Hatfield, United Kingdom

University of Hertfordshire

www.herts.ac.uk
Hatfield, United Kingdom

The University of Hertfordshire is a public research university in Hertfordshire, England, United Kingdom. The university is based largely in Hatfield, Hertfordshire. Its antecedent institution, Hatfield Technical College, was founded in 1952 and was identified as one of 25 Colleges of Technology in the United Kingdom in 1959. In 1992, Hatfield Polytechnic was granted university status by the British government and subsequently renamed University of Hertfordshire. From the time it was awarded university status, Hertfordshire's enrolment has steadily increased. As of 2013, it has 25,130 students and 2,358 staff, 812 of which are academic members of staff. It has more than 5,200 international students and a global network of more than 160,000 alumni. Hertfordshire is a member of Association of Commonwealth Universities and University Alliance. The university has an annual turnover of £234m.The university's academic activities are organised into 11 schools, within which there are around 50 academic departments and 24 research centres. The university has a unique history in training aerospace engineers. The university offers courses in architecture, astronomy, business, computing, education, engineering, humanities, natural science, pharmacy and social science. Wikipedia.

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Patent
University of Hertfordshire | Date: 2017-08-30

A power system comprising: an electrical power bus; one or more loads (20) electrically coupled to the electrical power bus; a fuel cell (10); a DC-DC converter (14) electrically coupled between the fuel cell (10) and the electrical power bus; a battery (34); a switch (38) electrically coupled between the battery (34) and the electrical power bus; and a power system manager (22) configured to control operation of the switch (38); wherein the switch (38) is switchable between a first state and a second state; the first state of the switch (38) is such that the battery (34) is directly connected to the electrical power bus such that the battery (34) provides electrical power directly to the electrical power bus; and the second state of the switch (38) is such that the battery (34) is disconnected from the electrical power bus.


Patent
University of Hertfordshire | Date: 2017-08-30

A method of controlling a power system comprising: an electrical power bus; one or more loads (20); a fuel cell (10); a rechargeable electrical power source (34); and a switch (38). The method comprises: acquiring a load demand of loads (I_(L)); acquiring an output level for the fuel cell (I_(F)); acquiring a state of charge for the power source (S_(B)); and using the acquired data, controlling the switch (38) to be switched into a first, a second, or a third state. The first state is such that the power source (34) is connected to the bus such that the power source (34) provides power to the bus. The second state is such that the power source (34) is connected to the bus such that the power source (34) is charged by the bus. The third state is such that the power source (34) is disconnected from the bus.


Patent
University of Hertfordshire | Date: 2017-08-30

A power module on an entity having an electrical power bus, the power module comprising: a rechargeable electrical power source (34, 44); and a switch (38, 48) coupled between the power source (34, 44) and the bus. The switch (38, 48) is switchable between a first state, a second state, and a third state. The first state of the switch (38, 48) is such that the power source (34, 44) is connected to the bus such that the power source (34, 44) provides electrical power to the bus. The second state of the switch (38, 48) is such that the power source (34, 44) is connected to the electrical power bus such that the power source (34, 44) receives and is charged by electrical power from the bus. The third state of the switch (38, 48) is such that the power source (34, 44) is disconnected from the bus.


Patent
University of Hertfordshire | Date: 2017-08-09

A compound of the general formula A or a or a pharmaceutically acceptable salt or solvate thereof, wherein: R1 is selected from the group consisting of: C1-C12-alkyl, C3-C12-cycloalkyl, C6- C10-aryl, and C5-C7-heteroaryl; each optionally substituted with halogen, hydroxyl, OCOR3, amino, C1-C6-alkylamino, C1-C6-dialkylamino, C1C6- (halo)alkyl, C1C6-(halo)- alkoxy and/or COOR3; R2 is selected from the group consisting of: C6-C10-aryl and C5-C7-heteroaryl; each optionally substituted with halogen, hydroxyl, OCOR3 amino, C1C6- alkylamino, CrC6-dialkyl- amino, C1-C6-(halo)alkyl, C1C6-(halo)alkoxy and/or COOR3; R3 is independently at each occurrence selected from the group consisting of hydrogen and C1-C2-alkyl; and n is an integer from 1 to 10 inclusive.


Kvavilashvili L.,University of Hertfordshire
Psychological Bulletin | Year: 2014

In the light of current controversy about the nature of intrusions in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the review by Brewin (2014) is timely and important. It will undoubtedly stimulate further research and guide researchers' quests for understanding the nature of flashbacks in PTSD. In this commentary, I briefly summarize and discuss key points made by Brewin and elaborate on some of the reasons behind the controversy. For example, the terms involuntary autobiographical memories, intrusive memories, and flashbacks are often used interchangeably. I propose a taxonomy revealing the key differences across these forms of memory. If flashbacks are characteristic of patients with PTSD only, it is essential that more research targeting this population is conducted with a variety of methods. Finally, some new avenues for research to study intrusive memories and flashbacks in PTSD, using a diary method and modified trauma film paradigm, are described. © 2014 American Psychological Association.


