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Computer, software and electronic engineering

Real-world impact through software revolution

Our research involves developing new electronic circuits, computer architectures and signal-processing algorithms to address societal problems ranging from mental health to defence.

Our research

Computer technology has revolutionised nearly every aspect of society. Our research is concerned with developing new computer hardware, algorithms and methodologies to accelerate computations, improve wellbeing, learn from data and provide virtual reality. We have dedicated researchers in the areas of computer architecture, parallel and distributed systems, signal processing, embedded systems, learning analytics, machine learning and affect computing.

Our experts: Professor Philip Leong, Dr David Boland

Our partners: Imperial College, Harbin Institute of Technology, University of British Columbia

Our industry partners: Westpac, Zomojo, DST Group

Reconfigurable computing concerns research into design practices and computer planning. Platforms used include very large-scale integration (VLSI), field programmable gate arrays (FPGA) and parallel computing. We are currently studying financial time series prediction, real-time signal processing and nanoscale interfaces. Through specific problem-solving strategies, significant improvements can be achieved in execution time, power consumption and chip area.  

Our experts: Professor Rafael Calvo, Professor Philip Leong, Associate Professor Abelardo Pardo, Honourary Associate Professor David Levy, Honourary Professor Hong Yan, Professor Bran Selic

Our industry partners: Malina Software Corporation   

Software engineering forges new directions in human-computer interaction and concerns affect-aware learning technologies and systems that support mental health. It involves text mining and machine learning to support collaborative learning and more general human-computer interactions. The work is based on collaborations with psychologists, and educational and mental health researchers. For example, research into detecting emotions and cognitive states from physiology, computer vision such as facial expressions, posture and behavioural data can be used to create adaptive human-computer interaction. Our research also extends into applications concerning the Internet of Things, cloud computing and eHealth.

Our experts: Associate Professor Craig Jin, Associate Professor Alistair McEwan, Mr Nicolas Epain

Computing and audio research consists of three main areas: spatial audio, neuromorphic engineering and bioelectronics. Spatial audio deals with elements including how humans localise sounds, the effect of room acoustics on sound perception and generation of augmented and virtual reality audio. Our collaboration with the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory and the Acoustics Research Laboratory makes us one of the world’s largest research groups in this field.

Neuromorphic engineering investigates biological auditory processing and applies principles learned from biology to electronic systems. Our aim is to develop a two-dimensional electronic cochlea and spiking networks that perform basic auditory computations.

BioElectronics aims to develop hardware and algorithms to measure and classify biological signals such as ECG, EMG, EEG, 3D position and location, skin conductivity and blood oxygenation. Our work will produce a portable Electronic Impedance Tomography Spectroscopy device that can be used for monitoring stroke and epilepsy as well as detecting cancer.

Our experts: Professor Joseph Davis, Associate Professor Bernhard Scholz, Associate Professor Bing Zhou, Professor Albert Zomaya

Our partners: Dr Lavy Libman, UNSW; Dr Young Choon Lee, Macquarie University; Dr Javid Taheri, Karlstad University, Sweden

Distributed and high-performance computing spans a complementary mix of both theoretical and experimental research, such as algorithmics and analytics, green and cloud computing, virtualisation technologies, networking, Internet of Things and service computing. It measures its impact in areas including health, energy management, embedded systems, sensors and mobile platforms.