Research

Research Groups

The Department is research focused, producing high-quality work at an international level. The major research groups are large and in all cases cover topics from pure theory through to practical applications: the advantages of these broad-based groups, in particular the way in which theory is always informed by practice and practice by theory, are impossible to overestimate. Groups are typically based around funded projects but boundaries are flexible and there is a lively interaction between all areas.

Embedded and Intelligent Systems Research Group

Research in the Embedded and Intelligent Systems (EIS) group focuses on technologies for Embedded Systems and System-on-Chips (SoC). We're also working in the area of computer architectures and AI and have a significant research activity in distributed sensor network architectures. More information.

Extended Particle Swarms (XPS)

There is a pressing need in science and industry for novel computational methods that can solve difficult problems efficiently and reliably. Such computational methods often come from the study of natural systems. For example, observations of flocks of birds and shoals of fish have inspired algorithms called particle swarms, which operate as follows: A number of simple entities - the particles - are placed in the space of possible solutions to some problem, and each evaluates the quality of the solution at its current location. Each particle then determines its movement through the solution space by combining some aspect of its own history with those of other members of the swarm. In this way the swarm as a whole, like a flock of birds collectively foraging for food, explores the solution space and eventually finds the best solution to the problem. The aim of this multidisciplinary research project is to systematically explore the extension of particle swarms by including strategies from a wide range of collective behaviours in biology, by extending the physics of the particles, by generating an extensive set of engineering problems and a flexible simulation engine, and by providing a solid theoretical and mathematical basis for the understanding and problem-specific design of new particle swarm algorithms.   More information

CSOCF LogoConstraint Satisfaction and Optimisation + Computational Finance

Many applications such as industrial scheduling and supply chain management involve constraints which must be satisfied. However, some solutions are better than others. This group investigates efficient ways to find satisfactory and/or optimal solutions.  In our group, constraint satisfaction is applied to computational finance and bargaining research. More information

Dependable Systems logoDependable Systems

This involves the study of fundamental issues in computer science. The aim is to improve productivity in software engineering and make software more reliable. Areas covered include real-time and safety critical systems, specification languages, logics theories of refinement and program development, applications of theorem proving, software development methodologies and software design theory. More information

[top of page]

IIEG Logo Essex Robotics

This is now the largest group of its kind in the UK. Research in this group covers a wide range of topics, including co-operative robotics, football-playing robots, Multisensor-based navigation and map-building, adaptive robots, intelligent agricultural vehicles, computer vision, networked robots and control systems for autonomous vehicles, analysis of robot behaviour, biologically inspired robotics and precise robot simulation.   More information

BCI logoBrain-Computer Interfaces

Drawing on the previous experience of several faculty members, we recently started a group in human computer interfaces with an emphasis on brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) and myoelectric control. BCIs can be used for capturing brain signals and translating them into commands that allow humans to control just by thinking - devices such as computers, robots, rehabilitation technology, and virtual reality environments. The same devices can be controlled by myoelectric signals as well, i.e., signals that indicate the level of electrical activity in muscles. Our aim is to expand the current limits of these two technologies while still using non invasive means. More information

IIEG LogoIntelligent Inhabited Environments

This research area explores the science and application opportunities arising from the increasing proliferation of small, networked computers and artificial intelligence in our everyday lives - our homes, work-places, clothing and accessories. More information

[top of page]

MLIA LogoMachine Learning and Intelligent Agents

Research in this group involves finding useful information from large data sets or noisy images. Applications include speech recognition, face recognition, decision support, analysis of human or animal walking and financial applications. More information

Natural and Evolutionary Computation (NEC)

A number of computational methods are inspired by nature. Research in this group includes neural networks (inspired by the way that our brain solves problems) and evolutionary methods (inspired by Darwin's theory, where solutions are evolved rather than designed). More information

Natural Language Engineering and Web Applications

Research in Natural Language Engineering (NLE) aims at enabling computer systems to process natural language. This ability can be applied to tasks such as information retrieval and web search, information extraction and data mining, text summarization, and speech technology. More information

[top of page]