Chromatic Monitoring For Industry And The Health Sector
Submitting InstitutionUniversity of Liverpool
Unit of AssessmentElectrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials
Summary Impact TypeTechnological
Research Subject Area(s)
Mathematical Sciences: Applied Mathematics
Information and Computing Sciences: Artificial Intelligence and Image Processing
Engineering: Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Summary of the impact
The underpinning research has led to a methodology for cost-effective
monitoring systems to interpret complex and emergent conditions in
real-world applications. There are ten different organisations utilising
the technology, benefitting the UK economy and health care provision, both
nationally and internationally. These include MAST Group Ltd, Electricity
North West Ltd, TMMHRC (India) and the Milestones Trust (Bristol). The
impacts are (i) Economic: improving business capabilities
and UK company profit margins (ii) Societal: benefiting
health sector organisations in India and in the UK through improved
diagnosis and care for the elderly and vulnerable; and (iii) Environmental:
reducing waste and carbon footprint.
Context: The underpinning research is a generic and novel
methodology called "Chromaticity" which is for monitoring complex and
emerging conditions in real world systems. Chromaticity mimics the human
sensory systems such as, colour vision, hearing, taste, smell etc. It does
this by extracting relevant information about complex and emerging
conditions, without a surfeit of data. To give a simple example, the eye
can detect very subtle differences in colour with the equivalent of only 3
spectrally overlapping detectors, whereas a man-made spectrometer may
capture 1000 separate data points (non-overlapping) but fail to
detect those subtle differences.
Research: The underpinning research in the Department established
that using 3 spectrally overlapping detectors, efficient and
cost-effective monitoring systems could be produced which outperform
traditional measurement systems in monitoring complex and emergent
conditions. The ground-breaking nature of the research is reflected by the
large number of scientific papers (> 30 since 2006) published in
high-quality scientific and engineering journals of professional
Institutions. The book [3.1] is a collation of the main points reported in
the >30 peer reviewed papers.
Further research has developed the chromaticity approach into different
physical domains — optical, acoustic, electromagnetic, space, time,
frequency etc [3.2, 3.3 and 3.4]. As a consequence impending faults in,
for example, power systems and early development of medical conditions can
be diagnosed before they become critical. This requires understanding the
fundamental principles governing the quality and trustworthiness of
information embedded in the chromatic values in these domains.
The chromaticity method was pioneered by the Centre for
Intelligent Monitoring Systems (CIMS) in the Department (http://www.cims.org.uk
) and resulted in 2 generic patent awards [3.5,3.6]. The research quality
is also indicated by the substantial research funding (>£3.0M) from
several sources (EPSRC, EU, Industry etc). There has been substantial
involvement from senior scientists internationally and prestigious awards
received (Achievement Medal IEE Science, Education and Technology
Division), Medal of Distinction (Bulgarian Academy of Science), North West
Innovation Lecture, UK).
Key Dates: The research for the applications described above, was
initiated in 1995 and evolved through more generic aspects of the
methodology, to culminate in 2000 with the exploration of deployment in
other areas in addition to optical fibre applications. These included: (i)
space- location, time-domain and behavioural monitoring associated with
assistive care for the elderly from 2000 [3.2]; (ii) acoustic monitoring
of high voltage transformer switching from 2006 [3.3]; and (iii)
monitoring of industrial liquids, namely high voltage insulating oils from
2009 onwards, petroleum fuels between 2006 and 2010 [3.4], biological
fluids, tissue and bacteria monitoring from 2006 onwards and finally the
use of intercontinental transmission of chromatic parameters (2008 -
Key researchers: Professor J. Spencer, Head, Electrical
Engineering, Electronics and Computer Science; Emeritus Professor G. R.
