“The Faculty are delighted with the strong Ulster University REF2021 performance in Unit of Assessment 12 – Engineering at Ulster which has seen 90% of our research outputs rated as world-leading or internationally excellent while having more than doubled the number of eligible staff submitted since the last exercise.
This coupled with our inclusion in a group of institutions who are ranked joint first in the UK for having attained a 100% 4*/3* rating in the quality of the impact from their research, is a testament to the staff in the School of Engineering who have actively contributed to this success.”
Unit of Assessment Coordinator
Name Role Acheson, J Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Archer, E Dr Senior Lecturer Bhalla, N Dr Lecturer in Electronic Engineering Biglarbeigi, P Dr Lecturer in Engineering Boyd, A Dr Senior Lecturer Brown, A Dr Senior Lecturer Burke, G Dr Senior Lecturer Byrne, J Professor Professor Of Photocatalysis Chakrabarti, S Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Chang, MW Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Cheema, AA Dr Lecturer in Electronic Engineering Davis, J Professor Professor Dixon, D Dr Senior Lecturer Dunlop, P Dr Senior Lecturer Escalona, O Professor Professor & Director of the Advanced Cardiovascular Research Centre Farokh Payam, A Dr Lecturer in Electronics and Software Fernandez-Ibanez, P Dr Lecturer in Engineering Science Finlay, D Professor Research Director- Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials Fishlock, S Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Golbang, A Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Harkin-Jones, E Professor Bombardier-Royal Academy Of Eng, Chair Lemoine, P Dr Lecturer Maguire, P Professor Professor of Plasmas and Nanofabrication Mancuso, E Dr Lecturer Mariotti, D Professor Professor of Plasma Science & Nanoscale Engineering McConville, A Dr Lecturer McFadden, S Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering McGarrigle, C Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering McIlhagger, A Professor Professor of Advanced Materials McLaughlin, J Professor Head of School of Engineering Meenan, B Professor Professor of Biomedical Materials Ng, M Dr Senior Lecturer Nolan, M Professor Professor of Nanomaterials Modelling Opiyo, N Dr Lecturer in Electrical Engineering Papakonstantinou, P Professor Professor of Advanced Materials Petrović, Z Professor Professor of Plasma Physics Quinn, J Dr Senior Lecturer and Director of the Centre for Engineering and Renewable Energy Rahimian, A Dr Lecturer in Electronic Engineering Ralph, C Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Sharatchandra Varma, B Dr Lecturer in Electronic Engineering and Embedded Systems Soin, N Dr Lecturer in Healthcare Electronics Sun, L Dr Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering
“Engineering research at Ulster has continued to grow both in terms of scale and quality. We have more than doubled the number of our staff submitted to REF since 2014 and our percentage of research deemed to be world-leading has more than tripled.
Conducting impactful research has always been key to our strategy and we are delighted to be recognised amongst the top tier of Universities delivering exclusively 3* and 4* research impact in engineering.
In addition, we have strived to create an environment that supports all out researchers in their ambition to realise the highest quality research and are delighted to also have the entirety of our research environment recognised as 3*/4*.”
Impact Case Study - Stryker Success
Automated Defibrillator Technology for the Successful Treatment of Sudden Cardiac Arrest
There are approximately 30,000 sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) events in the UK per year. This figure approaches 6 million when scaled globally. SCA often happens without warning, and it can happen to anyone, anywhere and at any time. SCA can strike regardless of age, race or gender. The majority of these events take place outside of the hospital environment. A SCA event is incompatible with life if there is no immediate and effective treatment with the overall chances of survival less than 10%. SCA is responsible for more deaths than breast cancer, lung cancer, and HIV/AIDS combined.
Summary of Research
Ulster University has a well-established record of accomplishment in the development of defibrillator technology. Our early work at Ulster and NIBEC on defibrillation technology was very much based on realising the vision of Professor Frank Pantridge (Royal Victoria Hospital Belfast) – pioneer of mobile coronary care. Pantridge’s vision in the 1950s was that a defibrillator should be beside every fire extinguisher.
Devices at that time were extremely large and this was mainly due to the lack of miniaturised electronic components – particularly those required to power a defibrillator and provide the electrical energy needed to produce the required shock.
Much of our early work was focused on the development of suitable technology to allow this miniaturisation to be realised. These developments, including the integration and in-house research of new flat panel displays, compact capacitors, flexible defibrillators pads, high density batteries and embedded software primarily led to a device that was suitable for transportation, in an ambulance, to a patient suspected of having a cardiac arrest.
Ultimately, however, this work provided the platform for which the modern wall mounted AED is based on. Our research has continued to optimise the technology supporting the development of world leading AED products. This has included the development of medical device grade algorithms for automated ECG analysis through to the development of new concepts in medical device user experience.
