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New Centre for Doctoral Training

UCL and Cambridge announce new Integrated Photonic and Electronic Systems (IPES) CDT

ieps-logo.jpgUCL and Cambridge University have successfully gained funding for a new Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Integrated Photonic and Electronic Systems (IPES). The new Centre builds on the enormous success of the EPSRC funded collaboration between these two world-leading universities who set up a joint CDT for Photonic Systems Development in 2009.

The new Centre aims to train researchers to lead a new generation of industries providing products and systems, based on the close and optimal integration of photonics with electronics. The Centre brings together multi-disciplinary, cutting edge research activities from groups in photonics, communications, electronic engineering, nanotechnology, physics, materials, computer science, manufacturing, biomedical engineering, biotechnology, civil engineering and chemical engineering with contributions from more than 35 collaborating companies to provide an outstanding training environment for its students. The funding announced today will enable 5 cohorts of PhD students to be trained in the Centre over the next 8 years.

Director of the new Centre, Professor Alwyn Seeds from UCL Electronic and Electrical Engineering said:

We are delighted that the EPSRC have funded the new Centre in Integrated Photonic and Electronic Systems. Given the success of our existing Centre in Photonic Systems Development over the last 5 years, we believe that the time is now right for the new Centre to move ahead and address new integrative technologies for future products and systems. Photonics is embedded within a very wide range of systems, ranging from sensing through data centres and communications to displays. In almost every case photonics must be combined with electronics and software to create a working system.

The new Centre builds on work we have already undertaken to broaden the training of researchers to strengthen their appreciation of the systems context of technology research. Our aim will now be to increase pull-through of underpinning work in the physical and material sciences to advance the integration of photonic and electronic systems, leading to step improvements in >electronic system performance through the use of photonics technology, radical systems cost reduction and a broadening of the applications field for electronics and photonics. To do this we have brought together key research groups from Cambridge and UCL to create a training environment of unparalleled richness.

UK Photonics and UK electronics are large industries with annual revenues of £10 billion and £29billion respectively. We have been very pleased to have the strong support of more than 35 leading companies who will contribute to the work of the new Centre. Together we will train researchers to create a new generation of products and systems where photonics and electronics are fully and optimally integrated. The change in systems that this will enable is as profound as the development of the Personal Computer from a simple stand-alone device to the fully networked information appliance that we have today. The benefits to the UK economy will be correspondingly large."

The CDT in Integrated Photonic and Electronic Systems is one of 70 Centres for Doctorial Training which will share £350 million of EPSRC funding that will be used to train 3,500 post graduate students across 24 universities. Funding for the centres was announced today by Universities and Science Minister, David Willetts.

Science Minister David Willetts said:

“Scientists and engineers are vital to our economy and society. It is their talent and imagination, as well as their knowledge and skills that inspire innovation and drive growth across a range of sectors, from manufacturing to financial services.

I am particularly pleased to see strong partnerships between universities, industry and business among the new centres announced today. This type of collaboration is a key element of our industrial strategy and will continue to keep us at the forefront of the global science race.”

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For more information:
Name: Tim Bodley-Scott - Business Development and Marketing Officer
Department: UCL Electronic and Electrical Engineering
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7679 3976
Fax: +44(0) 20 7388 9325
Email: t.bodley-scott@ucl.ac.uk