Great Future

94.6% of our undergraduate students go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating

(Destinations of Leavers Survey 2013/14)

Uni develops vital technology for CERN Large Hadron Collider


Large Hadron Collider collimator – view along the beam path

Fri, 26 Aug 2016 09:50:00 BST

£639,000 project will create new collimators for the Large Hadron Collider’s luminosity upgrade

Top view of open collimator ► Top view of open collimator

SCIENTISTS and engineers at the University of Huddersfield are to develop vital new technology for the world’s most famous research facility – the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

Professor Roger Barlow Based at the Swiss headquarters of CERN – the European Organisation for Nuclear Research – the LHC is the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator.  There is a project to increase the amount of data that the experiments can gather in their search for new particles, by boosting the LHC’s luminosity.  But for this to be successful it is vital that improvements are made to the collimation system.

A crucial part of the LHC, this consists of devices – collimators – which ensure that beams of accelerated particles that travel around in bunches are cleaned and do not veer off, causing serious damage.

‌“It would be a disaster if that happened.  The whole LHC would be shut down for many months,” said Professor Roger Barlow (pictured left), a leading particle physicist who heads the International Institute for Accelerator Applications at the University of Huddersfield.

With colleagues at the University of Manchester, he has been carrying out computer simulations of the LHC’s collimation system.  When the UK’s Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) began to collaborate with CERN on the LHC’s luminosity upgrade, Professor Barlow was enlisted to develop programs and simulations that would enable the development of new collimators. 

Dr Simon Fletcher

He knew that an ideal candidate to lead the design and manufacture of a prototype collimator would be Dr Simon Fletcher (pictured left), of the Engineering Control and Machine Performance Research Group that is part of the University of Huddersfield’s Centre for Precision Technology, globally respected for its work in metrology and advanced manufacturing.

‌‌Professor Barlow and Dr Fletcher have been awarded a total of £639,336 comprising contributions from both STFC and CERN in order to carry out work on the vital LHC upgrade and Dr Fletcher has now embarked on a three-year work package that will lead to the production of a new collimator prototype.

CERN’s Large Hadron Collider

► CERN’s Large Hadron Collider

He describes the collimator as essentially two opposing jaws – about 1.2 metres in length that sit in close proximity to the beam.  They have to be manufactured from material such as carbon fibre reinforced carbon composite that can absorb radiation since their role is to “tidy up” stray particles and for this they have to be absolutely straight and parallel.

To ensure this, Dr Fletcher plans a switch from a passive to an active system for the LHC’s collimators.

“Simulations and operational experience show that the jaws can lose their straightness over long operating periods and during highly energetic impact events, which affects the performance and the efficiency.  We are therefore proposing to add sensors that pick up any distortion and we will design and install some actuators that will then deform the jaws to make them straight again,” he said.

A research assistant will be appointed to work with Dr Fletcher on the collimator design and the successful candidate will spend a large part of their time at CERN in Switzerland.  The prototype collimator will be designed and built at the University of Huddersfield using in-house machining and metrology facilities, along with specialist local advanced manufacturing firms.



Read more news

University prepares to break Guinness World Record

Guinness world record

Wed, 24 Aug 2016 10:06:00 BST

The record attempt will take place on European Researchers' Night on the 30 September

Breast cancer awareness month logo THE University of Huddersfield is holding its cards close to its chest as it prepares to become a world-record holder whilst helping to raise awareness of breast cancer ahead of October, the Breast Cancer Awareness month.

While most people are aware of the disease many forget to take the steps to have it detected in the early stages which is vital for survival. 

Heading the attempt is Dr Christopher Cooper (pictured below) a Senior Lecturer in Biological Sciences whose research takes a multi-disciplinary approach to studying proteins involved in the DNA damage response and genome integrity in human cancers.  Also helping is the expertise of Dr Richard Bingham.

The Guinness World Record attempt, which is still under wraps, will take place on the 30 September during European Researcher’s Night, an evening open to all which will see youngsters taking part in free and fun activities all over the University’s campus.

Huddersfield is the only host in Yorkshire for the European-wide event which sees a total of one million people taking part annually from across Europe in major university towns and cities.

This year’s theme is Full STEAM ahead, where STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths, and the University’s exciting and varied research will be on show. 

Dr Christopher Cooper In addition to the record attempt the evening’s attractions will include hands-on experiments, interactive science shows, learning activities for children and guided visits of research labs which are usually closed to the public.   Children are also encouraged to enter the various competitions available.

Esmay Walker, Research and Impact Officer at the University, said the evening promises to be a fun and memorable night for everyone.

“With all of the events happening during the evening we are hoping that we can inspire older children to consider a career in research and help people to understand how important research is,” she said.

