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Professor Samia Nefti-Meziani

Prof. Nefti-Meziani holds Doctorat D’etat in robotics and artificial intelligence and is Director of the Centre for Autonomous Systems & Advanced Robotics, and Chair of Robotics at the University of Salford. In this role, she leads a multidisciplinary team of 6 academics and 12 researchers  in automation, robot/machine design, dexterous end effectors, legged robots, soft robotics, biologically-inspired robots, haptics/telepresence, physical human-robot interaction, rehabilitation robotics, cognitive robotics, uninhabited autonomous systems. She is an internationally leading researcher in  embodied intelligence and cognition. She has 25 years’ experience in advanced theoretical research in the areas of embodied intelligence, advanced robotics where the focus of her contribution is in the development of concepts, mechanisms and algorithms. She has pioneered the first application of  Soft Robotics in manufacturing.

She has published extensively in the above areas and the rigorous quality of her publications in AI and Robotics is evidenced by their high impact factors in Journals. The application value of her research has attracted significant national media coverage on Sky, the BBC, ITV, Granada, in addition to  print and on-line media. She has wider practical cross sectorial technologies including Nuclear Food, Agriculture, Nuclear, Aerospace & Defence, and Healthcare through several projects.

She has also extensive leadership experience as a former Director of the Doctoral School of the 6* IRIS Research Institute (2005-08). She has been responsible for 150 doctoral students and all postgraduate research provision across various departments, and has nurtured a strong research culture and  environment, which received the highest award for research environment (4*) in the 2008 (RAE). She has successfully supervised and graduated more than 30 PhD students and has extensive experience running very successful industrial sponsored robotics PG programmes at national and international level which  attract more than 100 post-graduate students every year.

Prof. Nefti-Meziani is a proven strategic leader of multi-national, multi-sector, multi-faceted and complex Robotics & Artificial Intelligence research programmes. She is renowned for her extensive experience of leading and managing large scale multi-disciplinary research projects, funded by EU,  involving multiple academic and industrial partners. Examples include the research and training programme SMART-E (€4m), for which she is the PI and which included 20 partners, comprising 7 academics and 13 companies, RobotCub (€8.5m), NovelQ (€11.3m) and ASTRAEA(£32m) and also the GAMMA (£9m) project  that engaged 50 SMEs with 46 research proposals. She was also heavily involved in the management and delivery of CENFRA (£5m) and ASCEII(£16m. Through these programmes, and her role as an expert in robotics, she has worked very closely with food, aerospace and nuclear supply chain to deliver proof of  concept and innovative low-cost robotics solutions for these programmes. She has also managed and delivered other projects funded by innovateUK and EPSRC as PI and Co-I.

She is co-founder of the Northern Robotics Network (NRN), which is an associate partner of the RAS-SIG. Its membership includes a range of leading nuclear sector organizations. She has worked seamlessly with the partners of the NRN’s industrially led Extreme Environment Cluster across a wide cross-section  of industry sectors. This work has been part of the consultation discussion with EPSRC and innovate UK, which has helped inform the area of focus of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. She is Vice Chairman of IEEE Robotics and Automation UK & RI, Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Fuzzy  Systems, served as Advisory board member for Chamber of commerce in France, the Asian council and the EPSRC centre for innovative manufacturing and Member of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Peer Review College.

Research Grants

Project name: KinectING FRAILTY

Medical Research Council Confidence in Concept (CiC) ROUND 4 2016: Full application, £ 91,021

Start date: 01/01/2017

Project name: MIHome

Salford Royal Trust and SallixHome

Capital funding scheme, £ 352,586

Start date: 01/10/2016

Project name: Marie Curie-Fellow

EC (Framework), £70.000

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani

Start date: 06/2017

Project name: Robotics and Autonomous systems “In Touch”

In Touch Ltd, £60,000.00.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (100%).

Start date: 08/2016

Project name: Autonomous Swarm-Based Mission Planning and Management System

Minister of Defence, £36,916.00.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (100%).

Start date: 02/2016

Project name: EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Intelligent Automation - Feasibility Study

EPSRC, £49,924.00.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (50%). Co-Investigator: S Davis (50%).

Start date: 05/2015

Project name: KTP with HellermannTyton Ltd

Technology Strategy Board, £152,176.00.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (50%). Co-Investigator: S Davis (50%).

Start date: 05/2014

Project name: Sustainable Manufacturing through Robotics Training in Europe (SMART-E)

EC (Framework), €4M.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (83%). Co-Investigators: S Davis (10%), P Scarf (7%).

Start date: 10/2013

Project name: GAMMA: Growing Autonomous System Mission Management Applications (£9M)

Regional Growth Fund, £312,137.00.

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani

Start date: 01/2012

Project name: The Aerospace Supply Chain Excellence (ASCE) 2 Programme ( £16M)

Principal Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani

Start date: 06/2012

Project name: Challenging established rules for train control through a fault tolerance approach

EPSRC, £345,887.00.

Principal Investigator: T Mei (66%). Co-Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (34%).

Start date: 02/2010

Project name: ASTRAEA T7

BAE Systems, £20,000.00.

Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (100%).

Start date: 08/2008

Project name: NovelQ - Novel processing methods for the production and distribution of high quality and safe foods

EU, £71,725.00.

Investigators: S Nefti-Meziani (35%), J Gray (50%), D Caldwell (15%).

Start date: 03/2008

Project name: Academic Fellowship 2004 (Virtual Environments and Future Workspaces Research Centres)

EPSRC, £125,000.00.

Investigator: S Nefti-Meziani (100%).

Start date: 06/2007

Project name: The portal for projects and communities in the virtual organisation domain (VE-Forum)

EC (Framework), £136,106.00.

Investigators: S Nefti-Meziani (30%), G Cooper (30%), Y Rezgui (40%).

Start date: 01/2005