The University of Bradford is a public, plate glass university located in the city of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. The university received its Royal Charter in 1966, making it the 40th university to be created in Britain, but its origins date back to the early 19th century. There are two campuses: the main campus located on Richmond Road and the School of Management, at Emm Lane.The student population includes 10,525 undergraduate and 3,050 postgraduate students. Mature students make up around a third of the undergraduate community. 22% of students are foreign, and come from over 110 different countries. There were 14,406 applications to the university through UCAS in 2010, of which 3,421 were accepted.It was the first British university to establish a Department of Peace Studies in 1973, which is currently the world's largest university centre for the study of peace and conflict. The division has a reputation as a centre of excellence in peace research, international relations, security studies, conflict resolution and development and peace studies. Wikipedia.
Lost Frontiers - Europes Lost Frontiers: exploring climate change, settlement and colonisation of the submerged landscapes of the North Sea basin using ancient DNA, seismic mapping and complex systems modelling
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERC-ADG | Phase: ERC-ADG-2014 | Award Amount: 2.50M | Year: 2015
The only lands on Earth that have not been explored in any depth by science are those that have been lost to the oceans. Global warming at the end of the last Ice Age led to the inundation of vast landscapes that had once been home to thousands of people. These lost lands hold a unique and largely unexplored record of settlement and colonisation linked to climate change over millennia. Amongst the most significant is Doggerland. Occupying much of the North Sea basin between continental Europe and Britain it would have been a heartland of human occupation and central to the process of re-settlement and colonisation of north Western Europe during the Mesolithic and the Neolithic. Within this submerged landscape lies fragmentary yet valuable evidence for the lifestyles of its inhabitants including the changes resulting from both the encroaching sea and the introduction of Neolithic technologies. This inundated landscape cannot be explored conventionally, however pioneering work by the applicants research group has led to the rediscovery of Doggerland through the creation of the first detailed topographic maps relating to human occupation in the Early Holocene. Within this project world-leading innovators in the fields of archaeo-geophysics, molecular biology and computer simulation will develop a ground-breaking new paradigm for the study of past environments, ecological change and the transition between hunter gathering societies and farming in north west Europe. It will: 1) use the latest seismic reflectance data available to generate topographical maps of the whole of early Holocene Doggerland that are as accurate and complete as possible. 2) reconstruct and simulate the palaeo-environments of Doggerland using ancient DNA extracted directly from sediment cores. 3) explore the Mesolithic landscapes and also identify incipient Neolithic signals indicating early contact and development within the region of Doggerland.
Agency: GTR | Branch: EPSRC | Program: | Phase: Fellowship | Award Amount: 721.30K | Year: 2016
My proposed Fellowship will revolutionise the use of High Performance Computing (HPC) within The University of Sheffield by changing perceptions of how people utilise software and are trained and supported in writing code which scales to increasingly large computer systems. I will provide leadership by demonstrating the effectiveness of specific research software engineer roles, and by growing a team of research software engineer at The University of Sheffield in order to accommodate our expanding programme of research computing. I will achieve this by: 1) developing the FLAME and FLAME GPU software to facilitate and demonstrate the impact of Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) computing on the areas of complex systems simulation; 2) vastly extending the remit of GPUComputing@Sheffield to provide advanced training and research consultancy, and to embed specific software engineering skills for high-performance data parallel computing (with GPUs and Xeon Phis) across EPSRC-remit research areas at The University of Sheffield. My first activity will enable long-term support of the extensive use of FLAME and FLAME GPU for EPSRC, industry and EU-funded research projects. The computational science and engineering projects supported will include those as diverse as computational economics, bioinformatics and transport simulation. Additionally, my software will provide a platform for more fundamental computer science research into complexity science, graphics and visualisation, programming languages and compilers, and software engineering. My second activity will champion GPU computing within The University of Sheffield (and beyond to its collaborators and industrial partners). It will demonstrate how a specific area of research software engineering