Past event

Service and platform design in a meta theme world

Tuesday 4 December 2018 3.30pm - 6.00pm 58 Prince's Gate, London, SW7 2PG Seminar with startup exhibitions

In partnership with the Dyson School of Design Engineering, Imperial College London

Design engineers are problem solvers who bridge the gap between traditional engineering and design to create innovative solutions to modern challenges, from improving passenger comfort on commercial airlines to designing next-generation sports prostheses. It’s a highly creative discipline that draws on knowledge of manufacturing techniques, product development, technical design and rapid prototyping to bring new innovations to market, and to improve existing products and the processes used for making them.

Join us for an afternoon to find out about the latest research from the Dyson School of Design Engineering and discuss the implications of engineering design for your business. You will hear about human centred design, user co-design processes, human data interaction, as well novel, divergent robotic systems and audio experience design.

15:30 – Arrival and refreshments
15:45 – The future of the Dyson School of Engineering – Professor Peter Childs
16:00 – Academics presentations
17:00 – Q&A
17:30 – Startup pitches

To view the presentations from the academics from the event, please click on each speaker tab.

Startups and projects
Abnormal Design offers algorithmic design services for product design, engineering and the arts. Their approach is specifically suitable for additive manufacturing and is widely applicable to products ranging from fashion to fuselages. By combining coding with 3D modelling, their algorithms can generate highly complex forms which enable light weighting, mass customization, simulation based designs and much more.

Aeropowder is a startup creating novel materials from surplus feathers. Their aim is to create useful materials from waste that exists in society and has a mission to ensure that the future is built upon more sustainable foundations.

BladeBug Limited is a UK start-up SME developing a robotic crawler for detailed inspection, maintenance and repair of wind turbine blades. The crawler will be capable of navigating on the surface of and straddling the leading edges of wind turbine blades and will deliver visual and ultrasonic non-destructive testing (NDT) inspection payloads, as well as tooling to enable it to perform work as part of blade repairs.

Future Music are are a team of three Design Engineers using transducer technology to turn any object into a sound source and create a new set of audio experiences for the future. Our aim is to achieve this through intelligent, interconnected devices that can be distributed in the environment to create an immersive sound landscape and enhance social engagement with music.

The event will be followed by a reception from 18:00 – 20:00 celebrating the enterprising activity at the College.

Professor Peter ChildsAcademic
Head of the Dyson School of Design Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Dyson School of Design Engineering
Imperial College London

View the slideshow presentation by Professor Childs and watch the talk from the event.

Professor Peter Childs is Head of the Dyson School of Design Engineering and the Professorial Lead in Engineering Design at Imperial College London. His general interests include: creativity; the application of creativity tools; mechanical and product design; robotics; rotating flow, temperature and its measurement, sustainable energy component, concept and system design.

He was formerly the director of InQbate, the HEFCE funded Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Creativity, director of the Rolls-Royce supported University Technology Centre for Aero-Thermal Systems and a professor at the University of Sussex.

His roles at Imperial include: joint course director for the Innovation Design Engineering double Masters degree at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College; as well as having active roles with a number of companies including Q-Bot Ltd (Founder Director and Chief Scientific Officer), and Strategy Foresight.

Dr Céline MougenotAcademic
Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering, Dyson School of Design Engineering
Imperial College London

View the slideshow presentation by Dr Mougenot and view the talk from the event.

Dr Céline Mougenot is a Lecturer in Design Engineering at the Dyson School of Design Engineering. Her research aims at developing design tools and design methods to enhance designers’ creativity, to facilitate interpersonal collaboration in design projects and to support co-design activities with users. She is also interested in the assessment of user experience.

Her roles at Imperial College include coordinating the “Solo Project” module on the Design Engineering M.Eng. programmeand tutoring on Innovation Design Engineering programme jointly run with the Royal College of Art.

Before joining the School, Céline created and developed a Design Research group at Tokyo Institute of Technology(Japan). She previously worked at the University of Tokyo(Japan) and Dassault Systemes (France).

She is currently involved in research projects with Tokyo Institute of Technology, the University of Tokyo and Telecom Paris Tech.

Dr Nicolas RojasAcademic
Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering, Dyson School of Design Engineering
Imperial College London

Watch the video of Dr Rojas’ presentation from the event.

Dr Nicolas Rojas is a Lecturer in the Dyson School of Design Engineering at Imperial College London, where he leads the REDS Lab. His research focuses on the analysis, design, and implementation of novel, divergent robotic systems that can purposefully perform physical changes to the world around us under diversity and uncertainty. Dr Rojas is interested in both gross and fine manipulation with the long-term goal of creating robots from scratch that surpass the manipulation capabilities observed in humans and other animals in all conditions.

Before joining Imperial, Dr Rojas was a Lecturer in Mechatronics in the Department of Engineering and Design at the University of Sussex, a Postdoctoral Associate in the GRAB Lab, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science at Yale University, and a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the SUTD-MIT International Design Centre at the Singapore University of Technology and Design. He is originally from Colombia where he earned his undergraduate degree in Electronics Engineering at Javeriana University and his Master’s degree in Industrial Engineering at the University of Los Andes. Dr Rojas obtained his PhD in Robotics with the Institute of Robotics and Industrial Informatics at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia.

Dr Lorenzo PicinaliAcademic
Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering, Dyson School of Design Engineering
Imperial College London

View the slideshow presentation by Dr Picinali and view the talk from the event.

Dr Lorenzo Picinali is a Senior Lecturer in Audio Experience Design, the Director of Undergraduate Studies and leads the Human Performance and Experience (HPX) research theme with the Dyson School of Design Engineering. In the past years, he worked in Italy (Università degli Studi di Milano), France (LIMSI-CNRS and IRCAM) and the UK (De Montfort University and Imperial College London). During this time, his research focussed on projects related with 3D binaural sound rendering, interactive applications for visually and hearing impaired individuals, audiology and hearing aids technology, audio and haptic interaction and, more in general, acoustic virtual and augmented reality. The research that he has been involved in the past years focussed mainly on the implementation of a binaural spatialisation tool, which also integrates a hearing loss simulation and virtual hearing aids (, and on Head Related Transfer Functions selection, evaluation and adaptation.

He is currently the module leader for DE2-BD Big Data and DE3-AXP Audio Experience Design, and is a tutor for the GID and IDE MA/MSc programs at Imperial College London, in collaboration with the Royal College of Arts.

More information about Lorenzo’s activities can be found at

Dr Sam CooperAcademic
Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering, Dyson School of Design Engineering
Imperial College London

View the slideshow presentation by Dr Cooper and view the talk from the event.

Dr Sam Cooper is a lecturer in the Dyson School of Design Engineering and member of the Electrochemical Science and Engineering group. His work is primarily focused on the design of next generation energy storage technologies, as well as exploring the use of machine learning approaches in this space. He is currently the lecturer for the first year Mathematics course as well as the departmental Admissions Tutor. In 2018, Dr Cooper built an online course on Multivariate Calculus for the Coursera specialisation Mathematics for Machine Learning, in collaboration with the Digital Learning Hub.