Our Engineering Project Exhibition

It was a busy afternoon at the Engineering Project Exhibition. Our final year students showed off their final projects to visitors, talking through what they were all about and giving demonstrations of their designs.

With most projects being industry- or research-based,  they covered a wide range of disciplines, from all aspects of automotive, aeronautical, mechanical and manufacturing, electrical and electronic engineering and design.

Congratulations to all involved on an interesting and inspiring show.

Reach for the sky

Graduate James Thompson has found his dream job – restoring historic RAF fighters from World War Two.

​James gained a BSc(Hons) in mechanical and manufacturing engineering and set his sights on a job that enabled him to use his practical skills.

James Thompson

James Thompson

At the same time, a Suffolk based company, Hawker Restorations, was looking for an apprentice to join their skilled engineers who keep most of the remaining Hurricanes fit to fly.

Hawker’s story appeared in a local newspaper and it was spotted by James’s auntie – and the rest is history.

He told the Suffolk Free Press: “I have always been passionate about aeronautical engineering and to find that there was an opportunity to work for one of the most respected aircraft restoration companies in the world was just brilliant.

“Here at Hawker I am putting to practical use the skills I learnt at university – using drills and lathes, and milling and welding.

“We design and make some of the components, so it is a very hands-on apprenticeship and the older chaps have been incredibly helpful.

“It is a privilege to be able to work on old aircraft that have played such a significant a part in history.”
Of his degree course, James said: “It fuelled my enthusiasm for aircraft engineering. The university gave me the opportunity to progress into a specialist career where I get to use both my head and hands.”

Engineering Project Exhibition 2016


 2pm to 6pm, Wednesday 20 April

Cockcroft Hall and sports hall, Cockcroft Building

Lewes Road, Brighton, BN2 4GJ

Advanced-level work undertaken by our final year students: each student will present their work on a poster, and will welcome the opportunity to answer questions and provide clarification on their projects.

Most projects are industry- or research-based and cover a wide range of disciplines, ranging through all aspects of automotive, aeronautical, mechanical and manufacturing, electrical and electronic engineering and design.

Please RSVP to: r.tonge@ brighton.ac.uk


We advise travel by public transport. See more information about travelling to the Cockcroft Building.

Parking is limited, so please advise if you will be driving when you RSVP. Spaces will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.


Advanced Engineering Building groundbreaking ceremony

The building, at the university’s Moulsecoomb campus in Brighton, will extend the university’s Advanced Engineering Centre, which works with a range of local engineering companies on innovative research in partnership with the automotive industry to allow for industrial knowledge-exchange.

The project will establish specialist teaching facilities alongside cutting-edge research laboratories. With the university’s long-term partner Ricardo, the Shoreham-based global engineering, strategic and environmental consultancy and specialist manufacturer, a dedicated combustion engine research area will be established on the ground floor alongside modern engineering workshops to support undergraduate and postgraduate engineering.

One of the Centre’s key focus areas is research into internal combustion engine thermal efficiency. The Centre was selected as one of six national ‘spokes’, for Internal Combustion Engines (ICE) Thermal Efficiency, by the Advanced Propulsion Centre UK (APC), formed in 2013 from a commitment between the government and automotive industry to bring together those with good ideas and those who can bring them to market. It will focus on research into low-carbon internal combustion systems.

Professor Debra Humphris, the university’s Vice-Chancellor, spoke at the groundbreaking ceremony: “This is a fantastic development between our partners Ricardo and the Government’s Local Enterprise Partnership funding.

“What this exemplifies is universities and industrial partners working not just to generate outstanding research and education opportunities, but to make a real impact on the economy.”

The university’s Interim Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research & Enterprise), Professor Andrew Lloyd, Dean of the University’s College of Life, Health and Physical Sciences, said: “The new Advanced Engineering Building will provide high-quality space for state-of-the-art equipment, provide flexibility for future expansion and create opportunities for new research and cross-transfer of knowledge, ideas and practices between the university, Ricardo and advanced engineering and manufacturing companies across the region.”

Attending the ceremony was Kelly Smith, a foundation year engineering student who is benefiting from working on the site whilst undertaking her course.

Dr John Taylor, Head of the School of Computing, Engineering & Mathematics, said: “The iconic Advanced Engineering Building represents both a recognition of our internationally excellent work in engineering and an exciting opportunity to further develop our research and knowledge exchange. We hope and believe these exciting, state-of-the-art facilities will act as a catalyst to further our existing collaborations and build new ones, thus enhancing the advanced engineering capability of the region.”

The Advanced Engineering Centre is part of the £150 million transformation of the Moulsecoomb campus the university is working in partnership with GRAHAM Construction’s London and South East team, the project’s main contractor, www.graham.co.uk

Graham Lawrence, Project Manager at GRAHAM Construction, said: “The groundbreaking ceremony marks a key milestone bringing us one step closer to delivering new state-of-the-art teaching facilities for the University of Brighton.”