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94.6% of our undergraduate students go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating

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Breakthrough in harvesting energy from automotive shock absorbers

Dr Ruichen Wang

Huddersfield Researcher Dr Ruichen Wang

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 11:01:00 BST

“…a full-size, ready-to-test prototype has already been constructed…”

BOOSTING the fuel efficiency of motor vehicles by “harvesting” the energy generated by their shock absorbers and feeding it back into batteries or electrical systems such as air conditioning has become a major goal in automotive engineering.  Now, a University of Huddersfield researcher has made a breakthrough by designing a new system and constructing a prototype that is ready for real-world testing.

harvesting energy from automotive shock absorbers prototype Ruichen Wang carried out the project to obtain his doctorate at the University and has published his findings.  The article, in the journal Energies, is titled Modelling, Testing and Analysis of a Regenerative Hydraulic Shock System.  It provides a summary of current progress in the field of vehicle energy harvesting and a detailed account of the theory and the practical development of his device, designed for installation in a heavy good vehicle.

Dr Wang, who is from Qingdao in eastern China, moved to PhD research after completing his mechanical engineering degree at the University of Huddersfield.  His doctoral supervisors, Professor Andrew Ball and Dr Fengshou Gu, suggested that he should work on an energy recovery device, addressing the issue that most of the energy contained in a vehicle’s fuel is wasted.   

Considerable work has already been done harvesting energy from brake systems, so Dr Wang decided to focus on the suspension.

After working on the mathematics, computational analysis and design of his device, Dr Wang personally constructed his full-size, ready-to-test prototype (pictured right) – a demonstration of practical engineering skills that impressed his supervisor Professor Ball.

“It has resulted in is a truly realisable application for energy recovery from a typical road vehicle.  Ruichen developed a theoretical predictive model and carried out the empirical testing, and the two of them correlate beautifully,” he added.

Harvested energy can be used for any auxiliary purpose in a vehicle, said Professor Ball, and in hybrids it could recharge the electric motor.

shock absorber The next stage is to work with an industrial partner to install and test Dr Wang’s system in a road-going vehicle.  But the technology has a wide application and there is every possibility that it could be adapted for rail vehicles – especially as Dr Wang has taken up a full-time research post at the University of Huddersfield’s Institute of Railway Research (IRR).

Dr Paul Allen, who leads the IRR’s Centre for Innovation in Rail, explains: “We are now exploring how Dr Wang’s energy harvesting and modelling techniques can be applied to developing low-cost self-health monitoring dampers for railway vehicles, a project which already has two industrial partners.”

  • Modelling, Testing and Analysis of a Regenerative Hydraulic Shock Absorber System Wang by Ruichen Wang, Fengshou Gu, Robert Cattley, and Andrew Ball is in Energies 2016, 9, 386.


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Uni’s 3M prof heads to final of Women in Business Awards

Uni’s 3M prof heads to final of Women in Business Awards

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 16:00:00 BST

Professor Liz Towns-Andrews, the 3M Professor of Innovation, won the regional heat in the STEM Business of the Year category 

Uni’s 3M prof heads to final of Women in Business Awards

 PROFESSOR Liz Towns-Andrews has been announced as a finalist in the 2016 Women in Business Awards for her role as CEO of the 3M Buckley Innovation Centre.

The awards, organised by business networking group Forward Ladies, are open to business women throughout the country and cover categories from start up to not for profit to inspiring leaders. 

Professor Towns-Andrews is the winner of the Yorkshire, North East and Scotland Regional Heat in the category of STEM Business of the Year, awarded on 14 October in Newcastle. 

Uni’s 3M prof heads to final of Women in Business Awards She will now be invited to take part in a live judging day on 16 November where the finalists from 11 categories will deliver a presentation in front of the judges.  The grand-final takes place on the 2 December, when the overall winner will be announced. 

‌Liz-Towns Andrews has had an illustrious and varied career.  After training as a chemist and gaining a PhD in X-ray crystallography, she worked at major UK research facilities before moving into the field of innovation and enterprise and relocating to the University of Huddersfield as Director of Research and Enterprise in 2009. 

She was the inspiration behind the University’s £12 million 3M Buckley Innovation Centre.  This offers office, research and conference facilities to businesses that range from large corporations to ambitious start-up companies.   

Professor Towns-Andrews was recently awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion and is the current 3M Professor of Innovation – the only 3M-branded professorial chair outside of Harvard University. 

Professor Towns-Andrews is honoured to have been recognised for her achievements but still believes more women need to be encouraged into the STEM sector.  “Not many women are at the helm of science and engineering companies, and I’d like to see that change,” she said.

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Online wound care Masters modules win major international award

Huddersfield's Amit Gefen, Leanne Atkin and Karen Ousey with the Societies's Chairperson

Pictured are Huddersfield award winners Leanne Atkin (centre left) and Professor Karen Ousey (centre right) with presenters Dr Stuart Flanagan and Ellie Lindsay OBE (far right).