Grant
Agency: GTR | Branch: AHRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 462.17K | Year: 2017

Everyday Lives in War aims to build productive community engagement and research partnerships with the capacity to stretch and even surprise all involved. It connects university and community researchers to explore histories and legacies of the First World War through collaborative histories, creative performance, source exploration, practical experiment and digital sharing. The Centre has a physical base three geographical regions: eastern and central England; South West England; and the North West, and supports collaborative partnerships across the U.K. In developing objectives and a programme of activities for a second phase of work (2017-19), the Centre has reflected on experience since 2014. Phase 1 for ELIW can be summed up as a process of making communities of interest. This was particularly significant because our research themes of food, theatre, childhood, farming, supernatural beliefs, cartoons, military tribunals and conscientious objection, ran counter to the dominant trajectory of national UK commemoration. Phase 2 consolidates our topics under the heading of everyday life and builds on our commitment to listening to diverse voices. The Centre will continue innovative dialogues between university and community researchers. In 2017 the Centre will embark on connecting communities of interest. It will draw on the expertise and enthusiasm evident in the collaborative projects funded by the Centre, in HLF-funded and other grassroots community groups, and in the work of independent researchers. Our aim here is to foster sustainable and creative research networks, reach under-represented groups, inspire new FWW projects (and applications to HLF) and to explore best practice in realising this ambition. In 2018, we will highlight international contexts to deepen the research networks and understanding of the everyday life theme. The programme for 2019 will draw together the work of the previous 5 years in a final intensive phase of reflection on legacy: historical legacies of the FWW in the UK and the wider world; the significance of the centenary as a device for thinking forward through the past; and lessons for working as an engaged university. Everyday life offers a powerful tool in exploring stories hidden even to ourselves, and in reflecting on memory, scale and the relevance of present-day issues in constructing different national pasts. The impact of the FWW on those born since 1919 allows the Centre to address inter-generational relationships and re-think the meanings of legacy. Geographical communities are significant to the Centre, but so is the inclusion of communities of interest, belief, practice, circumstance or experience. Through co-produced research, the Centre is developing intellectual and cultural contexts to enrich historical understanding of the FWW. Phase 2 will expand these insights by considering the significance of hands-on history when communities of makers engage creatively with FWW histories of their crafts. The centenary of the FWW is an opportunity to probe in innovative ways the historical significance of a period which resonates strongly in contemporary Britain. In 2013, the precise form of centenary activities, the relationship between academic and public histories, and the influence of the state and other bodies in shaping memorialisation, were still uncertain. A conjunction of meticulous research, living tradition and multiple end users, is creating a situation that is itself a fascinating subject for analysis and an occasion for profound dialogue about the nature of scholarship and heritage in 21st-century Britain.


Grant
Agency: GTR | Branch: EPSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 1.93M | Year: 2016

Lung diseases are a major global health burden. 300 million people live with asthma worldwide and it is predicted that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease will become the third-leading cause of death by 2020. The inhalation of therapeutic aerosols is a familiar medical strategy to treat lung diseases. Aerosol therapy can also achieve high antibiotic concentrations in the lung to treat infections. When aerosols are targeted into the deep lung, inhaled therapy also provides a means to achieve systemic concentrations of active pharmaceutical ingredients and avoid the need for injections of drugs that are destroyed in the gastrointestinal tract, such as insulin. Despite its potential, many patients fail to gain the full benefits of inhaled therapies in treating lung disease, and systemic drug delivery has failed to achieve the market break-through it deserves. Some of the ineffectiveness arises from the inability of patients to use their therapy correctly. However, achieving aerosol deposition in the lungs is a major challenge even for those patients with good inhaler technique. The challenge is to produce a portable dosage form containing components that can be redispersed by a patient. Redispersion must be achieved with uniformity of a dose in the form of an aerosol with the properties required for lung penetration. Turning potentially inhalable particles into formulated products that can be manufactured reproducibly, and that achieve consistent aerosolization performance between different patients poses many challenges that are poorly-solved. Consensus meetings of industrial, academic and regulatory experts in the field of inhaled medicine have identified the need to improve control and consistency of drug deposition performance. Additionally there is a need to improve our understanding of how and why the characteristics of starting materials interact with the manufacturing conditions to lead to inter-batch and inter-patient variability in aerosol characteristics. At the heart of the challenge is the fact that the very property of the particles that makes them suitable for inhalation (their small size which, at less than 5 microns, is less than the diameter of a human hair) also causes them to clump together as agglomerates. Theme 1 of the project will employ synthonic engineering (a computer modelling technique based on the molecular structures of pharmaceutical ingredients) to achieve new abilities to predict agglomeration behaviour early in development, and the interactions of agglomerate materials with inactive ingredients in the formulation. Theme 2 will use new measurement techniques that image how agglomerates interact with each other in powders to develop an understanding and characterize how the agglomerate phase in a formulation leads to inter-patient or inter-batch variability of product performance. Theme 3 will underpin the knowledge gained from powder imaging to assess the underlying causes of agglomeration. Better, integrated experimental measurement techniques will be developed to characterize the material properties that regulate the extent and strength of interactions between particles. Theme 4 focuses on developing new computational models to characterize the behaviour of agglomerated powders during the mechanical processes occurring when a patient breathes through an inhaler, and when powders are processed during manufacturing. The final component of the project is to integrate the knowledge gained in Themes 1-4 to engineer quality into a range of test products selected by an advisory panel. This will be achieved by using the prediction and measurement techniques to inform formulation scientists, device designers and process engineers of the steps that are appropriate to mitigate the effects of agglomeration on product performance. The ultimate goal is to use the techniques developed to translate the therapeutic benefits for patients using inhaled medicines from molecules to manufactured products.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERC-ADG | Phase: ERC-ADG-2015 | Award Amount: 2.50M | Year: 2016