The events are funded by the European Commission as part of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, which is an EU programme to boost European research careers.

Read more news

International collaboration for public relations project

Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain

Pictured above is Professor Elena Gutiérrez García who will be working alongside Professor Anne Gregory (shown below) in studying the capabilities of public relations and communication professionals around the world

Tue, 23 Aug 2016 10:50:00 BST

Nine countries join forces to create Capability Framework with the support of Global Alliance and the Cabinet Office

Global Alliance THE University of Huddersfield continues to develop international research partnerships with institutions around the world.

‌Professor Anne Gregory is one of nine international partners embarking on a two-year research project studying the capabilities of public relations and communication professionals around the world.  Professor Gregory is joined by academics from Spain, Sweden, South Africa, Singapore, Australia, Canada, USA, and Argentina.

The project is funded by a University Research Fund grant of £160,000 and has the support of the Global Alliance – the international association of communication professional bodies, the Cabinet Office and the national communication or PR directors of professional associations in each of the participating countries.

Research will be carried out in each of the nine countries with each partner working closely with their professional associations. The research activity will take place in 2016-2017 and the results, which will be a global capability framework, will then be shared worldwide. 

Cabinet Office One of the partners in this global research project, currently visiting the University of Huddersfield, is Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain. Professor Gutiérrez-García works in the Faculty of Communication, the oldest communication school established in Spain in 1958. As the Director of the Master’s in Political and Corporate Communication, recognised as the the premier communication course in Spain, Professor Gutierrez-García teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Having met Professor Gregory at an international research conference four years ago a partnership was developed between the two institutions. Professor Gutiérrez-García is currently in Huddersfield on a prestigious scholarship from the Ministry of Education in Spain for three months which provides researchers with the opportunity to work with other institutions as part of an international research team.

Professor Anne Gregory (pictured below right) has worked with Professor Gutiérrez-García for the past three years and visits Spain each year as a visiting professor teaching on the Master’s in Corporate and Political Communication. 

Establishing standards for the PR industry

Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain (left) with Professor Anne Gregory As with other professions such as law, medicine and accounting; public relations and communication requires its own internationally recognised standards. By developing a Global Capability Framework this research will help to establish capability criteria for the profession.

The researchers recognise that as well as developing a framework which shares common core competencies, it is also necessary to adapt practice within each country according to local differences.

These differences include contrasting cultural and political environments with varying levels of decision making power depending on, for example, levels of bureaucracy and very diverse media landscapes, with a variety of attitudes towards transparency and accountability. Corporate communication also has different levels of resources available for continuing professional development with some countries having no academic programmes, or professional qualifications at all.

Following the comparison and analysis of the research findings the aim is to clearly define the core skills, knowledge and behaviours required to work in this profession, whilst taking into account the significant differences in the way it is practiced in different continents and countries.

The Global Capability Framework will be a benchmark against which national professional bodies and employers internationally can measure the capability of their professional communities. 

Read more news

U.S. students will flock to town for cultural exchange

USA flag and students

Fri, 19 Aug 2016 14:50:00 BST

“…the partnerships will offer more students the opportunity to spend a term/semester studying in Huddersfield…”

Generation Study Abroad A CROSS-Atlantic collaboration has been forged to increase the number of American students taking part in study-exchange programmes at the University of Huddersfield.

The initiative called Generation Study Abroad was launched by the Institute of International Education (IIE) after it was documented that fewer than 10 per cent of US students gain international experience during their studies.

“Globalisation has changed the way the world works and employers are increasingly looking for workers who have international skills and expertise,” says Dr Allan Goodman, President of IIE.  “International experience is one of the most important components of a 21st century resume so studying abroad must be viewed as an essential component of a college degree.”

The University is among a small roster of international partners that will aid the IIE with their goal of doubling the amount of US students studying abroad by the end of the decade.

Professor Dave Taylor This new development means new exchange partnerships will be created with more students than ever before being given the opportunity to spend a term/semester studying in Huddersfield.  A new scholarship will also be created to assist with students coming to join Huddersfield’s Study Abroad Programme.

Professor David Taylor (pictured left), the University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, recognises the transformation that can happen to students who spend time studying abroad.

“The impact on employability, academic performance and personal development is a key reason for engaging with global mobility schemes,” said Professor Taylor.  “Located in the heart of historic Yorkshire, the University of Huddersfield offers a fantastic and affordable study abroad experience for students from the USA and we look forward to welcoming them to our campus.”

Over the next four years, the IIE’s Generation Study Abroad will raise awareness about the need for USA students, from all backgrounds and in all fields, to gain international experience, as well as language and cultural skills.  Collaborators will also meet up at a yearly summit to discuss best practice, with last year’s summit paper available here.

Read more news