UCL Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering


Professor Robert Killey elected Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering

20 September 2023

Professor Robert Killey, Professor of Optical Communications at the Optical Networks Group in the Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering has been elected as Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Profile Picture of Robert Killey

The Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) elected 73 leading figures in the field of engineering and technology to its Fellowship at their Annual General Meeting on 19 September 2023. The Fellowship, a distinction reserved for excellence in engineering, represents the nation’s best engineering researchers, innovators, entrepreneurs, business, and industry leaders.

Professor Robert Killey has been recognised for making pioneering contributions to optical fibre communications technology, in the areas of fibre nonlinearity and the applications of digital signal processing in optical transceivers. The techniques he has developed have been exploited by many leading optical communication equipment manufacturers.

His consultancy and collaborative research have resulted in direct technology transfer with numerous equipment manufacturing, network operating companies and computing/service providers, including BT, Corning, Ericsson, Microsoft, Intel, KDDI, OFS Optics, Semtech and Xtera.

He is a Fellow of the Institution of Electronic and Electrical Engineers, and an academic member of the Institute of Communications and Connected Systems. He remains a prominent investigator on the EPSRC grant TRANSNET, and is the Principal Investigator on the EPSRC grant 'Extremely Wideband Optical Fibre Communication Systems'. 

Professor Robert Killey said, “I am honoured and delighted to be elected Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. This is a recognition of the tremendous work that has been accomplished by the Optical Networks Group at UCL, and I have been very fortunate to work with the Head of Group, Prof Polina Bayvel, and many other exceptionally creative and supportive members of the group over the last 25 years.”

Professor Robert Killey, along with the 72 other Fellows, will be formally admitted to the Academy at a special ceremony in London on 28 November, when each Fellow will sign the roll book. In joining the Fellowship, they will lend their unique capabilities to achieving the Academy’s overarching strategic goal to harness the power of engineering to create a sustainable society and an inclusive economy for all.

Professor Sir Jim McDonald FREng FRSE, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said: “Engineering is everywhere, but nowhere the same, and our new Fellows represent the great breadth and diversity of engineers who are striving to address some of the world’s most complex challenges – benefiting society and the economy in the process. From next generation power networks and water systems to quantum computing and artificial intelligence, our new Fellows are shaping the future.

“We live in an era of rapid change across our communities, our country, and of course our planet. Today we welcome to our Fellowship an inspiring group of people who are harnessing their creativity, courage and commitment to drive positive change in the world around us and we look forward to their contribution to our work.”

See the RAEng press release along with a full list of the Fellows here