SEMS holds 7th Russell Binions PhD Symposium

25 April 2024

Zimpi Helen Kono is awarded a prize by Head of School, Prof Hazel Screen
Zimpi Helen Kono is awarded a prize by Head of School, Prof Hazel Screen
Eathan Plaschka with Head of School, Prof Hazel Screen
Eathan Plaschka with Head of School, Prof Hazel Screen

The 7th annual Russell Binions Memorial PhD Symposium took place on Thursday 25th April at the School of Engineering and Materials Science.

Each year, The Symposium provides an opportunity for our PhD students and Postdoctoral Research Assistants to formally present their work to their peers and academics in the School.

Three sessions ran throughout the afternoon, from the Centre for Intelligent Transport, Sustainable Engineering and Bioengineering research centres.

Each presentation was ten minutes long, and the researchers had to answer questions afterward.

Following the sessions, Dr Man Zhang from Leeds University, who received her PhD at Queen Mary, gave a keynote lecture, and a drinks reception accompanied a prize ceremony.

Prof Himadri Gupta said “The research by our PhDs is at the core of SEMS research advances, and we are delighted with the consistently high standard of their presentations. It was also great to see how postdoctoral researchers worked with their PhD colleagues in discussing their research and preparing them for talks.”

Congratulations to all the prize winners and participants.

Best Paper:


First prize: Haipeng Liang - ‘A pneumatic Driven MRI-Guided Robot System for Prostate Interventions’

Second prize: Carlos Eduardo Neri-Cruz - ‘A Guide to Functionalisation and Bioconjugation Strategies for Surface-Initiated Polymer Brushes’

Sustainable Engineering

First prize: Maria Olczak - ‘A global review of methane policies reveals that only 13% of emissions are covered with unclear effectiveness’

Second prize: Suwei Lei - ‘Temperature and composition insensitivity of thermoelectric properties of high-entropy half-heusler compounds’

Centre for Intelligent Transport

First prize: Hirak Kansara - ‘Inverse design and additive manufacturing of shape-morphing structures based on functionally graded composites’

Second prize: Cihat Emre Üstün - Data-driven prediction of laminar burning velocity for ternary ammonia/hydrogen/methane/air premixed flames’

Best Presentation:


First prize: Beth Louise Cutting – ‘Development of a kidney organ-chip model to study therapeutic regulation of primary cilia mechanobiology’

Second prize: Zimpi Helen Kono – ‘miRNAS Sequence Embedding For Pathway Detection And Selectivity using Machine Learning’

Sustainable Engineering

First prize: Jessica Spencer-Dene – ‘Membrane-Assisted Antisolvent Crystallisation: A Cheaper and Greener Approach to Peptide Synthesis?’

Second prize: James Botwright – ‘PEPSTAR: Peptide Synthesis by Nanostar Sieving’

Centre for Intelligent Transport

First prize: Eathan Plaschka – ‘Exploring Friction and Wear Characteristics of Tire Tread Compounds: How to Advance Safety and Sustainability During Development’

Second prize: Bijoy Das – ‘Foe to Friend: Utilising Gradual Positive Temperature Coefficient (PTC) Effect for Sustained Self-Regulating Heating Devices with High Temperature Thermoplastic Elastomer Nanocomposites’

Contact:Himadri Gupta
Research Centres: