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'Research' news articles - Page 8

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From Shakespeare to shale gas: Research Week at Kingston University showcases some of the pioneering work being undertaken to tackle challenges facing today's society

Posted Friday 31 March 2017

From Shakespeare to shale gas: Research Week at Kingston University showcases some of the pioneering work being undertaken to tackle challenges facing today's society

Research Week is an annual event that showcases some of the groundbreaking research taking place at Kingston University. Many of the University's researchers are working at the cutting edge of their fields, linking up with industry partners to address issues of real significance to today's society. In the Government's latest Research Excellence Framework, 60 per cent of the University's research was classed as world-leading or internationally excellent.

This year Research Week is taking place from Sunday 2 to Friday 7 April. The week-long programme of events will highlight the work of research students and academics across areas ranging from health, digital technologies and engineering to the creative industries, global economics and contemporary philosophy....


Award-winning record producer Tony Visconti returns to Kingston University for the inaugural Visconti Winter School

Posted Tuesday 28 March 2017

Award-winning record producer Tony Visconti returns to Kingston University for the inaugural Visconti Winter School

Legendary music producer Tony Visconti has returned to Kingston University's bespoke Visconti Studio for the first ever Winter School, sharing his expert knowledge in analogue recording techniques with a select group of students from across the globe.

The week long intensive programme saw ten lucky participants join forces to assist the producer record a single with the London based band Artbreak. Under the guidance of Visconti, the students engaged in analogue recording techniques and experimented with vintage equipment and mixing techniques....


Etna's volcanic awakening shines the spotlight on new volcanic research at Kingston

Posted Thursday 23 March 2017

Etna's volcanic awakening shines the spotlight on new volcanic research at Kingston

Dr Christopher SatowLast week, the Etna volcano on Sicily began erupting again after nearly two years of slumber. Several journalists and tourists were caught out by an explosion as they visited the summit to report on, and marvel at, the extreme pyrotechnics of this natural wonder. Mercifully they escaped with only minor injuries. While Etna is a well-studied volcano, the latest events there show that we are still some way from understanding the details of the processes which control these most dangerous, but awe-inspiring of natural phenomena. A new Natural Environment Research Council grant (£54,000 worth of analytical costs) to geologists and geographers, led by Dr Chris Satow, at Kingston University will help to address this.

There are some volcanic principles we understand well. Gas bubbles forming in sticky magmas tend to produce highly explosive eruptions such as the famous Mt St Helens or Pinatubo eruptions in the 1980s and 90s. Runny magma with little gas generally produces gentler eruptions; rivers of more tourist-friendly lava rather than huge explosions. Etna lies between these extremes. Add water to the mix (a melting glacier for example) and you'll have an ash cloud, as we remember so disruptively from the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in Iceland in 2010. Geologists use these principles to interpret the layers of spikey lavas and ash on the slopes of a volcano, and determine how it might behave in the future; gentle lavas or explosive ash clouds. These results are used to inform risk maps, evacuation plans, insurance policies and government mitigation strategies. But an idea first proposed by Bill McGuire in 1997 (McGuire et al., 1997) fundamentally challenges this hazard prediction method. What if volcanoes don't behave now as they have in the past? What if the constantly changing climate of the Earth has changed their style, or eruption frequency, through time? Evidence from past events might then be useless for predicting future volcanic behaviour. Evidence is emerging that this might be the case. A meticulous catalogue by Sebastian Watt from Oxford University (Watt et al., 2013) has revealed that volcanic eruptions occur more frequently during periods of Earth's history when the climate has been warmer. The proposed reason for this is intriguing. As glaciers and ice sheets recede, the removal of their mass from the Earth's crust allows magma to propagate more easily to the surface. It's like unscrewing the cap of a fizzy drink. Cool the climate and the glaciers and ice sheets are reapplied to the crust; the cap of the fizzy drink is screwed back on. A project at Kingston University, funded 'in-kind' by the Natural Environment Research Council, in collaboration with researchers at UCL, Oxford, Leicester and the Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre, intends to extend this concept to island volcanoes and sea level change. Lower sea levels such as those during the last glaciation, should, according to the theory, allow more frequent eruptions. Higher sea levels, as we have today should produce less frequent eruptions but those eruptions may be more explosive....


