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Graduate Admissions

Course closed:

Sensor Technologies and Applications is no longer accepting new applications.

This course is aimed at students with backgrounds in natural sciences, technology, mathematics or medicine and a proven interest in sensing. It is structured in two phases: a one-year MRes course followed by a three-year PhD research programme. 

The MRes phase consists of a combination of taught and research modules aimed at teaching students the technical and transferable skills required to carry out original research in the area of sensing and to become future leaders in sensor technologies and applications. We expect students to become able to communicate sensor-related research across traditional subject boundaries.

During the MRes course, students are expected to

  • attend the foundation course in sensor technologies and applications (approximately 40 lectures);
  • choose four specialisation modules (typically 16 hours each);
  • attend the business and management course and practicals;
  • attend all practicals (approximately 12 practicals at two hours each); and
  • successfully conduct three extended projects:
    • guided sensor project (approximately six weeks in Michaelmas term),
    • mini research project (approximately ten weeks in Lent term) and
    • team challenge ( approximately 12 weeks in Easter term and summer vacation).

Subject to passing the MRes Sensor Technologies and Application and demonstrating the ability to conduct research at PhD level students continue to carry out an interdisciplinary PhD project in the area of sensing offered by the approximately 50 participating academic supervisors. Project supervisors will provide short project outlines. Students will select their project and develop it into a detailed PhD proposal together with their supervisor and defend it in front of a panel of academic and/or industrial members of the Sensor CDT. PhD projects will typically include at least two of the following research aspects: sensor technologies, middleware or applications.

The PhD projects will allow students to become experts in their specific fields. Continuing interdisciplinary research activities during the PhD phase, such as workshops and seminars, will foster collaboration across discipline boundaries and provide a peer network. Other opportunities during the PhD phase include entrepreneurship, outreach and industry placements.

The programme has the following aims:

  1. Produce science and engineering leaders with a high level of understanding and skills in sensor technology, in particular the fundamentals of the field, together with the necessary systems and applications knowledge, and relevant hands-on skills.
  2. Encourage an appreciation of relevant technological opportunities for sensors and their networks, and the business, road-mapping and cost-analysis tools used to determine the adoption of new technological solutions.
  3. Develop a strong business awareness in the MRes graduates for the commercialisation opportunities of sensors and related systems, and to foster an understanding of the connections between technology, management and entrepreneurship.
  4. Expose the students to a range of cognate sensor technologies and application areas, and to provide experience of a variety of different R&D cultures across the University, via a foundations lecture course, followed by more specialised lecture modules, interspersed with lab rotations, a research mini-project and a sensor team challenge for the whole cohort.
  5. Encourage students to work across scientific- and engineering-discipline boundaries, with a resultant enhancement of interdisciplinary understanding.
  6. Equip graduates of the programme with communication and outreach training, personal and development skills, as well as specific research training to enable them to be future technology leaders with excellent public engagement skills.

Learning Outcomes

The course aims to cover the full breadth of topics that encompass modern sensor research, including physical and biological concepts of sensing, sensor technologies, sensor-design principles, sensor networks, processing of sensory data, and sensor applications.

In particular, the MRes and PhD parts of the course are designed to develop the following broad themes:

  • Fundamentals of sensors and networked sensor systems, with special emphasis on sensor-fabrication, technology, electronics, and communications
  • Concepts of, strategies for, and research skills in sensor-based device fabrication, system design and characterisation
  • Hands-on research experience via University-based lab rotations, a guided sensor project, and a mini research project, together with a sensor team challenge for the whole cohort, often set in collaboration with the industrial partners
  • Aspects of business, innovation, technology development and entrepreneurship
  • Specialist know-how in the student's chosen PhD research area combined with cross-disciplinary knowledge
  • Effective communication skills across academic and industrial sensor research and development

Continuing

Normally, students would have to achieve a II.i or higher at the MRes stage to be allowed to continue to the PhD stage. Students are also required to defend their PhD project proposal in front of a panel made up of academic and/or industrial members of the Sensor CDT.

Key Information


1+3 years full-time

Doctor of Philosophy
Master of Research in the first instance

Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology

Enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 3, 2018
Application deadline
June 28, 2019
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2019

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Graduate Funding Competition
Jan. 3, 2019
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 10, 2018

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