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 14:51:00 BST

Professor Karen Ousey and Lecturer-Practitioner Leanne Atkin receive the award for Contribution to Education in Wound Care in Florence

AN innovative University of Huddersfield course that enables healthcare professionals in the UK and around the world to acquire added expertise and qualifications via internet study has received an international award.  It was bestowed at the 5th Congress of World Union of Wound Healing Societies, held in Florence, Italy, where it attracted hundreds of delegates.

Present at the conference to receive the award for Contribution to Education in Wound Care were Professor Karen Ousey and Lecturer-Practitioner Leanne Atkin of the University’s School of Human and Health Sciences.  Experts in wound treatment and care, they devised two Masters-level online modules – Tissue viability and wound management and Management of leg ulceration.

“About five years ago we changed to an online provision of education for nursing, podiatry and allied health professionals, because we saw that clinicians were experiencing more and more difficulty getting out of the workplace at specific times to attend the classroom,” said Ms Atkin.

The two modules were the first online courses at the University of Huddersfield and were a challenge to begin with, she admitted.

WUWHS “It was a completely different way of teaching and you lose that classroom interaction.  But the modules have gone from strength to strength and numbers have increased every year because we are able to cast our net far and wide.”

In addition to UK participants, there has also been increasing take-up overseas – from countries such as Greece and Cyprus.

The two online modules are both worth 30 Master’s credits and could be the basis for a full degree after further study.  In addition to online course work – including interactive tasks – there are fortnightly live webinars that create a virtual classroom.  But even with these there is flexibility, for they are recorded for the benefit of students unable to take part.

At the culmination of the course, candidates submit an online portfolio, validated by a local mentor, demonstrating their enhanced clinical skills.

‌Ms Atkin and Professor Ousey submitted details of the course to the awards committee of the World Union of Wound Healing Societies and a panel of judges decided it was the winning entry in the education category.

Institute of Skin Integrity Infection Prevention When the latest edition of the conference took place in Florence, there were further honours for Huddersfield.  Leanne Atkin was Highly Commended in the Cost Effective Care category, in recognition for a clear and simple leg ulceration pathway she has developed in tandem with Joy Tickle.  The duo also exhibited a poster that described their project.

Also, Amit Gefen – Professor of Biological Engineering at the University of Tel Aviv and now a Visiting Professor at the University of Huddersfield – won the award for advances in pressure area care.

One of the events at the five-day conference was a symposium on new research and solutions to post-operative wound care challenges that was co-chaired by Professor Ousey, who heads the University of Huddersfield’s Institute of Skin Integrity and Infection Prevention

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Chinese Consul attends Chinese Student and Scholar’s day

Line up of Mr Wang Ying, Mrs Li Hongwen, Dave Taylor, Andrew Mandebura, Alan Tobi at the Chinese Fresher's celebration

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 13:57:00 BST

Pictured (l-r) Dr Zhen Tong, President of the Chinese Student and Scholar's Association Huddersfield with Dave Taylor Pro Vice-Chancellor and the Consul General Mr Wang Ying The Consul and Head of the Education Section Mr Wang Ying was welcomed to the Chinese Fresher’s celebration

Pictured cutting the cake are (l-r) Dr Zhen Tong, Huddersfield's President of the Chinese Student and Scholar’s Association with Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, Dave Taylor and the Consul and Head of Education Section, Mr Wang Ying.

THE University of Huddersfield was transformed into an Eastern Delight when Chinese Fresher’s celebrated their national day with an evening packed full of entertainment.  Three Chinese VIPs from the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Manchester were also in attendance.

Chinese students The guests included Mr Wang Ying, the Consul and Head of the Education Section, along with his wife, Mrs Li Hongwen and the Vice-Consul of the Education section Mr Pan Jun.  They came along after kindly accepting an invitation from the President of the Chinese Student and Scholar’s Association Huddersfield (CSSA-HUD) and member of staff, Dr Zhen Tong.

“We were honoured to receive Mr Wang Ying and guests to the celebrations,” said Dr Tong, who works in the University’s Centre for Precision Technologies.  “They stayed for the entire evening, which was brilliant.”

Chinese students Over three hundred people enjoyed performances with violins, flutes and piano, as well as watching students sing and dance.

Towards the end of the evening speeches were given and Mr Wang Ying told all the Huddersfield students how proud he was of them and offered the new students his best wishes and told them to enjoy their time at Huddersfield.

To conclude the evening the Chinese Society welcomed members from many of the other University International Student Societies who joined them on stage for a fashion show.

The University currently has over 1,000 Chinese students and since the opening of its three China offices in the last four years, is fast becoming the first overseas choice for a growing numbers of Chinese students.

The Head Office is situated in Beijing with two regional offices in Shanghai and Guangzhou.  They work closely with over fifty quality institutional partners in China to help make sure the recruitment process for prospective students runs smoothly.

Welcoming the VIP guests were the University’s Pro-Vice Chancellor, International, Professor Dave Taylor, and the Director of International Development, Andrew Mandebura.

One of the CSSA-HUD students created a special birthday cake to celebrate the University’s 175th anniversary and it was cut by Dr Wang Ying and Dr Zhen Tong.

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