Dr Paul Bills
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Paul studied for a BEng in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Birmingham, graduating in 1999. He then moved on to complete an MSc in Engineering Design and Its Management at the University of Huddersfield, graduating in 2000.
As a direct result of his MSc work Paul went to work for DePuy International Ltd, a leading orthopaedics manufacturing company and part of the Johnson and Johnson group of companies. His work there led on to a PhD with the Surface Metrology Group at the Centre for Precision Technologies under the supervision of Prof Liam Blunt and Prof Jane Jiang with most of the project work completed at DePuy in Leeds and leading to graduation in 2008. Paul's PhD work involved the development of methods for the simulation and characterisation of wear in orthopaedic knee replacement joints.
In 2007 Paul was taken on as a Research Fellow at the Centre for Precision Technologies and is now a Senior Research Fellow within the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Advanced Metrology where he has developed a reputation as a world renowned expert on the subject of orthopaedic wear measurement. Paul has had a large number of publications on this subject and has given a number of prestigious invited lectures. He is an active member of standards development bodies and constantly develops and advocates the use of measurement best practice.
Paul is always open to new collaborations within the insitution or without and is involved with a number of interdisciplinary research projects with colleagues in Forensics, Physics, History and Art & Design. Paul was one of the founder members of the Skin Interface Science Group and is a key member of the Arms and Armour Research Institute
His current research interests include measurement of clinical wear in retrieved bearings, computed tomography, three-dimensional ballistics measurement, application of metrology to archaeology, fusion of metrological data and industrial vocational pedagogy.
Outside of his research Paul has keen interests in music and sport, and is a long suffering supporter of Barnsley FC.
Research & Scholarship
Paul is a Senior Research Fellow in the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Advanced Metrology and his main research interests lie in the application of metrology to assess functionality of components and surfaces. His current projects are in the area of characterization of retrieved orthopaedic implants, measurement uncertainty, applications of computed tomography, metrology for forensics, application of metrology to archaeology and industrial metrology education. Paul is actively involved in the development of best practice and is an active contributor to standards bodies. The majority of Paul’s work is in the area of form measurement, encompassing the measurement and specification of geometry and surface characterization.
Paul has developed a reputation as a world renowned expert on the subject of orthopaedic wear measurement and has a large number of publications on this subject and has given a number of prestigious invited lectures. He is currently working with the London Implant Retrieval Centre and colleagues at University College London to develop a best practice method for determining the geometry of retrieved implants and determining their ultimate mode of failure. The overall aim of this research is to produce an overarching measurement methodology that is established from first principles and can be universally applied to the measurement of retrieved hip replacements. The furthering of understanding in this area has great implications for society through the ability to close the loop of understanding and develop more effective, longer lasting joint replacements.
Paul is an active member of standards development bodies looking at the subjects of wear measurement and industrial use of computed tomography and he constantly develops and advocates the use of measurement best practice. Paul is a member of the ASTM Committee F04 on Medical and Surgical Materials and Devices and is a member of the US TAG to ISO/TC150. Along with colleague Dr Leigh Fleming of the EPSRC CIMAM Paul is leading a consortium to promote and publish good practice in the surface measurement of orthopaedic implants.
Paul is an executive board member and the registered UK lead tutor and training manager for the EU wide metrology education ‘driving licence’ known as 'CMTrain' which is an industrially focused vocational blended training course in co-ordinate metrology and metrology best-practice. The course has three levels from ‘Operator’ to ‘Expert’ and is performed with a combination of distance ‘in-situ’ learning and attendance based workshops. The course has been adopted by a number of companies such as Rolls Royce and Hewlett Packard as a component of their core training for their engineering metrologists.
Paul is working in partnership with colleagues at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) on next generation training programmes and has recently received a research grant as part of the Leonardo da Vinci Lifelong Learning Programme. The project involves leading European universities and national institute partners to create a training course on the subject of measurement uncertainty. This course adopts a blended learning approach and is aimed at bridging the gap in knowledge within industry regarding the effect of uncertainty on all aspects of measurement.