Jones, Honorary Senior Research Fellow; Dr. A. G. Deakin, Senior Research
Assistant; Dr. D. H. Smith, Senior Research Assistant; Dr. K. Wong, KTP
Associate (MAST), Mr A Pate, KTP Associate (Fairbanks), Dr. S Xu ( now at
References to the research
(indicative maximum of six references)
3.1. Jones, G. R., Deakin, A. G., Spencer, J. W. (Editors) (2008).
"Chromatic Monitoring of Complex Conditions". Book published by CRC Press,
Florida, USA for Institute of Physics, UK. ISBN 13:978-1-58488-988-5;
Particularly: CH 1 - 3 "Basic Principles" p. 3-47; CH 5 "Chromatic
Monitoring of Industrial Liquids" p.93-112 ; CH 8 "Chromatic Monitoring of
Biological Tissues and Fluids" p.159-189; CH 10 "Chromaticity of
Acoustical and Vibration Signals" p.213-238; CH 11 "Chromatic Monitoring
of Activity and Behaviour" p.239-265
3.2. Xu, S., Jones, G. R. (2008) "Non Intrusive Activity
Assessment of a Vulnerable Individual for Real Living Environments". Meas.
Sci. Technol. 19 045208 doi:10.1088/0957-0233/19/4/045208
3.3. Oraby, O. A., Spencer, J. W., Jones, G. R. (2009) "Monitoring
changes in the speckle field from an optical fibre exposed to low
frequency acoustical vibrations". Journal of Modern Optics, v 56, n 1, p
73-84, January 2009. doi:10.1080/09500340802450573
3.4. Jones, G. R., Deakin, A. G., Brookes, R. J., Spencer, J. W.
(2009) "A Portable Liquor Monitoring System Using a PC-Based Chromatic
Technique". Meas. Sci. Technol. 20. 075305 doi:10.1088/0957-0233/20/7/075305;
3.5. Jones, G. R., Spencer, J. W., Dodds, P. S. (Priority date
31/03/ 2004) "Non orthogonal Monitoring of Complex Systems" GB patent
3.6. Jones, G. R., Spencer, J.W., Deakin, A. G., Zhang, J.
(Priority date 31/03/ 2004) "Non- orthogonal Signal Monitoring" GB Patent
Key research grants and awards:
There has been substantial funding from several sources: (i) European
Technology Transfer Grants [ERDF] (2000-2006, £2.5M). (ii) EPSRC (2006 -
2010, £511k) Supergen V — Amperes "A sustainable energy infrastructure".
(iii) Deputy Prime Minister's Office (Assistive Care Grant (2005- 2008,
£197k)), (iv) Two KTP grants (a) Bacterial monitoring (2007-2010, £181k)
and (b) Forecourt Petroleum monitoring (2006 - 2008, £137k); (v) HV
Transformer Monitoring Industry funded (2009-2013, £300k); (vi) EPSRC —
Knowledge Exploitation Laboratory — funding to embed chromaticity in MHA
(2009 - 2010, £167k).
Details of the impact
The underpinning research within CIMS has allowed the development of a
chromatic sensing methodology allowing cost-effective monitoring systems.
The CIMS system has been used to interpret complex and emergent conditions
in several real world applications. This has led to significant
economic, societal and environmental impact
with national and large international reach.
There are currently ten different organisations utilising the technology,
benefitting the UK economy and health care provision both nationally and
internationally. The impact includes, but is not limited to, the four
specific examples given below:
1. Time domain chromaticity with optical fibre, acoustic sensing
developed at Liverpool [3.1, 3.3], has been retrofitted onto High Voltage
transformers in sub stations operated by Electricity North West Ltd (ENWL)
and Western Power (WP). CIMS engaged Manchester-based manufacturer (MHA
Lighting [5.3]) to build monitoring units. 35 units have now been produced
and installed in ENWL substations in the Midlands and the North West,
allowing early detection of incipient switching faults. This has resulted
in an important contribution to the provision of reliable electric power
supplies nationally. The resulting impact is therefore upon both industry
and society in general via reduction of the risk of widespread power
disruption. Furthermore: "Without these monitoring units
and the chromatic processing methodology, ENWL would not achieve some
of its regulatory aims and objectives in terms of the future energy
2. Space domain chromaticity with 2D digital camera imaging developed at
CIMS has been used to monitor growth of bacterial colonies in urine [3.1].
This led to the development of the MAST "UriPlus" urine monitor which was
then evaluated by 3 independent hospitals and one medical laboratory
[5.4]. Following successful field trials the UriPlus instrument was
launched in 2011. To date, there have been 25 units manufactured.