Summary of Impact
In 1997, new defibrillation technology developed at NIBEC was spun out to form HeartSine Ltd in Belfast. In 2015 HeartSine was acquired by Physio-Control which was subsequently acquired by Stryker. The financial investment and the growth in employment have had a significant impact on the Northern Ireland Economy. As a testament to the global brand identity that HeartSine had established prior to the acquisition, Stryker, a Fortune 500 company, has retained the HeartSine product identity in its current product range and supported the further development of its highly innovative technology.
As the number of lives saved with this technology continues to grow the personal impact of this research is profound. While the value of each life saved is unquantifiable, the impact upon the bystander who has administered the AED is also significant. The advancements in the AED technology mean that the citizen first responder is offered advice and guidance to administer high quality CPR. Hence, bystanders who witness a cardiac arrest are now empowered to act in a lay rescuer lifesaving capacity. While the majority of us are, fortunately, likely to remain unaware of the level at which the HeartSine-Stryker AED technology operates, efforts to ensure accessibility all around us should make us feel reassured that we are all potential beneficiaries, either as recipients or providers of this lifesaving intervention.
As a testament to the continuing value of the research undertaken by NIBEC in AED technology, the collaborative arrangements with HeartSine-Stryker have remained active. In addition to ongoing research programs on specific aspects of AED technology the collaboration is also evidenced by joint representation on key international scientific advisory panels. This joint input is providing scientific direction in ECG algorithm development to medical device regulators (e.g. FDA), the medical industry and clinical bodies.
- Walsh, S.J., McClelland, A.J., Owens, C.G., Allen, J., Anderson, J.M. and Adgey, A.J., 2004. Efficacy of distinct energy delivery protocols comparing two biphasic defibrillators for cardiac arrest. The American journal of cardiology, 94(3), pp.378-380.
- Kidwai, B.J., McIntyre, A., Anderson, J. and Adgey, A.J., 2002. Optimization of transthoracic ventricular defibrillation - biphasic and triphasic shocks, waveform rounding, and synchronized shock delivery. Journal of electrocardiology, 35(3), pp.235-244.
- Daly, M.J., Finlay, D.D., Scott, P.J., Nugent, C.D., Adgey, A.A.J. and Harbinson, M.T., 2013. Pre-hospital body surface potential mapping improves early diagnosis of acute coronary artery occlusion in patients with ventricular fibrillation and cardiac arrest. Resuscitation, 84(1), pp.37-41
- Howe, A., Escalona, O.J., Di Maio, R., Massot, B., Cromie, N.A., Darragh, K.M., Adgey, J. and McEneaney, D.J., 2014. A support vector machine for predicting defibrillation outcomes from waveform metrics. Resuscitation, 85(3), pp.343-349
- Mackle, C., Bond, R., Torney, H., McBride, R., McLaughlin, J., Finlay, D., Biglarbeigi, P., Brisk, R., Harvey, A. and Mceneaney, D., 2020. A Data-Driven Simulator for the Strategic Positioning of Aerial Ambulance Drones Reaching Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrests: A Genetic Algorithmic Approach. IEEE Journal of Translational Engineering in Health and Medicine, 8, pp.1-10.
- Cromie, N.A., Allen, J.D., Navarro, C., Turner, C., Anderson, J.M. and Adgey, A.A.J., 2010. Assessment of the impedance cardiogram recorded by an automated external defibrillator during clinical cardiac arrest. Critical care medicine, 38(2), pp.510-517.