Paul has a number of interdisciplinary projects utilising industrial computed tomography encompassing areas of engineering, forensics and archaeology. CT is a technology that is growing in use and performance having been adopted by a number of engineering companies. Paul is a founder member of the BSI UK task force to define and build standards in this area and the aim is to encourage best practice based on a deeper understanding of the technology.
Paul is a key member of the Arms and Armour Research Group, a multidisciplinary team of academics involved in the discovery and analysis of historical artefacts, military weaponry and historical sites, with a particular emphasis on using cutting edge science and technology breakthroughs to carry out this research and offer a commercial service.
- EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Advanced Metrology
- Arms and Armour Research Group
- Skin Interface Science Group
- Computing and Engineering Pedagogical Research Group
Particular areas of research include
- Metrology of medical implants
- Measurement uncertainty
- Co-ordinate metrology
- Industrial application and best practice in micro-CT
- Application of Metrology to Archaeology
- Artefact Authentication
- Metrology for medical applications
- Forensic Metrology for Ballistics
- Bridging the gap between dimensional and surface metrology
- Industrial metrology education (pedagogy)
- Development of international standards
- Data Fusion
- European Commission, Leonardo da Vinci Programme Blended Learning course on Measurement Uncertainty for advanced vocational training (mVoT) 2012-2014, 49,179
- Orthopaedic Research UK Metal-on-metal hip replacements: Solving the uncertainties, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 14th December 2011
- Orthopaedic Research UK Metal-on-metal hip replacements: Re-Solving the uncertainties, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 28th May 2012.
- Orthopaedic Research UK Are Modular Hip Junctions An Issue?, The Royal Society of Medicine, London, 29th April 2013.
Publications and Other Research Outputs
Matthies, A., Racasan, R., Bills, P., Blunt, L., Cro, S., Panagiotidou, A., Blunn, G., Skinner, J. and Hart, A. (2013) ‘Material Loss at the Taper Junction of Retrieved Large Head Metal-on-Metal Total Hip Replacements’ Journal of Orthopaedic Research , 31 (11), pp. 1677-1685. ISSN 0736-0266
Hothi, H., Matthies, A., Berber, R., Whittaker, R., Bills, P., Racasan, R., Blunn, G., Skinner, J. and Hart, A. (2013) ‘The reliability of a semi-quantitative scoring method for taper corrosion and fretting, and its usefulness for predicting the volume of material loss’. In: International Society for Technology in Arthroplasty 26th Annual Congress, 16-19 October 2013, Palm Beach, Florida, USA
Groschl, A., Akkasoglu, G., Loderer, A., Plowucha, W., Werner, T., Bills, P. and Hausotte, T. (2013) ‘MUVOT - Establishing an International Vocational Training Program on the Topic of Measurement Uncertainty’. In: 11th International Symposium on Measurement and Quality Control, 11-13 September 2013, Cracow-Kielce, Poland
McHugh, M., Bills, P. and Vanin, S. (2013) ‘PMI estimation in submerged bones: a new strategy’. In: International Conference on Forensic Sciences, 8th-9th July 2013, London
Hothi, H., Cro, S., Bills, P., Blunt, L., Racasan, R., Blunn, G., Skinner, J. and Hart, A. (2013) ‘Correlation between the detailed visual inspection of retrieved metal-on-metal hips and their volumetric wear’. In: International Society for Technology in Arthroplasty 26th Annual Congress, 16-19 October 2013, Palm Beach, Florida, USA
Fleming, L., Racasan, R., Bills, P., Skinner, J., Hart, A. and Blunt, L. (2013) ‘Characterisation of wear morphology at the head-cup bearing interface in retrieved metal-on-metal hip replacements’. In: International Society for Technology in Arthroplasty 26th Annual Congress, 16-19 October 2013, Palm Beach, Florida, USA
