The School of Mechanical Engineering is pleased to have achieved a very good performance in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) – the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. 85% of the research in the School was rated as world-leading or internationally excellent.

Professor Duc Pham, Head of School, commented: “Our REF results give us a good platform from which to build in 2015. We are optimistic in the School with the high calibre of research staff and the potential for collaboration and industrially-focussed research afforded by work with the Manufacturing Technology Centre, for example. Our broad research themes going forward focus on Advanced Manufacturing, Bio-medical and Micro and Nano Engineering, and Vehicle and Engine Technology. We have extensive research facilities including the most advanced engine testing facilities in the Europe.

“Our interdisciplinary research has benefitted our industrial partners in the aerospace, automotive, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing and transport sectors.  Those include world-leading companies, such as Airbus, Delcam, GKN, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Johnson and Johnson, Johnson Matthey, Rolls-Royce, and Shell.  The latest example of our impactful work is the Partitioned Brake Pad project which recently won the Institution of Engineering and Technology Innovation Award 2014 in the Transport category.  The project addresses the long standing issue of brake noise in automotive disc brakes, which costs Original Equipment Manufacturers millions of pounds in warranty claims each year. The new Brake Pad is capable of significantly reducing brake noise and increasing the braking power by more than 30%. This innovative product will have a significant impact on the environment, as it will shed less friction pad dust during its life."

The School of Mechanical Engineering is part of the University’s College of Engineering and Physical Sciences which draws together research strengths across the academic schools to focus on the wider research themes of Advanced Manufacturing, Science Frontiers, and Resilience, Energy and Sustainability. Professor John Bridgeman, College Director of Research, said: “The School of Mechanical Engineering is a key contributor to our overall objectives within our research theme of Advanced Manufacturing. Research undertaken by colleagues in the School is introducing innovative and transformational changes in the manufacturing sector, and is positioning the University and region as the UK’s research and development centre in this area.”

Learn more about the School of Mechanical Engineering’s research strengths and the over-arching College research themes