Future research at the EDC

This page highlights future work at the EDC. For more details please contact us.


The EDC has earned its reputation by successfully working with industry on many projects. This has provided a wealth of experience that will prove useful in the future. Not to rest on its laurels the staff at the EDC keep a firm eye on the future. The world of engineering research has never been more dynamic and exciting and the EDC intends to maintain its leading edge position in these fields.

Open invitation

With this in mind the EDC extends an open invitation to potential industrial partners and sponsors as well as collaborative endeavours with other universities both in the UK, Europe and on a worldwide basis.

If you would like to work with the EDC on one of our projects or you feel that the EDC can provide you with a solution for your industry then please contact us. Our staff can present views on state of the art engineering solutions to many problems and provide you with consultation at any time.

Image of: Optimising turbine blade design

Optimising turbine blade design

Future research topics

The following research topics are generic in nature and cover many aspects of the work the EDC does. This is not an exhaustive list, but is sufficient to show the many ranges of areas within which we work now and in the future.

A sample of these include:

Design Rationale

Practical approaches to the implementation and representation of Design Rationale (DR) have involved a variety of related approaches, which include:

  • IBIS (Issue Based Information System),
  • PHI (Procedural Hierarchies of Issues), and
  • Functional representation.


Techniques for dealing with complexity

Currently the topic of complexity is poorly defined in the context of systems. A useful direction for research in this area will be to increase the overall understanding of complexity specifically in the area of complex systems.


Mechanisms for identifying property emergence

High level emergent properties are commonly referred to as "ilities". By investigating this aspect of Integrated Modelling Environments (IME) there is scope for increasing the capabilities of designers in this area.


Systems for understanding product lifecycle

The aerospace industry is made up of many disciplines which contribute to the overall design, construction and maintenance of systems, which have to be conceived, designed and implemented within the lifecycle disciplines of manufacturing and supportability. The design lifecycle covers a broad range of interests from the conceptual stage, through simulation and implementation to the operation, upgrading and eventual termination of a product.


Using information systems as legacy utilities

A view of flexibility is the degree of design freedom available during the design process. As a design progresses, flexibility decreases and design knowledge increases. One of the challenges of current approaches is to raise both these levels during this process. By retaining a high level of freedom over the lifecycle of a design, the overall system design remains more flexible. Closely linked to flexibility, upgradeability exists within the context of concurrent engineering.


Design optimisation with imperfect information

Automated design using optimisation is an increasingly popular method for achieving an acceptable design at appropriate cost. One example where the method has been applied extensively is the optimisation of the aerodynamics of turbo machinery designs.


Implementation of knowledge use and management

Work in this area involves the creation, collection, propagation and use of knowledge between distributed modelling tools working in an integrated modelling environment. The work is based on the use of knowledge based software agents that can communicate intelligently with each other without human intervention ...


Improvement strategies within the design process

It is intuitively clear that not all improvement strategies of the design process are equally cost-effective. In such a situation, game theory could be used, for example, to identify and examine the internal trade-offs for different modelling options with a view to arriving at effective improvement strategies.


Balance between integration and de-coupling

As modelling becomes more integrated it becomes increasingly possible to examine all the influences of design changes on different aspects of performance.


Contact the EDC

For further details of the EDC's activities please get in touch with us through our contact page.

Commercial Research at Newcastle University

A full list of commercially available research facilities for Newcastle University can be found on the Services for Business web pages.

Highlight for April 2008

Integrated Modelling for Strategic Planning

Strategic planning for sustainability requires complex systems to be modelled.

Because of this complexity, it is unrealistic to develop new and comprehensive models for each of the numerous possible situations likely to be encountered. Many models already exist ...

more ...

Previous highlights

About the Events Diary

Upcoming seminars

The EDC often hosts, arranges or is associated with a wide variety of seminars related to its activities.

These seminars (often in association with an engineering institute) are always open to students and staff at the university and often to the public.

Upcoming events will be listed on this website in the future. Please check back from time to time for updates.