Communications & Sensing

These two seemingly unrelated topics are brought together by Aston's expertise with optical fibres.

The expansion of the Internet use has created a need for technologies capable of transmitting ever greater quantities of information over vast distances.

Photonics in sensing technologies:
Optical fibres now span the globe and the Aston Institute of Photonic Technology has been developing sophisticated methods of sending  more and more information over greater and greater distances, often exploiting cutting edge research in optical physics and non-linear science unlocking capacity of fibre channels. At the same time, the group possesses state of the art laser systems capable of modifying the internal structure of optical fibres to create a unique class of sensors.

They are beginning to find commercial application in such diverse fields as pressure monitoring at the bottom of oil wells, determining the temperature in electricity generators and checking for unsafe loads in the blades of wind turbines.

Aston is working to unlock a new generation of these devices with potential use in medicine, aerospace and even astrophysics.

Also, researchers in our Power Engineering & Power Electronics research group are working towards better systems for transmission and distribution of electricity, using state-of-the-art control systems and development of new electronic components. 

Aston 100 - The World's Longest Laser