Newcastle University's fundamental research into the automated synthesis of asynchronous
systems and metastability analysis has resulted in new technologies that have been adopted
worldwide by the microprocessor industry and educational sectors. In particular, Newcastle's
asynchronous design methods and tools based on Petri nets have been used by the industry
leading vendor Intel Corporation for their switch silicon technology, on which most transactions on
the NYSE and NASDAQ (with combined daily volume of trade exceeding £80 billion) now rely.
Oracle Corporation used the results of Newcastle's metastability analysis research for building their
SPARC series of servers, marketed as having "world's fastest microprocessor".
Research (1993-2008) on novel silicon architectures and design
methodologies for digital signal
and video processing led to the creation of world leading semiconductor IP
cores (chip designs) for
implementing the main video and image compression standards including
MPEG2, and JPEG2000. These have been licensed to semiconductor
including Panasonic, Sony, Toshiba and Sharp. Since 2008, such
encoders/decoders have been
incorporated into all DTV/HDTV SoCs produced by Conexant, NXP, Trident
Entropic. They have also been used as the hardware acceleration engines in
Intel's C2110 Media
Processor. At least 150 million chips worldwide having been manufactured
Newcastle University's fundamental research into the theory of
concurrency and the automated
construction and analysis of asynchronous systems has resulted in novel
technologies that have
been adopted and applied worldwide by industry. This case study describes
impact over the last
five years on the industrial development of asynchronous microprocessor
chips, in particular,
deployed by Intel for handling financial transactions on NYSE and NASDAQ
(with combined daily
volume of trade exceeding £80 billion), and the improvements in business
through the world-leading open-source ProM tools (downloaded over 65,000
times since 2008, and
used by a number of major organisations, e.g. ING Bank and Deloitte).
Ontologies are used to describe the meaning of terms in a domain.
Manchester has had a leading role in the design of ontology languages,
algorithms and tools. Through standardization, algorithm development and
tool creation, we have significantly influenced the uptake of the Ontology
Web Language (OWL) and Semantic Web Technologies by public service
providers and industry. For example, the NCI thesaurus and SNOMED CT are
medical terminologies in OWL; specialised semantic web companies such as
Clark & Parsia, Racer Systems and TopQuadrant provide semantic
technologies and services that build on OWL; and companies such as Oracle
and B2i Healthcare include tool support for OWL.
The University of Hull has pioneered a novel method and tool for
dependability analysis and optimisation of critical engineering systems
known as Hierarchically Performed Hazard Origin and Propagation Studies
a) HiP-HOPS (http:\\hip-hops.eu) has been successfully commercialised in
conjunction with software houses ITI GmbH (Germany) and ALL4TEC (France).
Over 30 licences for the tool have been sold since 2011 with total income
for all partners estimated at £300,000.
b) The method and tool have been taken up by large organisations
including Volvo, Toyota, Honda, Fiat, Continental, Germanischer Lloyd,
Embraer and Honeywell.
c) HiP-HOPS has contributed to the specification of EAST-ADL, an emerging
design language developed as an automotive industry standard, confirming
industrial reach and acceptability.
d) The Dependable Systems research group is pursuing impact on the new
automotive safety standard ISO-262626 and have contributed to setting up
the new IFAC DCDS workshop a key forum for disseminating research on
dependability to industry.
In 1997 ERPE invented a novel automatic machining feature recognition
technology which has been incorporated into the Pathtrace EdgeCAM Solid
Machinist Computer Aided Manufacture (CAM) package, now owned by Planit
plc. EdgeCAM is considered as one of the leading independent solid
machinist CAM package, with 10 - 15% of the world market. Related ERPE
feature recognition in shape representation and characterisation has
enabled the design of a 3D shape browser for product data management
systems. Commercialised in 2005 as ShapeSpace with £0.7M current market
value, for application to the parts industry in automotive markets, it has
attracted the US Actify Inc., as an equity sharing partner to aid
ShapeSpace to access worldwide markets.
The GRANIT system is a non-destructive technique for assessing the
condition of rock bolts and
ground anchors used to support structures such as tunnels. It applies a
small impulse to the bolt
and interprets the resulting vibration response to provide estimates of
load and unbonded length.
Initial development of the system was based on the findings of EPSRC
projects in tunnels
undertaken by the Universities of Aberdeen and Bradford from 1989-1997,
resulting in an
empirically based method. However, research undertaken at the University
of Aberdeen since
1998 has provided the understanding of the process and developed the
science needed to underpin the development of a full commercial system.
The GRANIT system is
patented, and has been subject to worldwide licence to Halcrow who have
undertaken testing and
provided a method of ensuring the safety of mines, tunnels and similar
received the NCE award for Technical Innovation Award for GRANIT in
December 2010. The
impact of the research has been in part economic, but largely on
practitioners and professional
The application of advanced control algorithms has generated an impact on
the economy and the environment through increased precision and reduced
cost of operation of fast mechanical systems. A reduction in fuel
consumption and CO2 emissions has been achieved in the transportation
industry by the implementation of novel advanced control algorithms for
advanced cruise control systems.
Water distribution systems (WDS) are highly complex, spatially
distributed networks comprising thousands of different components which
deliver drinking water to customers. The impact described here has been
achieved in areas of energy management, pressure control and burst
detection in WDS. Some developed solutions, such as the model reduction
method, model of pump stations and pressure control algorithms, have been
widely accepted by the water research community and then filter down to
industrial applications or implemented in a widely available shareware.
Direct economical and environmental impacts have been achieved by projects
for the UK companies with measurable benefits in pounds through reducing
water losses and energy consumption as described in Section 4. These
include South Staffordshire Water, Aquavent and Scottish Water in the
pressure control area and Affinity Water (former Veolia) in the energy
management and burst detection areas.
Optimisation tools developed in the UoA have significantly advanced the
ability to find the best designs for complex systems in cases where these
were previously unobtainable. These optimisation tools have been
implemented in several companies to shorten design times, reduce costs and
reduce CO2 emissions. This has brought about new multi-million
pound revenues, long-term contracts, increased employment and contribution
to sustainability targets.