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Engineering & Design REF 2021 impact case studies

From aircraft wings to concrete bridges, our research is having global impact. Read the stories behind our Research Excellence Framework submission.

Health and wellbeing

Our research is contributing to human health and wellbeing by improving air quality in transportation systems around the world and developing innovative prostheses for amputees.


We are reducing carbon dioxide emissions by designing more efficient car engines and turbines, improving the manufacturing process of airplane wings and extending the lifetime of bridges and structures.

Saving structures across the globe

Antony Darby tests the strength of a concrete beam in our structures lab.

We’ve developed assessment and strengthening techniques for ageing concrete bridges and structures. Our guidance is used by consulting engineers worldwide.


Our research on digitalisation of industrial processes has made the UK electricity grid more efficient, reducing carbon emissions and consumer costs. It is helping protect satellite communications and reducing waste generation in resource extraction.

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Faculty of Engineering & Design submitted nine impact case studies to the Engineering Unit of Assessment and 100% of our impact was ranked world leading or internationally excellent. REF assesses the quality of research in UK universities.

Ref 2021 logo

These case studies are submitted to the Engineering Unit of Assessment.