View the outputs
- 3D printed Sr-containing composite scaffolds: Effect of structural design and material formulation towards new strategies for bone tissue engineering
- 3D Printing of Drug-Loaded Thermoplastic Polyurethane Meshes: A Potential Material for Soft Tissue Reinforcement in Vaginal Surgery
- A Computer-Human Interaction Model to Improve the Diagnostic Accuracy and Clinical Decision-Making during 12-lead Electrocardiogram Interpretation
- A Distributed Event-Triggered Control Strategy for DC Microgrids Based on Publish-Subscribe Model Over Industrial Wireless Sensor Networks
- A method for quantitative characterization of agglomeration degree in nanocomposites
- A Nucleation Progenitor Function approach to polycrystalline equiaxed solidification modelling with application to a microgravity transparent alloy experiment observed in-situ
- A Realistic Simulation Testbed of A Turbocharged Spark-Ignited Engine System: A Platform for the Evaluation of Fault Diagnosis Algorithms and Strategies
- A unified framework for the multi-scale computational homogenisation of 3D-textile composites
- A wireless smart patch for the controlled repetitive transdermal administration of therapeutic agents
- Activated Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes and 2D Nanostructured MoS2 Hybrid Electrode Material for High‐Performance Supercapacitor Applications
- All-passive pixel super-resolution of time-stretch imaging
- An Investigation into the Stability of Graphitic C3N4 as a Photocatalyst for CO2 Reduction
- Calcium phosphate thin films enhance the response of human mesenchymal stem cells to nanostructured titanium surfaces
- Characterization and structure–property relationship of melt-mixed high density polyethylene/multi-walled carbon nanotube composites under extensional deformation
- Charge carrier localised in zero-dimensional (CH3NH3)3Bi2I9 clusters
- Continuous In-Flight Synthesis for On-Demand Delivery of Ligand-Free Colloidal Gold Nanoparticles
- Controlling the Energy-Level Alignment of Silicon Carbide Nanocrystals by Combining Surface Chemistry with Quantum Confinement
- CuCo2O4 nanoparticles on nitrogenated graphene as highly efficient oxygen evolution catalyst
- Data acquisition and imaging using wavelet transform: a new path for high speed transient force microscopy
- Design of a smart sensor mesh for the measurement of pH in ostomy applications
- Destruction of chemical warfare surrogates using a portable atmospheric pressure plasma jet
- Detecting the Elusive P-Wave: A New ECG Lead to Improve the Recording of Atrial Activity
- Direct Visualization of Independent Ta Centers Supported on Two-Dimensional TiO2 Nanosheets
- Dissociation of tetramethylsilane for the growth of SiC nanocrystals by atmospheric pressure microplasma
- Drinking water treatment by multistage filtration on a household scale: Efficiency and challenges
- Effect of photocatalysis on the transfer of antibiotic resistance genes in urban wastewater
- Effective Utilization of Waste Red Mud for High Performance Supercapacitor Electrodes
- Electrocatalytic Hydrogen Evolution Reaction on Edges of a Few Layer Molybdenum Disulfide Nanodots
- Electrochemically Controlled Dissolution of Nanocarbon–Cellulose Acetate Phthalate Microneedle Arrays
- Emulsion Electrospinning of Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) Nanofibrous Membranes for High-Performance Triboelectric Nanogenerators
- Energy band diagram of device-grade silicon nanocrystals
- Evaluating the Mechanism of Visible Light Activity for N,F-TiO2 Using Photoelectrochemistry
- Expanding the portfolio of tribo-positive materials: aniline formaldehyde condensates for high charge density triboelectric nanogenerators
- Exploiting the signatures of nanoplasmon-exciton coupling on proton sensitive insulator-semiconductor devices for drug discovery applications
- Eye Tracking the Visual Attention of Nurses Interpreting Simulated Vital Signs Scenarios: Mining Metrics to Discriminate Between Performance Level
- Fabrication and characterisation of nanocrystalline graphite MEMS resonators using a geometric design to control buckling
- Force reconstruction from tapping mode force microscopy experiments
- Hierarchical titania nanostructures prepared with focused ion beam-assisted anodisation of titanium in an aqueous electrolyte
- High performance triboelectric nanogenerators based on phase-inversion piezoelectric membranes of poly(vinylidene fluoride)-zinc stannate (PVDF-ZnSnO3) and polyamide-6 (PA6)
- Human Fetal Osteoblast Response on Poly(Methyl Methacrylate)/Polystyrene Demixed Thin Film Blends: Surface Chemistry Vs Topography Effects
- Hybrid Synthetic Receptors on MOSFET Devices for Detection of Prostate Specific Antigen in Human Plasma
- Improved crush energy absorption in 3D woven composites by pick density modification
- In Situ Investigation of Methane Dry Reforming on Metal/Ceria(111) Surfaces : Metal–Support Interactions and C−H Bond Activation at Low Temperature
- Intracellular mechanisms of solar water disinfection
- Mapping Elastic Properties of Heterogeneous Materials in Liquid with Angstrom-Scale Resolution
- Mass and controlled fabrication of aligned PVP fibers for matrix type antibiotic drug delivery systems
- Mechanism of photocatalytic disinfection using titania-graphenecomposites under UV and visible irradiation
- Melt processing and properties of Polyamide 6/Graphene nanoplatelet composites.
