Professor Michael Lancaster BSc, PhD, FIET, SMIEEE, FIPhys

Department of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering
Emeritus Professor of Communication Engineering

Contact details

School of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Professor Lancaster is Head of the Emerging Device Technology Research group working in the area of microwave circuits and components for communications and radar systems. His main interest is in passive circuits working at frequencies up to 300 GHz.

He has published nearly 300 research papers and two books. His research income since joining The University of Birmingham has been around £10m.


University of Bath. PhD in Physics 1980
BSc University of Bath. Physics with Geophysics. 1977


Michael J. Lancaster was born in England in 1958. He was educated at Bath University, UK, where he graduated with a degree in Physics in 1980. His career continued at Bath, where he was awarded a PhD in 1984 for research into non-linear underwater acoustics.

After leaving Bath University he joined the surface acoustic wave (SAW) group at the Department of Engineering Science at Oxford University as a Research Fellow. The research was in the design of new, novel SAW devices, including filters and filter banks. In 1987 he became a Lecturer at The University of Birmingham in the Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, lecturing in electromagnetic theory and microwave engineering. Shortly after he joined the department he began the study of the science and applications of high temperature superconductors, working mainly at microwave frequencies. He was promoted to head the Emerging Device Technology Research Centre in 2000 and head of the department of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering in 2003. His present personal research interests include microwave filters and antennas, as well as the high frequency properties and applications of a number of novel and diverse materials.

Professor Lancaster is Fellow of the IET and UK Institute of Physics. He is a Chartered Engineer and Chartered Physicist. In addition he is a fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy. He has served on the MTT IMS technical committee. Professor Lancaster has published two books and over 150 papers in refereed journals.


Teaching Programmes
• 1st Year Mathematics
• 4th year and MSc Electromagnetics and Antennas
• 4th year and MSc RF and Microwave Engineering



Professor Lancaster’s research interests are wide, and based on the drive to produce improved, high performance microwave circuits. To do this, he has help build the Emerging Device Technology (EDT) group into a multidisciplinary group, with the topics of materials science, physics and device engineering all being equally important. Superconductors, ferroelectrics and micromachined materials have been prominent, together with the development of new design principles for microwave circuits. Novelty and invention have been a theme throughout.


Professor Lancaster has received over £10M in funding for his research which includes four European Framework grants and 20 EPSRC grants. He has have written two books, one on high temperature superconducting passive circuits and the other on microwave circuit design. In addition he has over 150 refereed journal publications and 140 conference papers together with two granted patents.

Highlights of the research work include new multi-band superconducting and room temperature filters, the world’s best performing delay lines including new synthesis methods. He has developed new miniature tuneable filters and new fabrication and design techniques for micromachined microwave circuits.
Highlights of the impact of Professor Lancaster’s work include the setting up a company, CryoSystems, to commercialise superconducting filter technology for mobile telephone base stations. In addition he has been instrumental in the roll-out of superconducting filters for radio telescopes across the world and help develop outreach activities to the general public and young people. This involved the media as well as specific events. He has appeared on BBC radio 4 describing the applications of his work.

Other activities

Professor Lancaster was invited to join the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques (MTT) Society International Microwave Symposium (IMS) technical program committee and has served on this for six years. He has had a similar time on the European Microwave Conference Technical Committee, chairing subcommittees of both societies on several occasions.
Professor Lancaster has had many invitations to speak at conferences and limit this to one or two per year. He was organiser of workshops in Malaysia (APACE’03), Paris (EuMC), Korea (ICE-2005), Manchester (EuMc) and Joint organiser and co-chair of the 2006 biannual HTSHFF conference at Cardiff University. He has had appointments on seven committee chairs (Malaysia, USA, Ukraine, Korea, UK, Canada). In addition was invited to give short courses in Malaysia (APACE-03), Finland (SCENET-05,) Italy (SCNET-06) and has been chair of conference sessions in Switzerland, USA, Japan, Austria, France and in addition to the above has given eight invited lecturers across the world. In addition he has have reviewed grant applications Hong Kong, Ireland, Holland, India, Singapore and was consultant on the NATO Science for Peace program (2001-2004).


10 selected publications 
Professor Lancaster has published around 300 conference and journal papers. The summary below lists the top 10.

1. Design of highly selective microstrip bandpass filters with a single pair of attenuation poles at finite frequencies Hong JS, Lancaster MJ, IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MICROWAVE THEORY AND TECHNIQUES V48(7) pp 1098-1107 JUL 2000 Citations 89

2. On the performance of HTS microstrip quasi-elliptic function filters for mobile communications application Hong JS, Lancaster MJ, Jedamzik D, et al. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MICROWAVE THEORY AND TECHNIQUES Volume: 48(7) pp1240-1246 JUL 2000 Citations 43

3. Coplanar quarter-wavelength quasi-elliptic filters without bond-wire bridges Zhou JF, Lancaster MJ, Huang F IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MICROWAVE THEORY AND TECHNIQUES V52(4) pp1150-1156 APR 2004 Citations 24

4. Barium strontium titanate thin film varactors for room-temperature microwave device applications Bao P, Jackson TJ, Wang X, Lancaster M et al. JOURNAL OF PHYSICS D-APPLIED PHYSICS V 41(6) 063001 MAR 21 2008 Citations 21

5. Compact meander slot antennas Wang HY, Simkin J, Emson C, Lancaster M J et al. MICROWAVE AND OPTICAL TECHNOLOGY LETTERS V24(6) pp 377-380 MAR 20 2000 Citations17

6. SU-8 Ka-band filter and its microfabrication Jiang K, Lancaster MJ, Llamas-Garro I, et al. JOURNAL OF MICROMECHANICS AND MICROENGINEERING V15(8) pp1522-1526 AUG 2005 Citations 15

7. Nonlinear microwave properties of high T-c thin films elichko AV, Lancaster MJ, Porch A SUPERCONDUCTOR SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY V18( 3) pp R24-R49 MAR 2005 Citations 15

8. Superconducting spiral filters with quasi-elliptic characteristic for radio astronomy Zhang GY, Huang F, Lancaster MJ IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MICROWAVE THEORY AND TECHNIQUES V53(3) pp947-951 MAR 2005 Citations 14

9. Anomalies in the microwave power-dependent surface impedance of YBa2Cu3O7-x thin films Velichko AV, Lancaster MJ, Chakalov RA, et al. PHYSICAL REVIEW B V65(10) 104522 MAR 1 2002 Citations 13

10. The design of microstrip six-pole quasi-elliptic filter with linear phase response using extracted-pole technique Yeo KSK, Lancaster MJ, Hong JS IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MICROWAVE THEORY AND TECHNIQUES V49(2) pp 321-327 FEB 2001 Citations 13

Research monographs

1. Hong J.-S. and Lancaster M. J. ‘Microstrip filters for RF/microwave applications’ John Wiley and Sons Inc. 2001 ISBN 0-471-38877-7

2. MJ Lancaster, TW Button. 2001. High Tempereature Superconducting Thick Films for Microwave Applications (In Microwave Superconductivity, M Nisenoff, H Weinstock (Editors), 1-4020-0445-1, 91-115).

Granted patents
1. ‘Elliptical resonators and radio frequency filter formed therefrom’, International patent classification H01P 1/203, 7/08. 1/213, International application number PCT/GB0/01164 ,Filing date 16/3/2001. Inventor M. J. Lancaster

2. ‘A radio frequency filter’, International patent classification HO1P 1/213, International application number PCT/GB01/01188, Filing date 16/3/2001. Inventer M J Lancaster

View all publications in research portal