Furthermore there are 5-year consumables contracts in place with end-users
(from 2012 and ongoing). This represents a revenue income stream of £2.5
million over the 5 year period in question [5.2]. In addition to economic
benefits, the MAST UriPlus monitor provides improved diagnosis of health
threatening conditions for medical patients, through the urine screening
product because of its higher accuracy and ease of use: "...MAST
UriPlus was found to be a much improved instrument over the Matascan
Elite in ease of use, speed of use, user friendly software and
improved accuracy" [5.4]
Further research and development regarding space domain chromaticity has
also been applied for the detection of antibiotic effectiveness to treat
bacterial infections. This has been transferred from CIMS to MAST via a
KTP award. The researcher trained during in the project, as the KTP
associate, is now employed by MAST. Chromaticity is embedded in the new
MAST instrument, funded through this KTP award. The resulting performance
of the instrument is superior to previous versions [5.3] and "...reduces
waste and carbon foot print" [5.8].
3. Optical domain chromaticity [3.1] for skin tissue monitoring is being
used internationally. An inexpensive mobile phone camera-based chromatic
system is being used at the Thengana Medical Mission Hospital &
Research Centre (TMMHRC) and 3 hospitals in South India for the live
monitoring of jaundice in newly born infants (from 2010). "The scale
of the sociological importance is reflected in the fact that 9
million babies are born in India each year and neonatal
hyperbilirubinemia occurs in more than 60% of late preterm and term
newborns" [5.5]. The CIMS system allows poorer sections of the
population, in remote areas, to have access to improved diagnosis with
consequent improvement in healthcare.
4. Space- and time-domain chromaticity with optical and infra-red sensing
[3.1] has been employed for the non-intrusive assistive care of the
elderly in the UK. An assistive care system covering three
wings of a Care Home for the elderly, (Milestones Trust Bristol) has been
in operation for 10 years with continuous evaluation (2003-ongoing). A
further 8 room system was successfully tested at The Oakes, Merton Care
Home, London which won a Government e-Innovation Award.
Summary of end-user beneficiaries:
(i) Economic: Electric Power Distribution Companies (ENWL WP etc)
including their industrial customers. Instrument manufacturers (e.g. MAST
Group Ltd, MHA Lighting Ltd) [5.1,5.2, 5.3]
(ii) Societal: Healthcare sectors (NHS) with an International
reach to the impact via TMMHRC (India) [5.5]. Improvement of patient care
for elderly residents in care homes (Milestones Trust) [5.6].
(iii) Environmental: The UriPlus instrument contributed to the NHS
LEAN target performance indicators for the MAST group [5.8]
Sources to corroborate the impact
Economic and manufacturing impact:
5.1. The Research and Development Manager at Electricity North
West can corroborate impact of monitoring systems on transformer
infrastructure to improve reliability and "achieve regulatory amis
and objectives in terms of the future energy infrastructure
5.2. The Managing Director at MAST GROUP Ltd. can corroborate
revenue and industrial development impact.
5.3. The Managing Director of MHA Lighting can corroborate
industrial collaboration, training and instrument development.
Societal and healthcare impact:
5.4. MAST UriPlus System: Product
details on MAST website. Original reports are available (on request)
from MAST Group Ltd.- a) Cork University Hospital
(14/05/12)(Verification report LF-C- PAT-METHSVR) b) Leeds General
Infirmary (04/02/11) Leeds Urine Screening Results. c)
Southampton Regional Laboratory (10/08/10) d) GSTS, St.Thomas
Hospital, London, evaluation
5.5. The Managing Director, Thengana Medical Mission Hospital
& Research Centre (TMMHRC) can corroborate successful use of Bilirubin
Mobile Phone Monitor. Additional reports are also available from TMMHRC.
b) MM Hospital, CHC Hospital, Deeksha Multi-speciality Hospital, India; b)
Dr. A. Kamle (independent assessor's report).
5.6. The Facilities Co-ordinator at the Milestones Trust Care Home
can corroborate use of the Space- and time-domain chromaticity system and
impacts on care of the elderly.
5.8. The Managing Director at MAST group can also corroborate how
the work of the group have