can be embedded into The University of Sheffield, and act as a model for further improvement in areas such as research software and data storage. I will change the way people develop and use research software by providing training to students and researchers who can then embed GPU software engineering skills across research domains. I will also aid researchers who work on computationally demanding research by providing software engineering consultancy in areas that can benefit from GPU acceleration, such as, mobile GPU computing for robotics, deep neural network simulation for machine learning (including speech, hearing and Natural language processing) and real time signal processing. The impact of my Fellowship will vastly expand the scale and quality of research computing at The University of Sheffield, embed skills within students and researchers (with long-term and wide-reaching results) and ensure energy-efficient use of HPC. This will promote the understanding and wider use of GPU computing within research, as well as transitioning researchers to larger regional and national HPC facilities. Ultimately my research software engineer fellowship will facilitate the delivery of excellent science whilst promoting the unique and important role of the Research Software Engineer.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2015-ETN | Award Amount: 3.45M | Year: 2015
The continuous trend towards miniaturization and multi-functionality embedded in products and processes calls for an ever increasing innovation, research and development within the European manufacturing sector. A necessary condition for the European productive sector to be at the global forefront of technology, ensuring job creation and sustainable growth, is to have access to innovative, entrepreneurial, highly skilled research engineers in the fields of micro manufacturing and micro product/process development. The MICROMAN ITN will provide world excellent research training to 13 ESR in the field of micro manufacturing proposing: (1) innovative technological solutions for high quality and high throughput micro production (micro manufacturing process fingerprint, zero-defect net-shape micro manufacturing) for the micro manufacturing industry; (2) cutting edge inter-disciplinary training in different domains (-polymer moulding, -metal forming, -extrusion, -tooling technologies, -product metrology, -manufacturing process metrology); (3) validation of different micro manufacturing processes by integration into process chains for the production of micro component for the bio-medical, health-care, machine tool, pharmaceutical, quality control sectors. The training strategy is based on the 50-30-20 principle, in which each single ESR will develop a core technical competence, a complementary technical competence, and a general technical competence in all domains addressed by the project with a research effort proportional to the 50%-30%-20% of the total effort. An all-round, comprehensive yet specialized, training in micro manufacturing will be ensured. Specific training on project engineering research management and entrepreneurship completes the training and provides the ESR the required skills to effectively contribute to the competitiveness of the European micro manufacturing industry, and in turn to job creation and well-being of the European society.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2016 | Award Amount: 3.27M | Year: 2017
SECRET is a collaborative European Training Network (ETN) committed to create an excellent educational training platform; that is multi-disciplinary and intersectoral in nature, for Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) in the field of wireless communications and networking. In this dynamic field, the challenges are always evolving and more stringent in line with market expectation, and socio-economical requirements. The chapter of 4G (4th Generation) of mobile systems is finally coming to an end, with waves of 4G systems deployed over Europe and worldwide. 4G systems provide a universal platform for broadband mobile services at any time, any place and anywhere. However, mobile traffic is still growing at an unprecedented rate and the need for more sophisticated broadband services is still further pushing the limits on current standards to provide even tighter integration between wireless technologies and higher speeds. The increase in number of mobile devices and traffic, the change in the nature of service and device, along with the pressure on operation and capital costs, and energy efficiency are all continuously putting stringent limits on the requirement of the design of mobile networks. It is widely accepted that incremental enhancements of current networking paradigm will not achieve or come close to meeting the requirements of networking by 2020 . This has led to the need of a new generation of mobile communications: the so-called 5G. The interests of stakeholders and academic researchers are now focused on 5G paradigm. Although 5G systems are not expected to penetrate the market till 2020, the evolution towards 5G is widely accepted to be the convergence of internet services with existing mobile networking standards leading to the commonly used term mobile internet over heterogeneous networks (HetNets), with very high connectivity speeds. This proposal aims to narrow the gap between current networking technologies and the foreseen requirements of future 2
