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Bioplastic film boosts circular bioeconomy

Design innovation in the food supply chain benefits agricultural and horticultural industries

The need

Oil-derived plastics are ubiquitous in the environment, with agricultural plastics significantly contributing to environmental problems. There is a need to move towards sustainable development that is shaped by consumer expectations and the worldview of farmers.

AgriFlex, committed to supporting innovation in the food supply chain, within the context of a circular bioeconomy, set out to work with Brunel experts and produce an agri-food by-product derived biodegradable bioplastic film for the agricultural and horticultural industries. The film needed to suppress weed and conserve water in crop production, be designed for easy storage, able to be quickly loaded onto existing farming machinery, leading to effective ease-of-use.

The solution

The scope of activities included:

  • evaluation of stakeholder behaviour with respect to current agricultural mulch films;
  • assessing techno-commercial assumptions around the innovation design, usability and deployment regarding operational and usability aspects
  • developing/modifying bioplastic-film prototypes to include HCD inputs, agreed parameters, use cases in simulated farming environments
  • establishing key design specifications and human-centred features to encourage uptake of novel flexible-bioplastics for widespread adoption; and
  • evaluation of requisite performance characteristics including physical, mechanical, durability, shelf-life, end-of-life treatment.
  • formalization of a business plan for further commercialisation and potential scalability including partnerships

The outcome

  • Human Centred Design Requirements that documented product usage, usability and end-of-life treatment of the bio-films.
  • Evaluation of the film performance and characteristics.
  • Mechanical testing through physical and thermal tests on the films to evaluate the effects of processing.
  • A value chain analysis report that identified potential routes to market with commercial partners and stakeholder feedback.
  • The creation of a long-term vision in the form of a roadmap for product development.
AgriFoodX Limited were very happy with the collaboration with Brunel University. The project was delivered successfully leading to further innovation by the company. The HCD process as delivered by Brunel University was invaluable for further work in the design process and further innovative developments in the bio-plastics challenge to progress away from oil-derived plastic materials. We look forward to working with Brunel University on further developments.

Dr. Catherine S. Birch, Director AgriFoodX Limited

Get in touch with the project team member(s) for this case study

Dr Eujin Pei Dr Eujin Pei
Email Dr Eujin Pei Associate Dean (Quality Assurance) / Reader
Academic Background Eujin is Associate Dean of the College of Engineering, Design and Physical Sciences (ADQA-CEDPS), working closely with colleagues to actively monitor and implement quality and standards in relation to academic programmes across the college and providing strategic leadership and management to the faculty. He is the Director for the BSc Product Design Engineering Programme, a Chartered Engineer (CEng), Chartered Environmentalist (CENv) and Chartered Technological Product Designer (CTPD). As a Product Design Engineer during the early days of his career, he developed solutions for companies including Motorola, Inc., LM Ericsson, Sennheiser GmbH & Co. KG, and Rentokil Initial. Eujin is a Reader in Additive Manufacturing. His research focuses on Additive Manufacturing and 4D Printing. He is the Chairperson for the UK National Standards Committee for Additive Manufacturing - British Standards Institute AMT/8; and UK Head of Delegate for ISO/TC261. He is the Convenor of the International Organisation for Standardisation ISO/TC261/WG4 that develops global Standards for Additive Manufacturing Data and Design; and Convenor of ISO/TC261/JG67 for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing. Eujin is a Full Member of the EPSRC Peer Review College as the national agency that assesses proposals for funding Research in Engineering and Physical Sciences. He is a Member of the EPSRC Engineering Prioritisation Panel, and Member of the EPSRC Engineering Fellowship Panel. In 2018, he became a Member of the EPSRC Early Career Forum in Manufacturing Research that involves participating in EPSRC strategic advisory activities. Eujin is the Editor-in-Chief for the Progress in Additive Manufacturing Journal (SpringerNature), Associate Editor for Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing (Springer) and Associate Editor for Assembly Automation Journal (Emerald). He is an Editorial Board Member for Rapid Prototyping Journal (Emerald), and Member of the Editorial Board for International Journal of Rapid Manufacturing (Inderscience). He is a reviewer for Cogent Engineering (Taylor & Francis); Journal of Manufacturing Processes (Elsevier); Manufacturing Letters Journal (Elsevier); Optics and Lasers in Engineering (Elsevier); Materials & Design (Elsevier); Nature Communications (Nature Publishing Group); International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management (Inderscience); Advances in Mechanical Engineering Journal (Sage Publishers); Journal of Engineering Manufacture (Sage Publishers); Journal of Mechanical Design (American Society of Mechanical Engineers, ASME); Recent Patents on Engineering (Bentham Publishers) and the International Journal of Design (Open Access). He is also reviews for Palgrave Books (Macmillan Publishers Ltd.), Laurence King Publishing Ltd. and SpringerNature AG. Research Eujin leads the Additive Manufacturing & 4D Printing Research Group with his interest focusing on Additive Manufacturing and Smart Materials. He is also the Co-Director for the Brunel Centre for Digital Manufacturing. He gained hands-on experience as a Research Fellow at Loughborough University, Brunel University London and at the University of Southampton. He was a Visiting Scientist at Vaal University of Technology and at Central University of Technology in South Africa. His active involvement in professional Memberships enable him to be a step ahead in policies and emerging technologies. He is an active Member of the British Standards Institution TDW4/8 that develops Standards such as BS 8887 for Design for MADE; and BS 8888 for Technical Product Specification. He is a Member of ISO/JTC1/WG12 which develops standardization work for 3D Scanning and 3D Printing within the scope of Information Communication Technology. Eujin also regularly participates in ISO/TC 261/AHG 05; ISO/TC 261/AHG 06; ISO/TC 261/JG 74; and is a Member of ISO/TC 261/CAG Chairman's Advisory Group, and ISO/TC 261/JAG ISO/TC 261 - ASTM F42 Steering group on JG activities. As Convenor for ISO/TC 261/WG4, he oversees the work of ISO/TC 261 - ASTM F42 joint groups including ISO/TC 261/JG 54 Joint ISO/TC 261-ASTM F42 Group for Fundamentals of Design; ISO/TC 261/JG 57 Joint ISO/TC 261-ASTM F42 Group for Specific Design Guidelines on Powder Bed Fusion; ISO/TC 261/JG 64 Joint ISO/TC 261-ASTM F42 Group for Solid Modelling Support; ISO/TC 261/JG 70 Joint ISO/TC 261-ASTM F42 Group for Optimized Medical Image Data; and ISO/TC 261/JG 73 for Joint ISO/TC 261-ASTM F42 Group for Digital Product Definition and Data Management. Eujin is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering Designers (FIED). He is a member of the Engineering Council Registration Standards Committee (RSC) that publishes procedures, routes and requirements for the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC) for