Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering


Dr Matt Best BEng, PhD, CEng

Photo of Dr Matt Best

Senior Lecturer in Vehicle Dynamics and Control

Departmental Director of Studies


Matt obtained his BEng in Mathematical Engineering from Loughborough University in 1991 and subsequently his PhD (On the modelling requirements for the practical implementation of advanced vehicle suspension control) also from Loughborough, in 1995. After a brief spell as a Senior Research Engineer at European Gas Turbines in Leicester he returned to Loughborough in 1996 as Lecturer in Dynamics and Control. In 2006 became Senior Lecturer in Vehicle Dynamics and Control.

Matt was Admissions Tutor from 2001 and became Programme Director for the undergraduate Automotive Engineering courses in 2009. He subsequently served as Director of Studies for Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering between 2013 – 2016.


  • BEng Mathematical Engineering, Loughborough University, 1991
  • PhD Vehicle Suspension Control, Loughborough University, 1991
  • CEng Institution of Mechanical Engineers


Research group

  • Control and Reliability

Research Interests and Activities

  • All aspects of modelling and control in vehicle ride and handling applications
  • Offline and real-time system identification, specialising in simple model structures
  • Real-time parameter and dynamic state estimation, with a particular interest in the application of extended Kalman filters
  • Control implementation, particularly using linear and nonlinear Optimal methods
  • Driver modelling for realistic response of unskilled drivers
  • Linear electric actuators for vehicle ride control
  • Vehicle driveline optimisation and control
  • Motion cueing for real-time vehicle simulation on moving platform simulator

Current and recent grants and contracts (with others)

  • Programme for simulation innovation, 2013,  EPSRC / JLR
  • Linear electromagnetic actuation system for active vehicle suspension, 2006, EPSRC
  • Real-time vehicle dynamics model for playstation, 2000, Clockwork Games
  • Practical implementation of semi-active vehicle control, 1995, Ford Motor Company


Current teaching responsilbilities

  • TTA014 Computing
  • TTC066 Vehicle Dynamics and Control
  • TTD017 Vehicle Handling
  • TTP404 Vehicle Dynamics

Recent publications

  • Bogdanski, K and Best, MC (accepted) A New Structure for Nonlinear Black-box System Identification using the Extended Kalman Filter, Proc ImechE Part D : Journal of Automobile Engineering.
  • Li, Z and Best, MC (2016) Structure optimisation of input layer for feed-forward NARX neural network, International Journal of Modelling, Identification and Control, ISSN: 1746-6180.
  • Best, MC and Bogdanski, K (2016) Extending the Kalman Filter for Structured Identification of Linear and Nonlinear Systems, International Journal of Modelling, Identification and Control, pp.1-1, ISSN: 1746-6180.
  • Li, Z and Best, MC (2015) Optimization of the Input Layer Structure for Feed-forward NARX Neural Network, International Journal of Electrical, Computer, Energetic, Electronic and Communication Engineering, 9(7), pp.669-674.
  • Best, MC, Shah, J, Benmimoun, A, Lakehal-Ayat, M (2015) Active Rear-End Collision Avoidance using Electric Power Steering System, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part D (Journal of Automobile Engineering), 1(1), pp.1-18, DOI: 10.1177/0954407014567517.
  • Best, MC (2014) A new empirical 'exponential' tyre model, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF VEHICLE DESIGN, 65(2-3), pp.241-255, ISSN: 0143-3369.
  • Best, MC, Baden-Fuller, J, Garrett, NJL, Passmore, MA (2013) The importance of unsteady aerodynamics to road vehicle dynamics, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics, 117(1), pp.1-10, DOI: 10.1016/j.jweia.2013.03.006.
  • Garrett, NJI and Best, MC (2013) Model predictive driving simulator motion cueing algorithm with actuator-based constraints, Vehicle System Dynamics: international journal of vehicle mechanics and mobility, iFirst, pp.1-22, ISSN: 0042-3114. DOI: 10.1080/00423114.2013.783219.


Selected publications

Much of my research is focussed on the use of Kalman filters for real-time state and parameter estimation in vehicle dynamics. The combination of state estimation with adaptation of tyre cornering stiffnesses is given in:

  • Best M.C., Gordon T.J. and Dixon P.J. (2000) ‘An Extended Adaptive Kalman Filter for Real-time State Estimation of Vehicle Handling Dynamics,’ Vehicle System Dynamics : International Journal of Vehicle Mechanics and Mobility, Vol 34, No 1, pp 57-75

The method has extended to more complete system identification (which can also be used in combination with state estimation) in:

  • Best, M. C., Newton, A. P., and Tuplin, S. (2007) ‘The identifying extended Kalman filter: parametric system identification of a vehicle handling model’. Proc. Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part K: Journal of Multi-body Dynamics

And more recently to fully black-box identification of any MIMO system, in:

  • Bogdanski, K., Best, M.C. (2017) ‘A New Structure for Nonlinear Black-box System Identification using the Extended Kalman Filter’. Proc ImechE, Part D : Journal of Automobile Engineering

I have also examined the control of smoothly nonlinear systems, using time-domain optimisations to find nonlinear optimal solutions. Eg to find optimal collision avoidance using combined braking and steering :

  • Best, M. C. (2012) ‘Optimisation of High-Speed Crash Avoidance in Autonomous Vehicles’. International Journal of Vehicle Autonomous Systems, Vol. 10, No. 4, pp 337-354

My current focus is on the realistic modelling of normal driver behaviour, particularly for finding the driving response of regular (inexpert) drivers. I use a simple yet effective model structure which has been designed using data from vehicle testing on the road and on our motion base driving simulator :

  • Best, M.C. (2012) ‘A Simple Realistic Driver Model’ proceedings from the 11th International Symposium on Advanced Vehicle Control (AVEC), Seoul, Korea, September 2012

 View central admin publications database

External collaborators

  • Jaguar Land Rover
  • University of Sheffield

External roles and appointments:

  • General Chair of Advanced Vehicle Control (AVEC) conference, Loughborough, UK, August 2010
  • Co-editor, International Journal of Vehicle Mechanics and Mobilty : Special issue on Advanced Vehicle Control, 2011.
  • International Scientific committee, AVEC since 2006
  • Invited papers in International Journals : Vehicle Autonomous Systems (2011, 2007), IMechE Journal of Multibody Dynamics, (2007), Vehicle System Dynamics (2017)
  • Invited lectures : ACT (Advanced Control Technology club – special interest group in Automotive Control), March 2002
  • Referee for Vehicle System Dynamics, ImechE Journals of Automobile Engineering and Multibody Dynamics, International Journal of Vehicle Design, ASME Journal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement and Control, International Journal of Vehicle Autonomous Systems
  • Collaborative Research : Development of Linear Electric Actuators for vehicle ride control (EPSRC, Sheffield University and Jaguar / LandRover), Programme for Simulation Innovation (EPSRC / LandRover)

External examiner 

  • PhD examinations, Leicester (2004), Coventry (2005), Stockholm (2007), Cambridge (2008, 2012), Leeds (2008), Cranfield (2008, 2010), Glasgow (2010), Bath (2014)
  • MSc in Weapon & Vehicle Systems and MSc in Military Vehicles Technology, Cranfield University, 2010 – 2014
  • Vehicle Engineering MEng, University of Pretoria, 2006
  • Programme Validations, Lincoln (2014), Cranfield (2015)