Agency: GTR | Branch: BBSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 321.51K | Year: 2016
The development of modern brain imaging techniques, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), has given neuroscientists unparalleled access to the inner workings of the living human brain. Visual processing in particular has proven to be particularly amenable to study with fMRI. Studies using this technique have revealed the existence of different networks in the brain that are activated by different kinds of visual stimuli, such as motion, colour, faces, objects and so forth. In this research project we are interested in how the brain analyses information about moving stimuli. The analysis of motion within our visual environment is vitally important to our interaction with the outside world. It provides us with a rich source of information that helps us orientate ourselves within our surroundings, aiding in the avoidance as well as in the recognition of objects as we move around in this environment. The importance of motion perception is reflected by the fact brain imaging experiments reveal that when we look at moving stimuli, this generates neural activity across a large number of visual areas within the brain. Many of these brain areas contain their own individual representation of the outside world or visual field. But it seems unlikely, not to say inefficient, that each of these brain areas performs exactly the same kind of analysis and contributes in exactly the same way to our perception of motion. Yet precisely what roles these different areas do play in our perception of motion, is far from clear. Whilst fMRI provides us with an excellent means by which we can localise and map different areas across the visual brain, it is less well suited to providing information as to whether neural activity within a particular brain area is crucial for perception or behaviour. However, these kinds of direct or causal links can be made when fMRI is combined with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). TMS is a non-invasive and non-harmful technique which can bring about transient disruption of neural function in small areas of the brain. If this neural activity is important for perception, then its disruption can induce impairments in the ability of human observers to performance specific visual tasks, such a determining the direction motion of stimulus, for example. Experimental evidence from the monkey brain has shown that different motion areas are responsive to different kinds of moving stimuli such as left-right (translational) motion, optic flow (a kind of radial motion produced on the retina as we physically move through our environment) or boundaries defined by moving stimuli. This work has provided a theoretical framework within which the organisation of motion processing can be studied in the human brain. Using our fMRI-guided TMS approach we aim to establish direct relationships between neural activity within particular brain areas and the ability to perceive different kinds of moving stimuli. In so doing we aim to provide a more complete description as to how each of these brain areas that are responsive to motion contribute to its perception.
Beggs C.B.,University of Bradford
BMC Medicine | Year: 2013
Venous abnormalities contribute to the pathophysiology of several neurological conditions. This paper reviews the literature regarding venous abnormalities in multiple sclerosis (MS), leukoaraiosis, and normal-pressure hydrocephalus (NPH). The review is supplemented with hydrodynamic analysis to assess the effects on cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) dynamics and cerebral blood flow (CBF) of venous hypertension in general, and chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) in particular.CCSVI-like venous anomalies seem unlikely to account for reduced CBF in patients with MS, thus other mechanisms must be at work, which increase the hydraulic resistance of the cerebral vascular bed in MS. Similarly, hydrodynamic changes appear to be responsible for reduced CBF in leukoaraiosis. The hydrodynamic properties of the periventricular veins make these vessels particularly vulnerable to ischemia and plaque formation.Venous hypertension in the dural sinuses can alter intracranial compliance. Consequently, venous hypertension may change the CSF dynamics, affecting the intracranial windkessel mechanism. MS and NPH appear to share some similar characteristics, with both conditions exhibiting increased CSF pulsatility in the aqueduct of Sylvius.CCSVI appears to be a real phenomenon associated with MS, which causes venous hypertension in the dural sinuses. However, the role of CCSVI in the pathophysiology of MS remains unclear. © 2013 Beggs; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
McIlhagga W.,University of Bradford
International Journal of Computer Vision | Year: 2011
