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  • It's all about knowledge.

    The idea is that when you do a PhD you want to discover something. It's all about learning how to solve problems.

    People think that PhDs only stay in academia but beyond that in the industry is also interested in doing research and development.

    Within CAS, the Centre for Autonomous Systems, we do research in robotics. We have, for example, the climbing robot of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and we have other robots in agriculture, defence and transport. The Faculty of Engineering & IT has a long history of collaborating with the industry.

    Most of our PhD students are tackling real-world problems. For instance, a group of our PhD students is currently collaborating with the Department of Defence to develop new algorithms and navigation for an underwater glider.

    My team is working with the underwater glider which is a very energy efficient piece of technology. It travels up to 3 months without coming back to recharge. Our industry partner is especially interested in gathering data from multiple sources so we'll send this out simultaneously and we'll gather the data and piece it together.
    Working with these industry partners is very different than working with academia because the kind of problems they give you is based on the real world so the kind of solutions we need to give them is something that`s backed with theory and some technical details so that problem is solved.

    In robotics and other fields of engineering, it is very hard to work in isolation. 

    In CAS, we have wide open spaces for collaborative research and this really fosters the collaboration between different people, allowing us to solve problems that really give the outcomes the world needs.

    The best skill you can develop as a PhD is the ability to think critically. Besides becoming an expert on a specific field, you will be able to develop a hypothesis, test it, develop the experiment and all these skills are really applicable for real-world problems.

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  • Liz Sullivan

    Women in Engineering and Information Technology

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    I’m Teresa Vidal Calleja, I’m senior lecturer at the School of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering and core researcher at the  Centre for Autonomous Systems.

    My research is in robotics. I investigate algorithms for sensing and perception to make robots autonomous.

    The key goal is that with my research, the robots are able to perceive their environment and decide where to go, or to do the task they are required to do.

    Text on screen: Why robotics?

    It’s thriving, everybody now has realised it will be great to have robots doing automation tasks and sending robots to places where humans cannot access.

    I don’t see it as robots taking peoples’ jobs…It’s just robots helping society to be more productive.

    Text on screen: Path to Engineering

    Ever since I was little I was interested in maths, that was my favourite subject, I loved it.

    I was kind of undecided whether I will study physics or engineering, finally I decided on engineering.

    When I started studying engineering, mechanical engineering, I knew I wanted to do robotics.

    Text on screen: Why UTS, why now?

    In Australia in particular there is a very... there is an excellent research in field robotics. In UTS in particular for infrastructure maintenance, we are one of the best in the world for this.

    Text on screen: More women in Engineering and IT

    There is nothing gender related, it’s nothing that can be tackled only for men or women, it’s a research and engineering field, it’s growing and everybody can jump on it.

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