I am passionate about research into the manipulation of microscopic particles using the forces generated by ultrasonic waves. My teaching interests centre around electronics and project based learning.
In recent years I have worked closely with biologists and clinicians and become inspired to use ultrasound to solve problems they face in creating structures of cells outside of the body, and to design new microfluidic systems for detecting diseases. I also use acoustic manipulation to create new and powerful imaging systems for imaging human cells and plankton from ocean samples. I also enjoy the creative challenge of designing new kinds of particle manipulation device and studying the underlying physics of acoustic tweezing.
Ultrasonic levitation awakens curiosity about science and technology in both the young and old. I have created an interactive exhibit that I have taken to events including the Royal Society Summer Exhibition, Cheltenham Science Festival, Glastonbury Science tent, and many other venues. I am also interested in the interface between Science / Engineering and the Arts.
I graduated in Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton, and was an IET scholar. During my 2001 Ph.D., "Vibration powered generators for self-powered microsystems", I created the world’s first piezoelectric vibration energy harvester, and was a key part of the recent dramatic growth of interest in energy harvesting. My designs also led to the spin-off company Perpetuum. I am currently President of the Acoustofluidics Society which shapes research and brings together the international researcher research community.
Peter is the Mechatronics theme leader for the Mechanical Engineering undergraduate programme, and offers a range of projects in this area at undergraduate, masters and PhD level.