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£850k funding to enhance facilities at pioneering research centres

Loughborough has been awarded £850,000 from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to increase its state-of-the-art equipment at its Centres for Doctoral Training in Embedded Intelligence and Regenerative Medicine.

The funding will enable several key purchases, including an atomic force microscope – which has the capability to measure nano-scale properties of materials and obtain images of biological processes in situ – and Biopac fNIR (functional near infra-red spectroscopy), a non-contact device to determine cognitive activity by analysing the blood flow around the brain.

The CDT in Embedded Intelligenceis the first of its kind in Europe and aims to deliver high calibre employees and smarter products to industry. Loughborough’s academic partner in the Centre is Heriot Watt University.

Embedded Intelligence uses sensors and data processing to enable a product, process or service to reflect on its performance, and is seen in many devices in industry and even in home appliances, like smart energy monitoring systems.

The CDT in Regenerative Medicine brings together the complementary research skills at Loughborough and the two partner institutions involved in the Centre – Keele University and the University of Nottingham.

Regenerative Medicine is a globally important and fast-growing field of the healthcare industry, with the potential to revolutionise the sector and transform patients’ lives. It covers a wide range of therapies designed to enable damaged, diseased or defective skin, bone and other tissue, and even perhaps organs, to work normally again.

Director of the Embedded Intelligence CDT, Professor Paul Conway, said: “Embedded intelligence is all about improving products, services and processes to deliver a smarter world. It is a fast moving area and involves the orchestration of many disciplines to be successful.

“Training and learning with top-of-the range, state of the art equipment and facilities is a priority in our programme and this additional investment will significantly enhance our already excellent facilities.

Professor David Williams, Director of the Centre in Regenerative Medicine, added: “This funding will allow us to make important additions to the equipment that our students are able to access, helping to keep their research environment up to date.”

Further information about the Centres for Doctoral Training and the research studentships available through them is available on the University’s Graduate School website.

PhD students in the Centres put their research and training into real-life practice through a range of sponsored industrial projects, providing an excellent foundation for careers in the sector. Applications for studentships are now invited from well-qualified students who have First class honours or Upper Second class honours or equivalent. The deadline is 31 July 2014.