Dr Simon Bell PhD

Dr Simon Bell

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Research Fellow

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


  • PhD in Computer Science (Aston University 2015)
  • MSc in Applied Meteorology & Climatology (University of Birmingham 2011)
  • BSc Physical Geography (University of Sheffield 2010)


From 2014 to 2020 Simon has worked on the Wintersense project (wintersense.com). Combining cutting-edge hardware and software to make road surface temperature observations at a spatial resolution previously unattainable. Such a system allows winter road managers to more efficiently manage the gritting of roads over the winter season. This solution has recently been licensed to Campbell Scientific Ltd.

Since 2019 Simon has led the technical side of the Birmingham Urban Observatory (birminghamurbanobservatory.com). This research platform enables insights into urban phenomena, from heat waves, to flooding, to air pollution and much more.

Over the last few years Simon has also applied the developed software and hardware to the infamous "leaves on the line" problem, where autumnal leaf-fall causes low adhesion on railway tracks.


Simon's research sits at the intersection between Meteorology, Web Development and the Internet of Things. In particular how real-time software platforms are used to manage, store and visualise meteorological data.


Recent publications


Thomas, R, Mackenzie, A, Reynolds, S, Sadler, J, Cropley, F, Bell, S, Dugdale, S, Chapman, L, Quinn, A & Cai, X 2018, 'Avian Sensor Packages for Meteorological Measurements', Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, vol. 99, no. 3, pp. 499-511. https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-16-0181.1

Chapman, L & Bell, S 2018, 'High-resolution monitoring of weather impacts on infrastructure networks using the internet of things', Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, pp. 1147-1154. https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-17-0214.1

Chapman, L, Bell, C & Bell, S 2016, 'Can the crowdsourcing data paradigm take atmospheric science to a new level? A case study of the Urban Heat Island of London quantified using Netatmo weather stations', International Journal of Climatology. https://doi.org/10.1002/joc.4940

View all publications in research portal