Canny (IEEE Trans. Pattern Anal. Image Proc. 8(6):679-698, 1986) suggested that an optimal edge detector should maximize both signal-to-noise ratio and localization, and he derived mathematical expressions for these criteria. Based on these criteria, he claimed that the optimal step edge detector was similar to a derivative of a gaussian. However, Canny's work suffers from two problems. First, his derivation of localization criterion is incorrect. Here we provide a more accurate localization criterion and derive the optimal detector from it. Second, and more seriously, the Canny criteria yield an infinitely wide optimal edge detector. The width of the optimal detector can however be limited by considering the effect of the neighbouring edges in the image. If we do so, we find that the optimal step edge detector, according to the Canny criteria, is the derivative of an ISEF filter, proposed by Shen and Castan (Graph. Models Image Proc. 54:112-133, 1992). In addition, if we also consider detecting blurred (or non-sharp) gaussian edges of different widths, we find that the optimal blurred-edge detector is the above optimal step edge detector convolved with a gaussian. This implies that edge detection must be performed at multiple scales to cover all the blur widths in the image. We derive a simple scale selection procedure for edge detection, and demonstrate it in one and two dimensions. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
Agency: GTR | Branch: EPSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 1.03M | Year: 2016
In a circular economy value is created by keeping products and materials in flow through effective recirculation and re-use to optimise their highest economic potential and minimise the use of virgin materials and external environmental costs. New construction and existing building stocks present the highest potential for circular economy innovation, value retention and creation opportunities, estimated to be worth approximately Euro 450 - 600M p.a. Innovation in the reclamation of currently hard to re-use building products - concrete, steel, brick, from end of service life (EOSL) buildings and their remanufacture into new modular products for new builds which would then be designed for future deconstruction, is therefore a major economic opportunity. REBUILD proposes that materials are directly reused and remanufactured into new builds with minimal re-processing. The project proposes a new circular economy system to address key barriers in the current linear approaches to demolition and new building construction, and build capabilities and tools to create significant new value by the early adoption of novel technologies, high value remanufacture, new system arrangements and the scaling up good practices. The magnitude of the opportunity is considerable. Existing buildings were not designed for adaptation, dis-assembly, or high value reuse. Therefore, the current option is to demolish them when they reach EOSL. In the UK approximately 50,000 buildings are demolished each year generating 45Mt of wastes, the majority of this is concrete and masonry, brick and steel. Of this 45Mt, only a small percentage is reclaimed, mostly for heritage products or easily demountable structures such as steel sections from portal frames. EOSL buildings are treated as costs to be minimised with speed of clearance commercially critical and a subsequent major loss of embedded carbon, energy, materials and potential value. For circularity to become mainstream in the building construction industry, it is imperative that barriers to reuse hard to deconstruct buildings, including using cement mortar based masonry, reinforced concrete, steel-concrete composite structures, which account for the vast majority of UK construction tonnage and cost, must be removed. REBUILD starts the process of converting all current building at the end of their first life and future buildings into material and product banks allowing the retention of high value materials and products for future repeat reuse. The cost of transport and storage means that repair, remanufacture and reuse of products to be commercially successful will need to be regional/local scale. To create demand acceptance for re-used products REBUILD testing processes are designed to demonstrate industry standards of quality assurance of technical performance. Creating demand requires a system re-design and co-ordination to integrate all the activities in the value chain including construction and manufacture, demolition and other key activities (financing, public procurement, planning), in new ways to collaborate to unlock and share value from product re-use. This integration is likely to be optimal at city scale within a circular economy regional hub. This system design will be created and modelled with our industrial stakeholders. The project will quantify, measure and evaluate the magnitude of value creation and product re-use for different system configurations and scenarios against a Business as Usual (BAU) reference case. Continual interactions with the industrial stakeholder group, and through their networks the wider construction industry, will make sure that the direction of our project stays close to industrial needs and the outcomes of our research are communicated to the industry in the most effective way.