registration as Engineering Technician (EngTech), Incorporated Engineer (IEng) or Chartered Engineer (CEng) and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). He is a Member of the Design Research Society (DRS) and Co-Founder of the Inclusive Design Special Interest Group. At Brunel University London, Eujin is a Committee Member for the Innovation Hub which spearheads new initiatives for student entrepreneurs. He has a track record of generating new knowledge and finding solutions for significant impact in the industry. He is active in Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) and worked with BAE Systems Applied Intelligence Ltd. on several industry projects. In 2016, he was nominated for the BAE Systems Chairman’s Award that acknowledged the efforts and achievements of company partners who delivered performance and furthered the company’s values. Through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, he has collaborated with SMEs, such as L'Earth Ltd. to conceptualise, develop and retail new 3D Printing bio-materials, in which the product and packaging were recognised with an International WorldStar Award in 2014 for Design excellence. He continues to advise SMEs including Quinteassential Ltd. and Watson EP Ltd. for New Product Development projects. Between 2013-2014, he collaborated and delivered projects for the Leicester Arts and Museum Service where important historical artefacts from the Anglo-Saxon and Roman period were completely digitised and faithfully reproduced using 3D Printing. He worked with the Leicester Transport Heritage Trust to undertake projects such as to completely reverse engineer a historically important Tramcar that was accurately scaled down and 3D Printed. In 2015, he was invited to lead a Masterclass at the Royal College of Art (RCA) for the Include2015 conference on the use of 3D Printing that could support Design practice. Professional Design Career As a Product Design Engineer, Eujin holds numerous Design awards, including the Wearable Master and Field Trial Winner for the Manchester Numbers That Matter Hackathon (2014), International WorldStar Packaging Award (2014), IDSA IDEA Award (2011), Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design 24 hour Inclusive Design Challenge (2011), Motorola Motofwrd (2006), Opus Eyewear (2006), UK Lighting Competition (2006), RSA Design Directions (2005), Popular Science / Core 77 Security Design Competition (2004) and the President's Furniture award (2003). His work has been published in leading international magazines such as Dwell, Icon, FX International and in national newspapers. He has also been interviewed on BBC Radio Leicester and on Power 98FM. Eujin was invited as a judge for the British Promotional Merchandise Association Design competition in 2010. He has exhibited at an international level, including MagicChef at the Panasonic Centre in Tokyo, Japan (2003); and the Clamplight at the NEC Lighting Show in Birmingham, UK (2007). In 2018, his Soundsphere project was exhibited at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum which is the only museum in the USA devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary Product Design. Eujin’s research centres on Additive Manufacturing, 4D Printing and Functionally Graded Materials, and serves as the Additive Manufacturing & 4D Printing Research Group Leader. In 2021, he was appointed Co-Director, Brunel Centre for Digital Manufacturing; and in 2023, appointed as Co-Director, Brunel Design Research Centre where he holds both concurrent positions. He is the Chairperson for the British Standards Institute AMT/8 Committee for Additive Manufacturing; and UK Head of Delegate for ISO/TC261. He has been the Convenor of the International Organisation for Standardisation ISO/TC261/WG4 working group since 2015, working with stakeholders to develop and publish global Standards for Additive Manufacturing Data and Design; and served as Convenor of ISO/TC261/JG67 for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing (2016-2020) responsible for the publication of ISO/ASTM TR 52912:2020. Upon completion of his PhD, he worked with Professor RI Campbell as a Postdoctoral Researcher to investigate aspects of Material Extrusion for Additive Manufacturing. Subsequently, he worked in South Africa under the supervision of Professor Deon de Beer to develop novel Test Artefacts for Additive Manufacturing. He also collaborated with Professor Mario Monzon to further develop his expertise in 4D Printing. He is also interested in aspects of Reverse Engineering, Topology Optimisation and Augmented Reality. Within the Department, Eujin is an active Member of the Design for Sustainable Manufacturing (DSM) theme and co-organises Research seminars. As a means to disseminate new knowledge, Eujin publishes in international peer-reviewed journals, conference papers, periodicals and books. In 2019, he published a book titled "Additive Manufacturing - Developments in Training and Education - Best Practices, Challenges and Opportunities” (ISBN: 978-3-319-76083-4) by