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University of Southampton Malaysia Campus CEO wins Best Paper Award

Published: 24 November 2016
Professor John McBride, CEO of the University of Southampton Malaysia Campus

Professor John W. McBride has received a Best Paper Award for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Transactions on Components, Packaging and Manufacturing Technology in the Components: Characterisation and Modelling category.

Professor McBride receives the honour during his role as Chief Executive Officer of the University of Southampton Malaysia Campus, which offers an MEng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering across both Malaysian and English academic environments. Professor McBride, along with Professor Liudi Jiang and post-doctoral research fellow Adam Lewis, receive the honour for their paper entitled ‘Evolution of Voltage Transients during the Switching of a MEMs Relay With Au/MWCNT Contacts’, which was published in the December 2015 edition of the journal.

The paper presents a method for improving the lifetime of gold as the electric contact material for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) metal contact switches. This procedure consists of developing a gold-coated multi-walled carbon nanotube bilayer composite with experiments under two different hot switching conditions – a higher load current of 50 mA and a lower load current of 10 mA. The paper showed that stable contact resistance throughout the contact lifetime can be achieved under lower load current of 10 mA and over 500 million switching cycles.

“Using a combination of design and experimental methodologies, we found that gold-coated multi-walled carbon nanotube bilayer composite as a contact can withstand the damage caused by hot switching,” said McBride. “This work will enable us to make future MEMS more reliable and energy efficient.”

Prior to joining University of Southampton Malaysia Campus, Professor McBride was the Associate Dean of Research for Engineering and the Environment. As a lecturer in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, he specialised in electrical and contact physics and surface characterisation.

In 2006, he was awarded the IEEE Holm Scientific Achievement Award, an international award recognising outstanding scientists and engineers in the field of electrical contacts or related technologies. Two years later, he was team leader for the award of the international James A. Lindner Prize for research on the Sound Archive Project.

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