• Moving towards a carbon-neutral energy balance we are looking for alternative ways to harvest energy. Vibration Energy Harvesting (VEH) is an emerging area of research where periodic motion is converted into electrical power. Think about where vibration energy is wasted: One example is shock absorbers on car suspension, where motion is converted into heat. Why not re-design the shock absorbers to produce electricity? Think about a train; when it travels over a section of track, the track bends down for a while. Why not convert this bending into electricity?

    VEH
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  • One of the most important applications of computing in engineering is the computation of fluid flow around a body, such as a car, a plane or a wind turbine. Understanding how to promote smooth (laminar) flow and how to avoid chaotic (turbulent) flow is the key to developing energy-efficient solutions. This is Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD).

    fluid_flow
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  • During this academic year, my Robotics module Comp2403 was taught through the Webots simulator. We used mainly the ePuck robot, a nice critter with a number of sensors including a color camera. Now we have in our posession one real, actual, physical, very expensive ePuck. This project will review various problems we solved using the Webot ePuck (line following, factory floor, maze-solving, object avoidance and basic navigation) and transfer these to the real ePuck. A cross-compiler is available, but we have no experience of using this.

    ePuck robot
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  • Here you will design a controller for this Big Robot so it can navigate around Charles Hastings ground floor. You will need to research and select suitable sensors (laser, LIDAR, ultrasonic, collision, Kinect, color vision) and choose a system architecture, which may involve several microcontrollers (e.g., Arduinos) and even a laptop. You will design your software architecture with the hardware levels in mind.

    Big Bad Robot
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  • When you play a game, how do you decide where to go next? Which door to go through, or which staircase to go up. Which path to take out in the open? Here you will study theories of perception and cognition and apply these to designing a game level, or modding one with additional assets which should influence the players' decisions.

    Primary research would involve getting a load of folk to play your level(s). You would make a video log of their behaviour and subject this to analysis.

    Game Level
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  • Here you will design, build and test a two-wheeled educational robot from raw components, to produce a cheap but sophisticated robot to solve problems such as maze following. You will select an appropriate micro-controller (e.g., an Arduino flavour), the drive system (stepper, servo or dc-motors with encoders) and a range of sensors. You will design the chassis and other mechanical components in CAD which will be laser-cut or 3D-printed for you. Then you will code a solution using a suitable IDE (matched to your microcontroller choice).

    Boebot
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  • In this project you will code a simulation of a wind turbine which adapts to the current wind speed in order to achieve optimal performance. This is achieved by varying the generator load on the turbine, and adjusting the pitch of the blades for higher speeds. You will model the CART-3 research turbine from the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory, details and tons of data are available for this turbine. You will verify your model against published research.

    Wind Turbine
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  • This project is specifically for students who have already developed a Game Engine through their work on the 2nd year Games module and are continuing that work on the 3rd year Games module.  Your Game Engine Architecture will need to be developed to the extent that a Behaviour Manager element already exists.

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  • You've probably seen movie-clips of Spot the quadruped robot that can open doors. You may even have been on the Boston Dynamics Website https://www.bostondynamics.com/ with tons of interesting robots.

    The controller for walking or swimming robots is often based on 'Central Pattern Generators' (CPGs), inspired by Biology, consisting of a small number of interconnected neurons. For a quadruped (think horse or dog) these CPGs can successfully reproduce various gaits such as trot, canter, gallop, pronk and bound.

    ...
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  • How we move = how we feel. Therefore, if we change the way we move, then we can change how we feel.

    This is the core idea that Dance Movement Psychotherapy is built upon.

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