Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering


29 Nov 2017

Prof Wen-Hua Chen Named 2018 IEEE Fellow

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The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Grade of Fellow is conferred by the IEEE Board of Directors upon a person with an outstanding record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest.  IEEE Fellow is the highest grade of membership and is recognised by the technical community as a prestigious honour and an important career achievement.

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Professor Chen, pictured left, stated:

“Good research may take many years to be recognised. In addressing the performance degradation caused by friction in robotic manipulators, I pioneered a nonlinear disturbance observer design technique in 1998 when working at the University of Glasgow as a Research Associate. This technique was then generalised and further developed for a wide range of nonlinear systems through my EPSRC first grant and other works. However, it was quite difficult to get papers published and the techniques accepted in the academic and industrial community at the beginning. I am very pleased that after 18 years my original contribution was recognised.”



Nonlinear Disturbance Observer Based Control (DOBC) is now widely accepted by the control community in many industrial sectors, including aerospace, electric motor driving systems, power electronics, and robotics. For example, it has been applied to improve flight stability of helicopters and path following performance of aircraft in the presence of gust by Prof Chen’s team. Prof Wen-Hua Chen’s work in this area has attracted more than 3,500 citations according to Google Scholars.

In addition to his substantial contributions to the development and application of advanced control theory, Prof Chen also made significant contributions to signal processing, unmanned aerial vehicles, and autonomous systems. He is now working on developing autonomous system technologies for addressing global challenges, particularly in agriculture and environment protection     

The IEEE is the world’s leading professional association for advancing technology for humanity. Through its 400,000  plus members in 160 countries, the association is a leading authority on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. 

Dedicated to the advancement of technology, the IEEE publishes 30 percent of the world’s literature in the electrical and electronics engineering and computer science fields, and has developed more than 1300 active industry standards.  The Association also sponsors or co-sponsors nearly 1700 international technical conferences each year.  If you would like to learn more about IEEE or the IEEE Fellow Program, please visit  

The School of Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering offers their congratulations to Professor Chen in recognition of this prestigious honour.

(Top photograph: Prof Cen's Research Team testing disturbance observer based control techniques on unmanned aerial vehicles for a Defence Science and Technology Laboratory sponsored project)