University of Southampton

New Boundaries research magazine

Find out all about the latest research breakthroughs, projects and stories by reading the latest edition of our research magazine New Boundaries. 

Read the Autumn 2014 edition of New Boundaries

What stories are in the latest edition?

Innovation in prosthetic technologies – page 4

Southampton research is improving the lifespan of joint replacements and optimising the effectiveness of prosthetic limbs through innovative measures in sensory technology, surgical procedures, computational analysis, 3D printing and stem cell technology.

“What we have is a living composite with the patient’s bone stem cells. We discovered how to control stem cells on nanosurfaces and were able to induce hard tissue to form directly onto an impact surface, enhancing bone integration and reducing the prospect of revision surgery.” Richard Oreffo, Professor of Musculoskeletal Science

Imaging the world – page 10

We celebrate 40 years of Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS), a groundbreaking discovery made by University of Southampton professors Martin Fleishchmann, Patrick Hendra and Jim McQuillan.

This pioneering technology is now used across many different fields, most notably in medicine where it is being used for the early detection of cancer and in stem cell therapy.

“SERS is arguably the most sensitive method of analysis on surfaces that anyone has ever come up with[.]” Patrick Hendra, Professor of Chemistry

Collaborating with CERN

Our researchers are working with CERN to design new experiments

Collaborating with CERN

Exploring the universe – page 15

The Southampton Theory Astrophysics and Gravity (STAG) research centre is collaborating with CERN (the European Organisation for Nuclear Research) to investigate the origins of dark matter, dark energy and the difference between the amount of matter and antimatter in the universe.

“We make precise predictions and then compare them with experimental results hoping for a discrepancy which would signal the presence of new physics and provide a clue for physics beyond the Standard Model.” Professor Chris Sachrajda, Director of the Southampton Theory Astrophysics and Gravity (STAG) Research Centre

Preventing wear and tear – page 16

Green tribology research at Southampton is helping to find new ways to reduce waste, extend equipment life and reduce the carbon footprint of mechanical systems.

“The thing that sets our research centre apart from others is that every project is applied science that solves problems for industry. Tribology touches every area of science; it is closely linked to applications and solving real-world problems.” Dr Ling Wang, National Centre for Advanced Tribology at Southampton.

Sustainable electric

We have designed a system to help the National Grid cope with the demand of electric cars

Sustainable electric

Power and influence – page 20

International law expert Dr Matthew Nicholson discusses the situation in Ukraine.

“My research focuses on debating the legality of what is going on in the world, relating to power structures and law’s influence.” Dr Matthew Nicholson

Green electrics – page 22

Our computer scientists have designed a new pricing system to make charging electric vehicles more effective – a crucial step in ensuring that the anticipated pressure of charging electric cars does not overwhelm the National Grid in years to come.

“Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are expected to place a considerable strain on local electricity distribution networks. If many vehicles charge simultaneously, they may overload the local distribution network; so their charging needs to be carefully scheduled.” Dr Enrico Gerding, Electronics and Computer Science

Curing malaria

We are utilising mobile technology to help eradicate malaria

Curing malaria

Mobile phones combat malaria – page 26

Southampton research is at the forefront of the worldwide battle to eradicate Malaria, by using mobile phone usage data to map the movements of populations in and between malaria ‘hotspots’.

“Our findings suggest it may be possible for malaria elimination to proceed like a ratchet, tightening the grip on the disease region-by-region, country-by-country, until eradication is ultimately achieved – but without the need for a globally coordinated campaign.” Dr Andy Tatern, Geography

Plus in brief

  • Fit for the frontline – detecting auditory fitness (page 28).
  • Caging water – a pioneering method to study the molecular changes of atoms at cryogenic temperatures (page 29).
  • ME treatment – A collaborative study reveals shortcomings in ME specialist care (page 29).
  • Top business incubator – SETsquared incubation centre is named the number one university business incubator in Europe and second in the world (page 29).
  • Causes of antisocial behaviour – Southampton uses interdisciplinary approach to investigate causes of antisocial behaviour (page 30).
  • Speed of light – New discovery could have an impact on photonic and optoelectric devices (page 30).
  • Combating cerebral palsy – Southampton PhD student investigates the therapeutic value of Wii Fit balance board games in children with cerebral palsy (page 30).
  • Calling the shots – Researches at Southampton are analysing the involvement of women behind the camera in UK Film (page 31).
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