QS World University Rankings place Kingston University in top 100 globally for art and design

Posted Friday 17 March 2017

QS World University Rankings place Kingston University in top 100 globally for art and design

Kingston University has been named among the top 100 institutions in the globe for art and design education in the prestigious annual QS World University Rankings – and rated as a top performing international university in six other areas.

The newly-released 2017 QS subject league tables ranked the University's art and design offering in the 51-100 band worldwide, placing it among the top five per cent globally and the best 25 in Europe. In total, six other course areas were rated as being in the UK's top 50 and top 400 internationally. Education was placed in the 151-200 category globally – and the top 70 in Europe – while economics and econometrics courses were ranked in the 201-250 band....


Sophisticated virtual reality centre puts Kingston University students at forefront of computer games design

Posted Monday 13 March 2017

Sophisticated virtual reality centre puts Kingston University students at forefront of computer games design

Kingston University is set to play an integral part in shaping tomorrow's gaming geniuses with the opening of a state-of-the-art facility that will give its computer science students a perfect platform to launch their industry careers.

The University has invested £53,000 to create the Centre for Augmented and Virtual Reality Environments - more familiarly known as the CAVE - at Penrhyn Road campus. It gives students access to a treasure trove of equipment such as virtual reality headsets that can transport the wearer into an immersive alternative environment and equipment that tracks eye movements and brain activity to monitor how much someone is enjoying playing a game....


QS Global 250 Business Schools report ranks Kingston Business School among top 33 in United Kingdom

Posted Friday 24 February 2017

QS Global 250 Business Schools report ranks Kingston Business School among top 33 in United Kingdom

Kingston Business School has been ranked among the 33 best full-time MBA programmes in the United Kingdom in the QS GlobalBusiness Schools Report. The school is listed as a ‘superior' business school for employability and research and is also placed among the 38 best business schools in the UK, Ireland and the Nordic Countries region.

The QS report is based on a survey of more than 12,000 international MBA employers, who were asked to select the schools they consider most attractive for hiring MBA graduates from. The QS Intelligence Unit also carried out a five-year survey of 76,798 academics from all over the world - the largest survey of academics conducted - asking them which institutions they considered excellent for research. The results from both the employers and academics were combined to produce the final ranking....


Kingston University secures €900,000 grant to explore how drones, smart wristbands and cameras could transform future of concert security

Posted Thursday 9 February 2017

Kingston University secures €900,000 grant to explore how drones, smart wristbands and cameras could transform future of concert security

How a network of drones, smart wristbands and body-mounted video cameras could be used to help keep people safe at large outdoor concerts will be explored by Kingston University experts as part of a major new European research project.

Sound and technology experts from 28 partner institutions across the continent have come together for the three-year €15m European Commission-funded project MONICA. The international study initially arose from attempts to find a solution to mitigating the impact of noise levels on residents during outdoor rock shows held at Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens....


Dangerous ingredients rife in health food supplements, according to research by Kingston University biomolecular scientist

Posted Wednesday 8 February 2017

Dangerous ingredients rife in health food supplements, according to research by Kingston University biomolecular scientist

People taking herbal and sports supplements could be risking their lives as many contain hidden pharmaceutical ingredients that could pose serious health threats, according to a biomolecular scientist from Kingston University.

Professor Declan Naughton, from the University's Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing, worked with a team of experts from Queen's University Belfast and science testing company LGC to investigate the detection of illegal ingredients in food supplements. "We found many products claiming to be herbal in fact contained unlicensed pharmaceutical ingredients that were not listed on the label," Professor Naughton explained. "People are taking supplements they presume are safe and healthy, but they are unknowingly taking huge risks if these products contain substances they are not supposed to."...


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