Springer Nature; and contributed to a book chapter for "Additive Manufacturing: Applications and Innovations" by Taylor & Francis in 2018. In 2022, he was awarded by the American Society for Testing and Materials for the 2021 ASTM Additive Manufacturing Award of Excellence in Education. External sources of funding for Eujin's academic research have been received from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC); the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC); the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC); the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE); Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE); the British Council; and from the European Commission. He was a Co-Investigator for the European Commission's H2020 Erasmus+ Capacity-building in the Field of Higher Education programme for “LeNSin - International Learning Network on Sustainability” which was completed in 2019. In 2018, he received funding as Work Package Leader for the European Commission's H2020 WIDESPREAD-05-2017 programme for "Increasing Excellence on Advanced Additive Manufacturing” (INEX-ADAM). In 2019, he also received funding as Work Package Leader for the European Commission's H2020 Erasmus+ Sector Skills Alliances programme for “Strategy in Additive Manufacturing” (SAM). In the same year, he received a grant from the EPSRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) Engagement award. In 2020, he received a grant from the British Council Newton Institutional Links fund for “Direct Writing of Cementitious Inks to Scaffolds with Complex Microarchitectures (DIWoCIS)” as a Co-Investigator, as well as two additional grants from the Global Challenges Research Fund, Demonstrate Impact Programme. In 2021, he was funded by the European Commission's H2020 Erasmus+ Key Action 2: Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices programme for Develop Engaging Massive Open Online Resources for Designers Innovative Education (DEMO). Eujin is also involved in the department's Co-Innovate programme which is an innovation support scheme for London-based SMEs and start-ups to help entrepreneurs achieve business growth through collaboration with the university's academics, supported by the European Regional Development Fund. Proven Track Record of Funded Research Projects (Ongoing - 2023) European Union Partnership for Excellence - Centres of Vocational Excellence grant: "Centres of Vocational Excellence in Aerospace & Defence for Advanced Manufacturing" - AILEEN (until 2027) European Union Erasmus+ Key Action 2 Programme grant: "Developing SustaINable Skills for DesiGners in Additive Manufacturing" - SING FOR GREEN (until 2025) European Union Horizon Europe grant: "Multi material additive manufacturing for lightweight and thermal management" - MULTHEM (until 2025) InnovateUK, Design Foundations Round 2: Net Zero Environments grant - Rethinking Phyona (until 2024) European Union Horizon Europe grant: "Boosting the Exploitation of Standardisation Inputs from European Projects" - STAND4EU (until 2024) European Union Erasmus+ grant: "Learning by Sharing Knowledge in Design for Additive Manufacturing" - ShakeAM (until 2024) Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) SSH Connections grant: "Pedagogic best practice for technology-driven design futures" - Design 4.0 (until 2023) European Union Erasmus+ grant: "Sector Skills Alliances in Additive Manufacturing" - SAM (until 2023) Successfully Completed Research Projects & Grants European Union Erasmus+ Key Action 2 Programme grant: "Develop Engaging Massive Open Online Resources for Designers Innovative Education" - DEMO (until 2022) European Union Horizon 2020 H2020-WIDESPREAD-05-2017-Twinning Programme grant: "Increasing Excellence on Advanced Additive Manufacturing" - INEX-ADAM (until 2022) Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and KTN - "Design Exchange Partnership" (DEP) grant (until 2022) British Council Newton Institutional Links Programme grant: "Direct Writing of Cementitious Inks to Scaffolds with Complex Micro Architectures" - DiWoCiS (until 2022) InnovateUK, Designing Sustainable Plastic Solutions grant - AgriFlex (until 2021) InnovateUK, Sustainable Innovation Fund Round 3 grant - MediFlex (until 2021) UKRI Global Challenges Research Fund, Demonstrate Impact Programme grant - AquaSense (until 2021) UKRI Global Challenges Research Fund, Demonstrate Impact Programme grant - BioSan (until 2021) Harrow Council Innovation Grant (until 2021) EPSRC Impact Acceleration Grant (until 2020) (full list of completed projects available upon request) Opportunities for PhD Study Enquiries are very welcome from those who are keen to pursue PhD and MSc degrees regarding Additive Manufacturing and Design. Joint supervision, industry partnerships and collaborative research opportunities are all very welcomed. PhD Research Supervision as First Supervisor Jessie Lei: 4D Printed Textiles and Applications in Fashion Design Jinghao Bai: Human Centred Design and User Interface tools for 4D Printing Christopher