Our Higher Education students presented their research projects to peers, external guests and academics at the annual research symposium.
After a hiatus due to the pandemic it was great to see the event return with a bang. We had representation from many of our higher education subjects delivered by students studying either foundation degrees (HNC/HND), Top-up degrees or degree apprenticeships.
There was a fantastic range of interesting discussions from subject matter including; attendance systems using facial recognition, men’s mental health, a critical investigation into the aviation industry’s response to the pandemic and the fundamentals of biochemistry.
Our HE Mechanical Engineering Lecturer, Nic Gaskell provided a fantastic key note speech to close our research symposium.
His talk ‘My Doctorate and where it Came From’ focused on his research working with Mr Richard Wain and Dr Justin Whitty (who is his supervisor) based on their arterial coupling device that they proved works with blood flow.
Nic discussed and showed how his structural simulation was significantly more effective than using stitches to join an artery together (specifically the femoral and carotid arteries).
He made (Figure 1) a model which is a small artery to simulate the right properties and used his own heart beat to act as a structural load for blood pressure.
He then measured his blood pressure on his artery (roughly distance from bottom of gut to where breast would be). This would then show a representative model of how blood flows through small arteries.
The Doppler-graph (Figure 3) measured his blood velocity which he then mapped results to his arterial model to see how the artery would respond if it was normal, coupled or stitched. The movement of the artery in each case were then compared.
Hopefully, the findings will mean within the next three years, a realistic geometry (scan) of an individual can be made to apply their blood pressure and the coupling device could potentially be recommended to a clinician as a means of a clinical diagnostic tool.
Nic joined our higher education team two years ago after lecturing at the University of Central Lancashire for two and a half years while completing his masters.
He is currently working on his PhD in the John Tyndall Institute.
To open proceedings it was also great to welcome back alumni, Dr Joe Pryle who gave his keynote address to our students, academic staff and guests.
Dr Pryle reflected on his educational journey which has seen him progress to gaining his PhD after previously completing his BA in Sports Coaching with us. He emphasised the importance of working hard and having a desire to get to where you want to be.