Future Cities and Infrastructure Engineering research

The city of the future is an unknown quantity, but what we can be certain of is that the way in which we live, work, travel, communicate and use information will be different from today.

The space in which we do this – predominately cities – needs to be able to adapt and keep our lives on track, whether this is to do with how we design and construct our buildings or how we manage and maintain infrastructure. For this, we also need to understand our cities through monitoring our infrastructure above and below the ground using both remote sensing technologies and embedded or attached sensors.

Environmental Engineering - Birmingham mailbox

Urban-environmental research at Birmingham is led by Professor Christopher Rogers , together with Dr Nicole MetjeDr David Chapman and Dr Dexter Hunt and a large team of post-doctoral and postgraduate researchers.  A few of this group’s current and recent world-leading projects, some of which are in collaboration with practitioners and other stakeholder partners in order to maximise the impact of the work, include:

Future Cities

Infrastructure Monitoring and Sensors

Environmental Engineering - mapping the underworld
Multi-sensor laboratory used in the field
  • Mapping the Underworld (MTU) - Using a multi-sensor device together with intelligent data fusion and information about the ground and from statutory records to detect the position of buried pipes and cables.
  • Assessing the Underworld (ATU): Exploring the use of geophysical tools based on the MTU multi-sensor platform, combined with in-pipe sensors, to assess the condition of the three interdependent infrastructures that operate in the street:
    • the buried pipes and cables, 
    • the ground in which they are buried, and 
    • the surface transport infrastructure that overlies them.
  • ATU includes the development of a Decision Support System to aid decision makers alongside a sustainable assessment framework by streetworks to assess different options.