Lou, S., Jiang, X., Bills, P. and Scott, P. (2013) ‘Defining True Tribological Contact Through Application of the Morphological Method to Surface Topography’ Tribology Letters , 50 (2), pp. 185-193. ISSN 1023-8883
Racasan, R., Bills, P., Blunt, L. and Xiao, S. (2013) ‘Measurement of material loss’. In: Are Modular Hip Junctions An Issue?, 29th April 2013, The Royal Society of Medicine, London
Bills, P., Blunt, L., Racasan, R., Skinner, J. and Hart, A. (2013) ‘Accurate determination of material loss at the taper interface of retrieved metal-on-metal hip replacements’. In: 19th International Conference on Wear of Materials, 14-18th April 2013, Portland, Oregon USA
Bills, P., Racasan, R., Tessier, P. and Blunt, L. (2013) ‘Assessing the wear of the modular taper interface in retrieved metal-on-metal hip replacements’. In: 14th International Conference on Metrology and Properties of Engineering Surfaces (Met & Props 2013) , June 17-21, 2013, Taipei, Taiwan
Hart, A., Matthies, A., Bills, P., Racasan, R., Blunn, G., Blunt, L. and Skinner, J. (2013) ‘The taper junction contributes one third of the total volumetric material loss in large diameter metal-on-metal hip arthroplasties’. In: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Annual Meeting, March 19-23 2013, Chicago, IL, USA
Hart, A., Matthies, A., Racasan, R., Bills, P., Panagiotidou, A., Blunt, L., Blunn, G. and Skinner, J. (2012) ‘Taper wear contributes only a third of the total volumetirc material loss in large head metal on metal hip replacement’. In: British Orthopaedic Research Society Annual Meeting, September 24th-25th 2012, London, UK
Matthies, A., Racasan, R., Bills, P., Panagiotidou, A., Blunt, L., Skinner, J., Blunn, G. and Hart, A. (2012) ‘Corrosion is the main mechanism of material loss at the taper junction of large head metal on metal hip replacements’. In: British Orthopaedic Society Annual Meeting, September 24th-25th 2012, London, UK
Bills, P., Racasan, R., Hart, A., Skinner, J., Jiang, X. and Blunt, L. (2012) ‘Using metrology to bridge the gap in understanding between engineering and biological failure: the case of metal-on-metal hip replacements’. In: 1st Annual EPSRC Manufacturing the Future Conference, 19th-20th September 2012, Loughborough, UK
Bills, P., Racasan, R., Hart, A., Skinner, J. and Blunt, L. (2012) ‘Accurate determination of clinical wear in retrieved metal-on-metal hip replacement joints’. In: Euro-Mediterranean Conference on Bioengineering and Biomaterials, 4th-6th July 2012, Fes, Morocco
Bills, P. and Blunt, L. (2012) ‘Measurement of Bearing Surfaces’. In: Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements: Re-solving The Uncertainties, 28th May 2012, Royal College of Surgeons of England, London
Blunt, L., Bills, P. and Racasan, R. (2012) ‘Measurement of Tapers’. In: Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements: Re-solving The Uncertainties, 28th May 2012, Royal College of Surgeons of England, London
Bills, P., Racasan, R., Skinner, J., Hart, A. and Blunt, L. (2012) ‘Effect of Uncertainty on Wear Measurement of Metal-on-metal Total Hip Replacement Components’. In: ASTM Symposium on Metal-on-Metal Total hip Replacement Devices, 8th May 2012, Phoenix, AZ, USA
Hexter, A., Blunn, G., Bills, P., Panagiotidou, A., Matthies, A., Skinner, J. and Hart, A. (2012) ‘The Definition of Taper Failure in Metal-On-Metal Modular Total Hip Replacement’. In: ASTM Symposium on Metal-on-Metal Total Hip Replacement Devices, 8th May 2012, Phoenix, AZ, USA
Bills, P., Lou, S. and Jiang, X. (2012) ‘Development of morphological filtering method for specification and characterisation of hip replacement taper junctions’. In: 12th International Conference of the European Society for Precision Engineering and Nanotechnology, 4th-8th June 2012, Stockholm, Sweden
Bills, P., Racasan, R., Underwood, R., Cann, P., Skinner, J., Hart, A., Jiang, X. and Blunt, L. (2012) ‘Volumetric wear assessment of retrieved metal-on-metal hip prostheses and the impact of measurement uncertainty’ Wear , 274, pp. 212-219. ISSN 0043-1648