- Micromachined nanocrystalline graphite membranes for gas separation
- Microplasma-synthesized ultra-small NiO nanocrystals, a ubiquitous hole transport material
- Microscopic Investigation of the Combined Use of Antibiotics and Biosurfactants on Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus
- Modelling PV-based communal grids potential for rural western Kenya
- Multi-compartment centrifugal electrospinning based composite fibers
- Multifunctional photo/thermal catalysts for the reduction of carbon dioxide
- Multifunctional Structural Supercapacitor Based on Urea-Activated Graphene Nanoflakes Directly Grown on Carbon Fiber Electrodes
- Multilayered assembly of poly(vinylidene fluoride) and poly(methyl methacrylate) for achieving multi-shape memory effects
- Nanophotonic-Carbohydrate Lab-on-a-Microneedle for Rapid Detection of Human Cystatin C in Finger-Prick Blood
- Nanostructuring carbon fibre probes for use in central venous catheters
- Non-steady 3D dendrite tip growth under diffusive and weakly convective conditions
- Numerical simulation of Bridgman solidification of binary alloys
- Optimization of soft armor: the response of single-ply para-aramid and ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene fabrics under ballistic impact
- Plasma-Assisted Large-Scale Nanoassembly of Metal–Insulator Bioplasmonic Mushrooms
- Porous yolk-shell particle engineering via nonsolvent-assisted trineedle coaxial electrospraying for burn-related wound healing
- Potential of Manuka Honey as a Natural Polyelectrolyte to Develop Biomimetic Nanostructured Meshes With Antimicrobial Properties
- Production and characterization of PEEK/IF-WS2 nanocomposites for Additive Manufacturing: simultaneous improvement in processing characteristics and material properties
- Protein adsorption on nano-patterned hydrogenated amorphous carbon model surfaces
- Realizing the potential of polyethylene oxide as new positive tribo-material: Over 40 W/m2 high power flat surface triboelectric nanogenerators
- Real-time monitoring of DNA immobilization and detection of DNA polymerase activity by a microfluidic nanoplasmonic platform
- Recycled Red Mud–Decorated Porous 3D Graphene for High‐Energy Flexible Micro‐Supercapacitor
- Replacing the Metal Electrodes in Triboelectric Nanogenerators: High-Performance Laser-Induced Graphene Electrodes
- Role of surface reconstruction on Cu/TiO2 nanotubes for CO2 conversion
- Self-assembled monolayers of alendronate on Ti6Al4V alloy surfaces enhance osteogenesis in mesenchymal stem cells
- Sensitive Chronocoulometric Detection of miRNA at Screen printed Electrodes modified by gold decorated MoS2 Nanosheets
- Sensor systems for bacterial reactors: A new flavin-phenol composite film for the in situ voltammetric measurement of pH
- Significant triboelectric enhancement using interfacial piezoelectric ZnO nanosheet layer
- Simultaneous viscosity and density measurement of small volumes of liquids using a vibrating microcantilever
- Singularities in structured meshes and cross-fields
- Size-dependent stability of ultra-small α-/β-phase tin nanocrystals synthesized by microplasma
- Solar photocatalytic disinfection of water using titanium dioxide graphene composites
- Standard ECG Lead I Prospective Estimation Study from Far-field Bipolar Leads on the Left Upper Arm: A Neural Network Approach
- Strontium-Substituted Hydroxyapatite Coatings Deposited via a Co-Deposition Sputter Technique
- Surface modified biodegradable electrospun membranes as a carrier for human embryonic stem cell derived retinal pigment epithelial cells
- Synthesis and characterisation of nanophase hydroxyapatite co-substitutedwith strontium and zinc
- The deposition of strontium and zinc Co-substituted hydroxyapatite coatings
- The effect of pressurized and fast stabilization on one step batch foaming process for the investigation of cell structure formation
- The Effects of Exfoliation, Organic Solvents and Anodic Activation on Catalytic Hydrogen Evolution Reaction of Tungsten Disulfide
- The Effects of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG on Mechanical Properties of Long Bones and Body Composition in Immunodeficient Mice
- The Interplay of Quantum Confinement and Hydrogenation in Amorphous Silicon Quantum Dots
- The Surface Characterisation of Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) Modified via the Direct Sputter Deposition of Calcium Phosphate Thin Films
- Thermal characterisation with modelling for a microgravity experiment into polycrystalline equiaxed dendritic solidification with in-situ observation
- Three-Dimensional Electrohydrodynamic Printing and Spinning of Flexible Composite Structures for Oral Multidrug Forms
- Tri-Needle Coaxial Electrospray Engineering of Magnetic Polymer Yolk-Shell Particles Possessing Dual-Imaging Modality, Multiagent Compartments, and Trigger Release Potential
- Tuning the Bandgap Character of Quantum-Confined Si–Sn Alloyed Nanocrystals
- Understanding the depletion of electrons in dusty plasmas at atmospheric pressure
- Unraveling the cell-type dependent radiosensitizing effects of gold through the development of a multifunctional gold nanoparticle
- Urban wastewater disinfection for agricultural reuse: effect of solar driven AOPs in the inactivation of a multidrug resistant E. coli strain