Agency: GTR | Branch: EPSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 379.15K | Year: 2016
One sixth of the worlds CO2 emissions from energy and industrial process are released from the production of steel and cement, most of which is used in construction. Although reducing embodied energy in structures is increasingly being considered by structural engineers, it is very difficult to achieve meaningful results with todays construction methods because the different existing mainstream structural systems, whether steel, concrete or composite construction, use similar amounts of virgin materials and have similar embodied energy values. We propose a radically different approach to reduce the environmental impact of construction: by making structural components reusable at the end of life of the structure. This can potentially reduce the use of new materials of a structure by 50%. The concept of reusable structural components has been talked about, but no feasible solution is available. Without making structural components reusable, at the end of life of a building, although all the steel and concrete materials in the building structure remain serviceable, the building is demolished destructively, larger steel elements are recycled by energy-intensive melting, and the rest of the material is landfilled. This approach to construction is clearly wasteful - of energy, emissions and potentially cost. This project aims to develop a reusable composite floor system to be used in steel/concrete composite structures. It is important that this method of construction is developed as a mainstream structural engineering solution, rather than limited to very special conditions, so as to maximize the benefits of design and construction of reusable structural components at the end of life. Steel/concrete composite structures are chosen because this building type is the most commonly used in the UK. The proposed reusable floor system is a totally different form of construction, with new modes of structural behaviour that have not been investigated before. A complete rethink of composite floor structural and fire engineering design is necessary to ensure safety of the proposed floor system. Extensive new physical tests at ambient and elevated temperatures and in fire for the different components of the proposed floor system have been planned to identify the different modes of behaviour and failure of the system. Supplemented by extensive numerical simulations, this project will develop thorough understanding of the structural and fire performance of the new structural system to develop practical design methods. This project will be carried out in collaboration between the Universities of Bradford and Manchester, which have international leading experiences in composite structural behaviour and design at ambient temperature and in fire, and have dedicated and experienced research teams and experimental facilities. A steering group, consisting of high level representatives from key construction companies, will advise the research teams to ensure practical relevance of the research and to help promote the outcomes of the research. Various impact pathways have been planned, including a dedicated website for the project and APPs for designers, promotion of the research outcome to relevant Eurocode 4 (Eurocode for composite structures) committees (where the two applicants, Professors Lam and Wang, represent the UK for structural safety (Eurocode 4 Part 1.1, or EN 1994-1-1) and fire safety (Eurocode 4 Part 1.2, or EN 1994-1-2)), and a one-day colloquium at the end of the project.
Agency: GTR | Branch: MRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 544.99K | Year: 2016
The skin is an organ that covers the body and protects us from a variety of environmental insults, such as mechanical injury, invasion of microorganisms, ultra-violet irradiation and also prevents water loss. To fulfil such important function, skin has to constantly regenerate itself throughout of a persons life, and this ability of the skin for self-regeneration relies on proper functioning of epithelial stem cells present in the epidermis and hair follicles, the major epithelial structures of the skin. These stem cells are long-living cells, while producing short-living specialised progenies that form all protective epidermal cell layers and hairs. As the skin ages, functional activities of the stem cells decline leading to a thinning of the epidermis and hair loss, as well as reducing their ability to regenerate the skin after injury. Data obtained during the last decade have revealed that there are multiple cellular biochemical pathways controlling skin stem cells activity, with recent data demonstrating that activity of these biochemical pathways can be governed by epigenetic regulatory mechanisms. One of such epigenetic mechanisms is the modification of histones, proteins closely interacting with DNA, by the Polycomb group proteins to repress the expression of genes and thus change many important cellular functions. This project will look at how a Polycomb group gene Cbx4, which represses many genes, impacts on normal physiological and injury-induced regeneration. We will also explore how Cbx4 regulates different molecular signals in the epithelial stem cells and their progenies (those which form the epidermis and hair), and their involvement in wound healing. In addition, we will examine how Cbx4 controls long-term survival of the skin stem cells and their ability to produce skin-specific progeny. Studying the skin as a model system in this way, will cast light on the mechanisms that control the development and regeneration of other epithelial tissues, such as the epithelia of the intestine, teeth, kidney and lung. The knowledge gained from this study will therefore provide new opportunities to aid in the development of novel epigenetic therapies intended to prevent aberrant tissue growth and regenerative limitations, such as impaired wound healing in diabetic patients and in elderly individuals.