Biomimetics and Biomimicry in Engineering

ASME Conference on Smart Materials

In Publications, Seminars and Keynotes on 2019/04/03 at 3:29 pm

We traveled to the United States to present the results from our study on the manufacture of composites aided by external fields (i.e. magnetic) at the Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems (SMASIS 2018), organised by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) in San Antonio, Texas, in September 10-12, 2018.


The paper ‘Magnetic-assisted Alignment of Reinforcing Functionalized-fibers in a Composite for Lightweight Structures‘ can now be found in volume 1 of the proceedings: Development and Characterization of Multifunctional Materials; Modeling, Simulation, and Control of Adaptive Systems; Integrated System Design and Implementation.

In this work we exploit the use of a weak and safe magnetic field to control the location and orientation of functionalized carbon fiber within a polymeric structural (polyurethane) foam. In this way reinforced composites, typically used as components in the automotive industry and whose bespoke reinforcement conforms to the specifications from a previous design stage for structure and performance optimization, can be manufactured and deployed within the vehicle chassis system.

The results from this study pave the way for the facile, scalable and cost-effective manufacturing of engineered fiber-reinforced composites within applications that span many industrial sectors.

The paper can be found in the Digital Collection or using doi: 10.1115/SMASIS2018-7911



Intelligent Manufacture of Functionally Graded Materials

In Knowledge Transfer, Seminars and Keynotes on 2019/03/27 at 3:55 pm

Simon Backwell is working in our lab on a system that instruments and controls the manufacture of a multifunctional material with a controlled porosity. Because there is no commercially available hardware, he is looking into building a fit-for-purpose apparatus that will allow the monitoring and control of the process. He is also developing the s/ware that will allow this realisation.

He presented his work to the researchers in the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Embedded Intelligence during their ‘Orientation Day’


His work sees immediate applications in industry and the main beneficiaries are manufacturing practitioners, as well as researchers investigating materials properties when the manufacturing process is affected by external fields.

He is sponsored by EPSRC CDT-EI and co-sponsored by FAR Ltd, an innovate materials company operating in the automotive ecosystem.

Adhesion studies of metal-on-metal systems

In Info, Seminars and Keynotes on 2019/03/12 at 3:09 pm

Mohammad N Alqahtani, a researcher in our group, presented at the International Conference on Biomaterials a paper titled ‘The Adhesion of Palladium Coating on Titanium Substrates used for Medical Applications’. This work follows on his research in multifunctional porous materials.

His presentation won an award and the committee commended his work as a “phenomenal and worthy presentation”. The award was presented by Dr W. Jon. P. Barnes, from the University of Glasgow (Scotland), a pioneering bio-mimicist and biologist, well known for his research on new smart adhesives inspired by tree frogs.


Mohammad being presented the award by Dr Jon P. Barnes

The International Conference on Biomaterials took place in London in August 16-18 2018

Mohammad Nasser Alqahtani is kindly funded by the Royal commission for Jubail and Yanbu, through the Cultural Bureau of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in London.