The University of Southampton

Two ECS academics awarded Personal Chairs

Published: 
29 June 2011
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ECS academics Dr Steve Beeby and Dr Seth Bullock have been awarded Personal Chairs.

Steve joined the University of Southampton Institute of Transducer Technology (USITT) in 1993 where he completed his PhD on the subject of optimising the design of micromechanical silicon resonators and stress isolating packaging. He then joined ECS as a member of the Electronic Systems and Devices Group and has been researching in the field of MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) and Microsystems (MST) devices for over 10 years.

Steve was awarded a prestigious EPSRC Leadership Fellowship last year to undertake research on generating energy through people’s movement, eliminating the need to change batteries on devices. His team will use rapid printing processes and active printed inks to create an energy-harvesting film in textiles. This film can also be printed on carpets, enabling individuals to generate energy as they walk around the home or office.

The research, which begins in October and runs until 2015, will provide a toolbox of materials and processes suitable for a range of different fabrics that will enable users to develop the energy harvesting fabric best suited to their requirements.

Steve commented: "I am very proud to have been awarded a personal Chair, which is a significant milestone in my career. The support of my colleagues, the excellent facilities and the dynamic work ethic within ECS have been incredibly important and I look forward to building up my research further in the future."

Seth joined the University of Southampton in 2005 as Senior Lecturer, and helped to found the Science and Engineering of Natural Systems (SENSe) research group. In 2009 he became head of the SENSe group, and also became Director of Southampton's new Institute for Complex Systems Simulation (ICSS).

"My research is very collaborative", he says, "I'm interested in developing models of complex systems and using them to engage with the questions and concerns of scientists and practitioners involved with those systems. That means that almost everything that I've done has owed a lot to the people that I've worked with, and in particular to my amazing students and post-docs.

"The wider complexity science activity at Southampton has grown enormously in size and in status since I joined the University in 2005, and now involves academics across the entire campus and many millions of pounds worth of investment in research. With the arrival of our two newest faculty appointments, James Dyke and Markus Brede, the SENSe group within ECS is certainly one of the most significant complexity science groups in the country, recognised as nationally leading by the UK's research councils, and, with the help of colleagues across the University, running an extremely ambitious doctoral training programme in complex systems simulation.

"We are currently experiencing a rapid increase in the significance of "systems" questions such as those concerning global finance, global sustainability, global climate change, global technology, global food security, global governance, and global security. Answering these questions will involve understanding complex systems made up of many parts that interact in sometimes subtle ways. The challenge for my colleagues and myself is to make sure that our complexity science research engages with these questions in ways that make a positive difference."

For further information contact Joyce Lewis; tel. +44(0)23 8059 5453.

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