Biggadike: Leading Engineers in the 21st Century Using Complexity Leadership Theory Aymane Sahli: AI assisted Project Management: Predicting Patterns and Behaviours in Complex Projects Faten Ezrin Azhar: Improving Communication between Product Designers and Manufacturing Engineers when Designing 4D Printed Parts Peter Booth: 4D printing of Intelligent Bio-Materials with Self-sustaining Structure Harry Sutcliffe: Developing a Design for 4D Printing (Df4DP) Framework Alex Marler: Exploring the use of Fused Deposition Modelling for 4D Printing Seok Woo Nam: Programming 4D Printed Parts with Computer-Aided-Design Giselle Loh: 4D Printed Textiles and Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing (completed 2022) James Burchill: Improving Dissemination of Radical Innovations in Material Science (completed 2020) Lulu Yin: Understanding the relationship between the environment and walking behaviour (completed 2019) Thomas Stead: Product Development of Self-Use Medical Devices (completed 2017) Jerry Tagang: Designing a framwork for footware solutions for diabetic patients (completed 2014) PhD Research Supervision as Second Supervisor Montida Lertnimanoradee: Upcycling of Materials in Thailand Zakaria Monteiro Najmi: Applications for Artificial Intelligence Edvard Schroeder: Developing Passive Flow Control Techniques for Quiet Wind Turbine Blades Aine Petrulaityte: Investigating Product-Service Systems and Distributed Manufacturing (completed 2019) Milad Areir: 3D Printed Active Carbon Electrode for Electric Double-Layer Capacitors (completed 2018) Mazin Al-Wswasi: Algorithmn-based Computer Aided Design for Digital Manufacturing (Research Development Advisor) Invited Visiting Academics and Postdoctoral Research Associates Dr Bahareh Shahri (Visiting Senior Lecturer, 2023) Dr Benjamin Watson (Visiting Professor, 2023) Dr James Self (Visiting Reader, 2023) Dr A. Uddin (Postdoctoral Researcher, ongoing - 2023) Mr J. Gooneratne (Research Assistant, ongoing - 2023) Mr S. Kumar (Research Assistant, ongoing - 2023) Dr M. Osmani (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2022) Dr S. Nammi (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2022) Dr S. Srinivasan (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2022) Dr Shahriar Bakrani Balani: (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2021) Dr Israt Kabir: (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2021) Dr Adeayo Sotayo: (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2020) Ms Daniela Ribeiro: FAPESP funded programme (Visiting Researcher, 2019) Dr Malte Ressin: EPSRC funded programme (Postdoctoral Researcher, 2017) Overseas Postgraduate Supervision Muhammad Kazimi bin Muhamad: Universiti Teknikal Melaka, Malaysia Nsengimana Joseph: Central University of Technology, South Africa Eujin plays a central role in Brunel Design as the Programme Director for BSc Product Design Engineering. He teaches second year undergraduates as Module Leader for Design Process Two and supports other subjects across the curriculum. Eujin believes in "Learning by Doing" that is achieved through practice and learning from experience. To establish this, industry projects are embedded in the curriculum to create a real-world learning experience for his students. Eujin worked as a Senior Lecturer in Product and Furniture Design at De Montfort University from 2010-2014 and played a key role in the re-accreditation of the BSc Product Design programme for the Institution of Engineering Designers, and was also the Subject Champion for the MA Design Programme. As a testament of his teaching excellence, he was nominated for the Vice-Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award in 2014, and nominated for the Lecturer of the Year Award in 2019. In 2019, Eujin was recognised as the PhD Research Supervisor of the Year in Brunel University London. Eujin was the Director of Postgraduate Research at Brunel Design (2018-2021), where he worked to ensure that the quality and standards of the educational provision offered by the Department for PhD students are met. He was appointed as External Examiner for the University of East London's BSc Product Design Programme in 2017; as External Examiner for Cranfield University's MSc in Metal Additive Manufacturing Programme in 2019; and as External Examiner for Buckinghamshire New University 2021. He has examined postgraduate and doctoral work for Cranfield University's Centre for Competitive Creative Design (C4D) (UK), Cardiff Metropolitan University (UK), Aalto University (Finland), Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Arts et Métiers (ENSAM) (France), Vaal University of Technology (South Africa), Universiti Teknikal Melaka (Malaysia); as well as an internal PhD Examiner at Brunel University London. In 2018, Eujin was appointed as a Visiting Erskine Fellow at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand, working with Professor Conan Fee to establish Design subjects within the newly formed School of Product Design. Opportunities for Industry Projects Eujin’s industry