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UCL Centre for Nature Inspired Engineering

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Inspiration Grant Awardees

The CNIE Inspiration Grants scheme was launched in 2015. So far, 24 projects have been funded.

The aim of the CNIE Inspiration Grants is to encourage collaboration and engagement between UCL researchers, leading researchers across the UK, and industry. The wider aim is to grow the Centre’s engagement and outreach, further validate and promote nature-inspired approaches to engineering, and initiate new research projects tackling key industrial and environmental challenges, by taking inspiration from nature.


Inspiration Grants

2021

Simona Migliozzi, PDRA in Chemical Engineering (Award date October 2021)

  • Project: Pickering emulsions with nature-inspired structural stability for stimuli-responsive drug delivery
  • Project Partner: School of Pharmacy, UCL

Yang Lan, Lecturer at the Department of Chemical Engineering, UCL (Award date October 2021)

  • Project:Carboxysomes-inspired Photocatalytic System for CO2 reduction
  • Project Partner: Melville Laboratory for Polymer Synthesis, Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge

Matthew Chin, PDRA in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: The immune “mind”: bioelectrical and structural networks in decision-making

2020

Yanan Liu, PDRA in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature inspired graphene-based membrane for water treatment
  • Project Partner: University of Bath

2019

Eseelle Hendow, PDRA in Cancer Trials Centre

  • Project: Investigating How Nature Inspired Hierarchical Structures Influence Cell Behaviour

Ye Yang, PhD Student in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Electrolytes in regulating protein-mimetic amphiphilic nanoparticles
  • Project Partner: University of York

Stavroula Balabani, Professor of Fluid Mechanics

  • Project: Microswimmer inspired microscale transport in complex fluids
  • Project Partner: University of Bristol

Max Besenhardt, PDRA in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature inspired green, tunable & scalable synthesis of magmentic nanoparticles
  • Project Partner: University of Sheffield

Kaiqiao Wu, PhD Student in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Bubble self-organisation in annular gas-solid fluidised beds: transition from 2D to 3D structures
  • Project Partner: Heriot-Watt University and Particulate Solid Research Inc (US)

Jonathan Knowles, Professor of Biomaterials Science at Eastman Dental

  • Project: Mussel Inspired Chemistry and bacterially synthesised polymers for Oral Mucosal Adhesion and Drug Delivery
  • Project Partner: University of Sheffield

Ryan Wang, Lecturer in Chemical Engineering, and Magda Titirici, Chair in Sustainable Energy Materials (Imperial College London)

  • Project: Nature inspired ‘cation channels’ for all solid-state battery
  • Project Partner: Imperial College London

2018

Jason Cho, PDRA Student in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature-Inspired Water Management in Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) Fuel
  • Project Partner: Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin (D)

Lixu Yang, Teaching Fellow in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature-inspired Self-healing Materials from Plastic Waste
  • Project Partner: University of Nottingham and BASF

Asterios Gavriilidis, Professor of Chemical Reaction Engineering

  • Project: Novel microfluidic chemotaxis screening platform for high-throughput bacterial viability quantification
  • Project Title: Queen Mary University London

2017

Silo Meoto, PDRA in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Bioactive aerogels: development of a remineralizing toothpaste material
  • Project Partner: Queen Mary University London

Kathrine Holt, Professor in Physical Chemistry

  • Project: Growth of iron sulphide through electrochemical control: towards exploitation of nature’s remediator, catalyst and electron transfer mediator
  • Project Partner: Loughborough University

Ryan Wang, Lecturer in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature inspired ‘synthetic enzyme’ for the oxygen reduction
  • Project Partner: Diamond Light Source

Darren Nesbeth, Associate Professor in Synthetic Biology

  • Project: An applied, engineered oscillation inspired by the natural oscillatory behaviour of HIV
  • Project Partner: University of Aberdeen

Anna Ploszajski, PDRA in Mechanical Engineering

  • Project: Nature Inspired 4D printing for biomedical applications

2016

Panagiota Angeli, Professor of Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Nature-Inspired Confined Jet-Mixers for Ionic Liquid-Liquid Extraction Applications
  • Project Partner: University of Belfast and Queen's University of Belfast

Mark Miodownik, Professor of Materials & Society

  • Project: Robust self-healing fabrics for soft robotic applications

Stephen Marshall, Professor of Urban Morphology and Urban Design

  • Project: The self-organising built environment: calibrating relationships across scales
  • Project Partners: University of Edinburgh, University of Oxford, University of Surrey, Bristol University

2015

Jayesh Bhatt, PDRA in Chemical

  • Project: Modelling hierarchical transport network of rocks using multiscale modelling and X-ray tomography
  • Project Partner: University of Surrey

Brenda Parker, Associate Professor in Biochemical Engineering

  • Project: 3D printing underwater: the regenerative marine fishing nets of salps
  • Project Partner: British Antarctic survey

Niall Kent, PDRA in Chemical Engineering

  • Project: Bioactive aerogels: preclinical development of a novel bone grafting material
  • Project Partner: Queen Mary University London, Institut Staumann AG (CH)

Asterios Gavriilidis, Professor of Chemical Reaction Engineering

  • Project: Pulsating flow inspired by blood circulation to improve fluid dynamics in flow
  • Project Partner: University of Strathclyde