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Mechatronics, Robotics and Embedded Systems (MSc)

Course Description

This is an MSc course in Embedded Systems with contributions from the fields of mechatronics and robotics.

Embedded systems are microprocessor-based systems within a larger mechanical or electrical system that performs a dedicated function or task. They encompass a wide variety of products ranging from small mobile phones to large process automation installations. A practicing engineer in the field of embedded systems needs to have a specialised expertise in more than one of the engineering subjects of this multi-discipline subject.

Our MSc is tailored to provide you with advanced learning in microprocessor systems that are at the heart of embedded systems, with additional contributions from the fields of mechatronics and robotics. This approach reflects the needs of the industry and is well supported by the range in expertise we have in our Department.

The Department of Engineering and Design covers the full gamete of teaching in electronic, telecommunication and computer networks engineering as well as mechanical engineering and product design.

Our academics are a cohesive group of highly skilled lecturers, practitioners and researchers. You'll benefit from your choice of supervisors to support a wide range of modern and multi-discipline Masters-level projects. Our teaching is supported by well-equipped laboratory workshops, using mostly the latest hardware and software available in universities.

- Robot Detectives
LSBU holds an international reputation as a world leader in the use of robotics in non-destructive testing and developing intelligent robotic systems. Groundbreaking projects have ranged from building wall climbing robots to robots that work under water and oil.

See the website http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/courses/course-finder/mechatronics-robotics-engineering-msc


- Embedded system design
This module shows you how to design and implement an Embedded System on a single IC. You will learn about the basics and the benefits of all programmable devices. The SOC (System on Chip) process flow is explained for FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays) stressing the role played by the Hardware Description Languages (HDL). The accompanying workshops demonstrate the use of tools and methodologies as well as the programming, verifying and protecting your designs. We use the commercial software Quartus II and QSYS and the hardware development platform DE2 by Altera.

- Individual project
The individual project is a major element of the course. It involves a wider spectrum of multidisciplinary research in design, manufacturing systems, quality management and IT, with due regard to the efficient exploitation of the technology, materials and marketing resources of industrial firms. Students are encouraged to work on industrial-based projects.

- Pattern recognition and machine learning
This module introduces the fundamentals of both statistical learning theory and practical approaches for solving pattern recognition problems. Further, it consolidates lectures with experimental computer-based workshops to inculcate the principles of machine learning and classification. The module covers: Bayesian decision theory, parametric density estimation, linear discriminant functions, perceptrons, support vector machines, neural networks and clustering.

- Microprocessor-based control and robotics
This module will provide information allowing you to critically evaluate and make the right choice of the microprocessor that will be at the heart of your embedded system. To this effect we provide a thorough discussion and qualitative comparison of the various microprocessor architectures and the methods of the software development available to you. The workshop assignments involve interfacing 8 and 32 bit microcontrollers to a wide range of devices, including robotic manipulators and control/measurement instrumentation.

- Electromechanical systems and manufacturing technology
This module consists of two parts. The first part covers the design of electromechanical components of the embedded system. The material presented here derives from the fields of Mechatronics and Robotics. The second part provides information on modern developments in the field of materials and the manufacturing. Examples of topics covered include applications of nano-technology, use of polymers and composites. Manufacturing techniques are described together with process modelling and control that is essential to produce the material to the required specification.

- Technology evaluation and commercialisation
This module includes: research product idea generation; product definition and value proposition; market research and assessment; functional assessment of product concepts; and strategic assessment of commercial viability.

- Technical, research and professional skills
This module includes: an introduction to project management, project planning, research project characteristics, ethics, feasibility analysis of requirements and resources; research methods; stages in project management; modelling and optimisation tools (PERT and CPM); technical report writing.

- Robotics
This module introduces you to the basic elements and principles of modern robotics. You'll gain a thorough theoretical and practical understanding of the fundamental concepts of this important and fast developing field. Essential geometric concepts will be introduced and these will be applied to the analysis and control of several different types of machines. A key feature of the module will be the wide range of robotic devices studied, from industrial serial manipulators, through mobile robots to quadcopters. The workshop for this modules includes various topics such as Robot Programming, Path Planning, Mapping and Localisation.

- MSc project
The individual project is a major element of the course. We offer a supervision of projects from a wide spectrum of either specialized or multi-disciplinary topics. There are opportunities for individual-centered projects as well for the student being allocated specific tasks within a larger research effort. Students are encouraged to work on industrial-based projects under joint supervision with their employer.


The course has been designed to help to meet the needs of industry. How much your employability will increase, will depend on your background and the personal contribution you make to your development whilst studying on the course.

Benefits for new graduates

If you are a new graduate in electronic or computer engineering then you benefit from the further advanced topics presented. You'll get an opportunity to cut your teeth on a challenging MSc Project, which will demonstrate your abilities to the potential employers. Alternatively, you could also pursue PhD studies after completing the course.

Benefits of returning to University after time working in industry

If you are returning to University after a period of working in industry, then you'll be able to update yourself with the recent technological progress in the field. You'll gain confidence in your ability to perform at your best and stand a better chance to seek challenging work opportunities. If you are already working in the field, the MSc qualification will enhance your status which will may help with your promotion. We are continually developing links with employers who are interested to provide internship to our students . Examples of this can include small VHDL and DSP designs, ARM based designs, industrial design or correlation research. These projects can be performed as part of the curriculum or as part of a research project.

LSBU Employability Services

LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:

- direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
- Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
- mentoring and work shadowing schemes. The School of Engineering at LSBU has a strong culture of research, extensive research links with industry through consultancy works and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs), and teaching content is closely related to the latest research findings in the field.

History and expertise

A strong research tradition and our industrial links has helped shaped the course design, content selection, course delivery and project supervision.

The Department of Engineering and Design has a strong Mechatronics, Robotics and Non-destructive testing research group with a wide national and international profile. This is in addition to excellent research in many areas of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, product design, computer network and telecommunications engineering.

Visit the Mechatronics, Robotics and Embedded Systems (MSc) page on the London South Bank University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

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