Bills, P. and Blunt, L. (2011) ‘Wear Measurement of MoM Hips’. In: Orthopaedic Research UK Meeting Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements: Solving The Uncertainties, 14th December 2011, Royal College of Surgeons, London, UK
Bills, P., Underwood, R., Sayles, R., Cann, P., Hart, A., Blunt, L. and Jiang, X. (2011) ‘Taper Wear in Large Head Metal-on-Metal Hips’. In: International Conference on BioTribology 2011, 18th - 21th September 2011, Imperial College
Zeng, S., Blunt, L., Jiang, X. and Bills, P. (2010) ‘Investigation of the material removal characteristic for polishing CoCr alloy’. In: Future Technologies in Computing and Engineering: Proceedings of Computing and Engineering Annual Researchers' Conference 2010: CEARC10. Huddersfield: University of Huddersfield. pp. 177-182. ISBN 9781862180932
Bills, P., Underwood, R., Cann, P., Hart, A., Jiang, X. and Blunt, L. (2010) ‘What is required to measure the wear of explanted metal-on-metal hips?’. In: British Orthopaedic Research Society Annual Meeting, 12th-13th July 2010, Cardiff University
Bills, P. and Cunningham, J. (2009) ‘Determination of clinical wear in retrieved total hip replacement joints using shadowgraph and co-ordinate measurement methods’. In: Internatiional Conference on Bioengineering and Biomaterials, 18 - 20 March 2009, ENSAM, Meknes, Morocco
Blunt, L., Bills, P., Jiang, X., Hardacker, C. and Chakrararty, G. (2009) ‘The role of tribology and metrology in the latest development of bio-materials’ Wear , 266 (3-4), pp. 424-431. ISSN 0043-1648
Blunt, L., Bills, P., Jiang, X. and Chakrabarty, G. (2008) ‘Improvement in the assessment of wear of total knee replacements using coordinate-measuring machine techniques’ Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine , 222 (3), pp. 309-318. ISSN 0954-4119
Bills, P., Blunt, L. and Chakrabarty, G. (2008) ‘Developing techniques for the dimensional assessment of true clinical wear in retrieved total joint replacements’. In: Materials for Improved Wear Resistance of Total Artificial Joints. Eibar, Spain: Tekniker. pp. 109-118. ISBN 978-84-932064-4-4
Bills, P., Blunt, L. and Jiang, X. (2007) ‘Development of a technique for accurately determining clinical wear in explanted total hip replacements’ Wear , 263 (7-12), pp. 1133-1137. ISSN 0043-1648
Bills, P (2007) The development of a geometric methodology for the determination of volumetric wear in total joint replacements & development of a total knee replacement joint using new and novel measurement techniques. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.
Bills, P., Blunt, L. and Jiang, X. (2006) ‘A metrology solution for determination of form deviation and wear in orthopaedic joint replacements’. In: 33rd Leeds-Lyon Symposium on Tribology, Tuesday 12th - Friday 15th September 2006, Trinity and all Saints College, Leeds
Blunt, L., Bills, P., Hardaker, C. and Pantelis, C. (2006) ‘The use of CMM techniques to assess the wear of total knee replacements ’. In: Nodtrib 2006 - The 12th Nordic Symposium on Tribology. Lyngby, Denmark: DTU Tryk. p. 61. ISBN 87-90416-17-1
Bills, P., Brown, L., Jiang, X. and Blunt, L. (2005) ‘A metrology solution for the orthopaedic industry’ Journal of Physics , Series 13, pp. 316-319. ISSN 1742-6596
Bills, P., Blunt, L. and Hardaker, C. (2004) ‘The use of CMM techniques to assess the functionality of total knee replacements’. In: 8th International Symposium on Measurement and Quality Control in Production. Dusseldorf, Germany: VDI Verlag GmbH. pp. 73-80. ISBN 3-18-091860-8
Paul is a reviewer for the following journals: Wear, Tribology International, Precision Engineering
Research Degree Supervision
- 'Development of evaluation framework for assessment of retrieved bearing measurement protocols'
- Accuracy and verification of CT Scanners
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