The project aims to establish an authoritative scientific framework for understanding the relationship between group ritual, social cohesion, and pro-group behaviour. Rituals have shaped human societies for millennia, but the exact social consequences of rituals are poorly understood. The proposed research will identify the fundamental components of rituals worldwide and chart their effects on patterns of group alignment and action. Doing so will have a lasting impact on basic understandings of the nature, causes, and consequences of ritual dynamics as well as open up exciting new avenues of inquiry that bridge the humanities and social sciences. It is proposed that within numerous cultures and group types, collective rituals come in two main forms with distinct consequences: 1) affectively-intense, rarely-enacted rituals bond group members tightly and motivate extreme self-sacrifice; 2) frequently repeated rituals create allegiance to broad collectives and motivate ingroup bias. Using this model as a starting point, the proposed research programme will seek to achieve three tightly linked objectives. Objective 1 will examine psychological mechanisms underlying rituals effects on group cohesion and behaviour in ten nations. Objective 2 will focus on the ritual dynamics of special populations exposed to group-related violence (e.g., war veterans, ex-convicts, war-torn communities). Objective 3 will examine the functions of ritual and cohesion in cultural group selection. Using new techniques, we will quantitatively code and analyse qualitative data on ritual and cohesion in large historical databases from hundreds of groups over the past 12,000 years. Overall, these research objectives aim to provide insights into key questions (e.g., what are the fundamental building blocks of group rituals?), understudied groups (e.g., revolutionary combatants), and unresolved debates in many fields (e.g., what motivates self-sacrifice?).


Grant
Agency: GTR | Branch: EPSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 578.05K | Year: 2017

The goal of this proposal is to seek funding to extend the functionalities of the robotics hardware in the University of Hertfordshires (UH) Robot House (RH), creating the Robot House 2.0 - and, importantly, to make it accessible to other research groups. The new robots to be purchased include the multipurpose and modular care-o-bot 4 which can be tailored to individual user needs and assistance scenarios. This will be complemented by less expensive, smaller platforms with more specialised functionalities: the mobile Pepper robot, Turtlebot 2 and Fetch, Sawyer robot, and the Pioneer LX and Kinova arm/manipulator. Those systems are complemented by already existing robotic hardware in the Robot House, including the telepresence Giraff robot. Having a variety of different robotic systems with differing and complementary functionalities will allow a wide range of innovative smart home and robotics research, opening up completely new scenarios and applications areas ranging from smart home and robotics technology to co-worker scenarios, that require either advanced mobility, telepresence, manipulation or communication abilities. Purchasing these new systems will allow other research groups and industry to use the RH2.0 smart home environment for development, testing and evaluation purposes. Our vision is for RH2.0 to become an easily accessible hub for UK universities and industry conducting research into smart home and robotics technology.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ICT-24-2015 | Award Amount: 4.00M | Year: 2016

The crowning achievement of human communication is our unique ability to share intentionality, create and execute on joint plans. Using this paradigm we model human-robot communication as a three step process: sharing attention, establishing common ground and forming shared goals. Prerequisites for successful communication are being able to decode the cognitive state of people around us (mindreading) and building trust. Our main goal is to create robots that analyze and track human behavior over time in the context of their surroundings (situational) using audio-visual monitoring in order to establish common ground and mind-reading capabilities. On BabyRobot we focus on the typically developing and autistic spectrum children user population. Children have unique communication skills, are quick and adaptive learners, eager to embrace new robotic technologies. This is especially relevant for special eduation where the development of social skills is delayed or never fully develops without intervention or therapy. Thus our second goal is to define, implement and evaluate child-robot interaction application scenarios for developing specific socio-affective, communication and collaboration skills in typically developing and autistic spectrum children. We will support not supplant the therapist or educator, working hand-in-hand to create a low risk environment for learning and cognitive development. Breakthroughs in core robotic technologies are needed to support this research mainly in the areas of motion planning and control in constrained spaces, gestural kinematics, sensorimotor learning and adaptation. Our third goal is to push beyond the state-of-the-art in core robotic technologies to support natural human-robot interaction and collaboration for edutainment and healthcare applications. Creating robots that can establish communication protocols and form collaboration plans on the fly will have impact beyond the application scenarios investigated here.

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