collaborations include local and international companies such as Dyson, Bosch, Mothercare, Canon, BAE Systems, A-Studio, Deliveroo, Flair, Xicato, Heatrae Sadia, Plumen, Frog Bikes, pladis Global, Lightly Technologies, Bubblegum Stuff, Salter, Kebony, Glen Dimplex, STG Aerospace and TP24. Other partnerships include the British Standards Institution (BSI), the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) and the Lighting Education Trust (LET). Enquiries are very welcome from companies and organisations who are keen to pursue collaborative partnerships for Level Two or Final Year projects. These projects support a richer learning environment for students and enable companies to develop new solutions for their products and services. As Module Leader for Design Process Two, Eujin has developed a range of exciting and original industry briefs, working closely with clients and mentoring students to deliver innovative and commercially-viable design solutions. Recent examples of students' work that have been mass produced and commercialised include: Sophie Skinner's (Level 2) concept from the Industry Project with Flair Leisure Products Ltd. that was put into full production in 2017; Oliver Lambert's (Level 2) concept from Project Zero with Bubblegum Stuff Ltd. was put into full production in 2018. Katie Price and Valentina Demarchi (Level 2) in collaboration with Xicato Ltd. have had their Lighting projects exhibited at "Light + Building" which is the world’s leading trade fair for lighting and building services technology in Frankfurt (2018). Jennifer Wong's (Level 3) final year project was recognised with the top prize in the Heatrae Sadia Design Award (2017). More recently, Anil Puri's final year project, Pet Calm received funding to be developed as a commercial product. Selection of Final Year Major Projects - Supervised by Eujin Pei (As First Supervisor) Above: Markella Viagkini developed an infusion pump that utilised a 4D Printed valve to control the speed and amount of liquid flowing through the tube. A fully working proof-of-principle prototype was developed from scratch, using Arduino and heating elements attached to the internal clamp. Investigations include use of Finite Element Analysis and understanding the behaviour of cell structures on how the clamping mechanism would work. Markella graduated in 2023. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Kripa Gurung developed a pocket device that could aid patients to measure, carry and dispense liquid oral medication. Features include a transparent lid, a child-safety lock and a modularised and removable measurement container. Kripa graduated in 2022. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Samantha Supan developed several final aesthetic models and proof of principle (PPP) working prototypes to describe the use of “ChatterLearn” as a voice-enabled smart speaker that uses conversational AI and gamification quizzes to help students share their knowledge and collaborate in secondary school classrooms. Sam graduated in 2022. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Max Hill developed a bicycle frame jig for the hobbyist framebuilder where different geometry choices or tubing profiles can be accommodated. The fully working mechanical prototype was built from scratch. Max graduated in 2021. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: William Hardy developed a toolchanging 3D printer that utilised electromagnets, developing the hardware and software. The toolchanger is able to accommodate up to five different heads with an integrated wipe-tower to ensure clean prints. Effort was made towards the toolhead and extruder interface with an electromagnetic mating plate. In the final presentation, he was able to demonstrate the printing of two different materials in a single process. The fully working mechanical prototype was built from scratch. Olivier graduated in 2021. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Pak Shing Lin developed a compact benchtop injection moulding machine that was designed to utilise 3D printed plastic waste material. Feasibility testing was carried out through accurately scaled down 3D Printed models produced using Vat Photopolymerization (SLA) where mechanical studies with use of Finite Element Analysis could be performed to better understand the structural behaviour, stress, displacement and strain. Ergonomic studies through rapid upper limb assessments were also carried out. Pak Shing graduated in 2021. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Jesslin Ho developed a deployable wastewater treatment unit, in collaboration with a localcompany based in the UK, utilising Electro-Methanogenic (EM) technology to process and convert wastewater into energy and nutrients. The use of wires and sprockets with pulleys would allow full scalability of the set up. Design for Assembly and Manufacture was utilised to reduce the overall number of components. Jesslin graduated in 2020. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Ajharul Choudhury developed a portable air quality monitoring device that utilises two arduino based sensors that continuously monitors three airborne pollutants - volatile chemicals (VOC), carbon monoxide (CO) and particulate matter (PM). The system creates an overall rating out of 100 for the quality of air which is displayed in the LED colour rating from turquoise to red, as well as the specific air quality on the digital display. The system can also monitor specific pollutants and has been programmed to update every 20 seconds. The fully working electronic prototype was built from scratch. Ajharul graduated in 2019. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Thomas Mortimer developed a gesture input device using a system of Time of Flight (TOF) sensors that could create a gesture area of 1.2 by 0.5m. This input device was designed to be compatible with existing electronics in the home such as lighting systems. The fully working electronic prototype including a custom designed circuit board and optimizing the plastic enclosure using CAD and FEA was conducted. Tom graduated in 2019. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Olivier Verbiest designed and built a fully working heart rate sensor connected to a novel 'sand-scape pattern' former that was controlled using magnets. The idea was to represent a user's bio-date and if the vitals are at a normal level, the circular path 'drawn' on sand would be smooth. The fully working mechanical prototype was built from scratch. Olivier graduated in 2019. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Jinghua Li experimented with the use of the shape memory effect of 4D printed parts to design a self-locking wing system in which a single printed part can perform transformations without the need for actuators and linkages. This allows weight and space to be saved, thereby simplifying the overall structure of the drone. The fully working mechanical prototype was built from scratch. This project was undertaken in collaboration with BAE Systems Applied Intelligence. Jinghua graduated in 2018. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Alex Francis developed a novel security key system as a tamper-proof seal. The fully working mechanical prototype was built from scratch. Central to this project was the use of specially treated 4D Printed material in which a specific temperature would be required to disengage the lock. The use of 3D Printing could allow for an infinite number of shapes to be randomly generated so that no single key would be exact. This project was undertaken in collaboration with BAE Systems Applied Intelligence. Alex graduated in 2017. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Suzanne Robinson collaborated with Plum Products to redesign an outdoor swing seat that could be adapted to the physical growth of children as well as to add value with an engaging toy. The emphasis for this project was human factors and child safety. A well designed fastening system allowed accessories such as the T-bar and a back-rest to be added or removed on demand. Suzanne graduated in 2017. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Emilios Farrington-Arnas developed a navigation tool for the visually impaired to assist users through the use of a tactile/haptic response rather than sound. The fully working electronic prototype was built from scratch. The discretion of the product was achieved by miniaturising the electronics into wearable products to improve styling and avoid social stigmatisation. Plenty of empathy testing and the use of simulation glasses, as well as several iterations of electronics testing using ultrasonic sensors was developed for this project. Emilios' work is on display at the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York, USA. He graduated in 2017. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Jack Biltcliffe's Major Project was to build a 3D Printer fully capable of forming objects using Portland Stone material. The fully working electro-mechanical prototype was built from scratch. Time was spent to understand the material rheology and to develop the mechatronics of the system. This was a collaborative project with the Portland Stone Quarry and A-Studio. Jack graduated in 2016. First supervisor: Eujin Pei Above: Rebecca Churn's major project was a collaboration with Wow! Stuff to design and build a toy hydrogen rocket. The fully working electronic prototype was built from scratch. Rebecca spent time with the chemistry lab to understand the electrolysis of water and to separate the gas mixture safely to propel the rocket. An understanding of electronics was critical for the design of a tipover switch and the use of dual Monostable Multivibrators as a timer for the electrolysis process and to activate the launch countdown. Rebecca graduated in 2016. First supervisor: Eujin Pei All work and photos displayed on this page are copyright of respective students © 2023.

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Case study last modified 14/10/2022

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