, seminars and group tutorials to deliver most of the modules on the programme. You will also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study.
You are expected to spend approximately 150 hours of effort (i.e. about 10 hours per credit) for each module you attend in your degree. These 150 hours cover every aspect of the module: lectures, tutorials, lab-based exercises, independent study based on personal and provided lecture notes, tutorial preparation and completion of exercises, coursework preparation and submission, examination revision and preparation, and examinations.
Assessment methods will depend on the modules selected. The primary methods of assessment for this course are written examinations and coursework. You may also be assessed by practical laboratory examinations, laboratory reports and oral presentations.
Via the Department’s Careers Programme students are able to network with top employers and obtain advice on how to enhance career prospects. Our graduates have continued on to have very successful careers in industry and research, working areas such as manufacturing, automotive and aerospace. Recent employers include Cummins Inc. and Transport Alstom.
The Institute for Bioengineering (IBioE) connects Engineering, Physical Sciences, Biology and Medicine, for innovative diagnostic and therapeutic biomedical devices and technologies.
Research themes include:
Synthetic Biology - to design and construct (e.g. to ‘engineer’) biological devices and systems, often at cellular level. Applications range from therapeutic to environmental.
Tissue Engineering - the production of 3D or 2D scaffolds or guidance cues for biological cells. Applications are largely therapeutic and also include new forms of lab-on-chip technology.
Biomedical Modelling and Measurement - understanding biological materials through modelling and measurement for applications in, for example, prosthetics, prediction of failure in blood vessels and the behaviour of bone with ageing. We also study the behaviour of biological materials experimentally and in most cases, non-invasively (e.g. via Raman and CARS spectroscopy).
Biomedical Devices and Sensors - working with colleagues in chemistry, we develop sensors on silicon for simple biological parameters (e.g. oxygen concentration) along with sensors of specific biomarkers of disease and therapy.
The development of transferable skills is a vital part of postgraduate training and a vibrant, interdisciplinary training programme is offered to all research students by the University’s Institute for Academic Development (IAD). The programme concentrates on the professional development of postgraduates, providing courses directly linked to postgraduate study.
Courses run by the IAD are free and have been designed to be as flexible as possible so that you can tailor the content and timing to your own requirements.
Our researchers are strongly encouraged to present their research at conferences and in journal during the course of their PhD.
Every year, the Graduate School organises a Postgraduate Research Conference to showcase the research carried out by students across the Research Institutes
Our researchers are also encouraged and supported to attend transferable skills courses provided by organisations such as the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).
An MSc by Research is based on a research project tailored to a candidate’s interests. It lasts one year full time or two years part time. The project can be a shorter alternative to an MPhil or PhD, or a precursor to either – including the option of an MSc project expanding into MPhil or doctorate work as it evolves. It can also be a mechanism for industry to collaborate with the School.
This course provides education and training in selected military electronic systems. It is particularly suitable for those who will be involved with the specification, analysis, development, technical management or operation of military radar, electro-optics, communications, sonar or information systems, where the emphasis will be on an Electronic Warfare environment.
The course is intended for officers of the armed forces and for scientists and technical officers in government defence establishments and the defence industry. It is particularly suitable for those who, in their subsequent careers, will be involved with the specification, analysis, development, technical management or operation of military radar, electro-optics, communications, sonar or information systems, where the emphasis will be on an Electronic Warfare environment.
Students taking the Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) course variant are able to choose to study, and will be awarded, either the PgCert in Communications Electronic Warfare or PgCert in Sensors Electronic Warfare.
A Military Electronic Systems Engineering graduate achieves a high level of understanding and detailed knowledge of military communications and sensor systems with particular regard to electronic warfare. In addition, the MSc course enables the student to carry out an in-depth investigation into an area of electronic warfare to further enhance their analytical capability. Successful graduates of this course should be fully equipped for roles in defence intelligence, systems development and acquisition, involving the specification and analysis of such systems, working individually or as part of a team.
The MSc/PGDip taught phase comprises 10 compulsory modules and a choice of either Information Networks and Advanced Radar, or, Aeronautical Engineering Parts 1 and 2.
MSc students must complete a taught phase consisting of twelve modules, followed by an individual dissertation in a relevant topic. PgDip students must complete a taught phase consisting of twelve modules. PgCert students must complete a taught phase consisting of six specified modules.
The project aim is for the student to undertake an extensive analytical research project using appropriate research methodology, involving simulation and modelling, measurements, experimentation, data collection and analysis. This will enable students to develop and demonstrate their technical expertise, independent learning abilities and critical research skills in a specialist subject area relevant to the field of study of the course.
by examination, assignments and thesis.
This course is typically a requirement for progression for certain engineering and technical posts within UK MOD.
Successful graduates of this course should be fully equipped for roles in defence intelligence, systems development and acquisition, involving the specification and analysis of such systems, working individually or as part of a team either in the military or in the defence industry.