Meet the team: Midlands Centre for Data-Driven Metrology

University of Nottingham

Prof Samanta Piano (Director, Midlands Centre for Data-Driven Metrology)


Prof Samanta Piano is Professor of Metrology, Director of the Centre and Head of the Manufacturing Metrology team at the University of Nottingham (UoN). Her research interests concern the development of innovative and unconventional optical techniques and 3D probing systems for high-precision coordinate metrology to be used in industrial applications. She is currently investigating how artificial intelligence approaches can be used for camera calibration in 3D measurement systems. She is a former Marie Curie and UoN Advanced Research Fellow who has contributed to several forefront areas of experimental condensed matter physics, materials science, atomic and optical physics, metrology and nanotechnology. She has published in international peer reviewed journals, including three papers in the prestigious Physical Review Letters, one in Applied Physics Letters, and six refereed book chapters. She is currently co-supervising five PhD students, working on novel optical measurement techniques, defects in additive manufacturing and machine learning techniques for 3D optical measurements.



Prof David Branson III 


Prof Branson is a chaired Professor of Dynamics and Control, Deputy director of the Manufacturing Metrology Team and director of the Nottingham Advanced Robotics Laboratory in the Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, UK. He has held industry, research and teaching positions in the United States, United Kingdom and Italy providing extensive experience in the design, modelling and control of complex, multi-body, non-linear systems. Current research applications focus primarily on manufacturing and healthcare including: the integration of advanced metrology and machine learning to improve positioning performance in industrial robots; soft robotic based continuum surfaces undergoing large, actuated deformations; production of novel textile and biomaterials; and robotic production methods in Industry 4.0 environments.



Bronya Norton

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Bronya Norton is General Manager of the Midlands Centre for Data-Driven Metrology at the University of Nottingham. Bronya has a BSc (Hons) in Biology from the University of York and a PgDip in Health Services Research from the University of Nottingham.She has worked for the University of Nottingham for over 22 years in a variety of roles: Research Associate, Student Administration, Research Project Management, Knowledge Transfer and Business Development. Bronya joined the Centre in February 2024. 



Dr Adam Thompson


Dr Adam Thompson has been a post-doctoral researcher in the University of Nottingham (UoN) Manufacturing Metrology Team (MMT) since October 2018. Prior to this position, Adam completed his PhD in UoN’s MMT as part of the Centre for Doctoral Training in Additive Manufacture, entitled “Surface texture measurement of metal additively manufactured parts by X-ray computed tomography”, for which he was awarded the Gertrude Cropper Scholarship postgraduate prize by UoN. In his 5 years as an active researcher, Adam has published over 20 papers and a book chapters, and presented his work at over 30 international conferences. Adam’s research background is in surface texture measurement of additively manufactured parts, authoring papers on the measurement of metal and polymer parts. Adam also has expertise across metrology, having undertaken postdoctoral projects in performance verification of fringe projection and X-ray computed tomography measurement. Adam also has a deep understanding of co-ordinate and in-process measurement principles, having taught numerous undergraduate and postgraduate courses in basic advanced metrology and performed research activities in the area. Prior to his PhD, Adam taught high school physics.





Athanasios Pappas






Loughborough University

Prof Peter Kinnell



Peter is a Professor in Metrology and held an EPSRC Manufacturing Fellowship in Collaborative Metrology for High Value Manufacturing. He is the assoc. Director of the Intelligent Automation Centre at Loughborough University where he leads the research team working on 3D vision for robust intelligent measurement. He is currently working on the creation of new sensing technology, new algorithms for advanced data processing, and implementing measurement systems within automation and manufacturing systems.



Prof Niels Lohse



Niels is a Professor in Manufacturing Automation and Robotics. He is the Director of the Intelligent Automation Centre at Loughborough University. His research interests are in the field of intelligent automation and include manufacturing system modelling, human-machine interaction, distributed control, diagnostics and design decision-support with a primary focus on modular and evolvable production systems and applications of artificial intelligence techniques in manufacturing.



Dr Wen Claire Guo
Wen Claire Guo
Dr. Claire Guo is a Research Associate in Metrology and Digital Perception at the Intelligent Automation Centre (IAC), Loughborough University.


Coventry University

Prof Marcos Kauffman


Professor Kauffman is the Director of the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME) and the Centre Director for the Research Centre for Manufacturing and Materials at Coventry University. He has a background in innovation and business model transformation complemented by direct industrial experience and the track-record of successfully leading and delivering a successful large research intensive centre. He joined the AME in 2016 as Innovation and Digitalisation Director. In this role he led and delivered successful cross-disciplinary R&D projects in a mixed industrial and academic setting, bringing together researchers from different disciplines and sectors to derive viable solutions to complex business problems and conceptualise new collaborative methods that explore optimality in engineering-business contexts.

Prior to joining the Coventry University, Professor Kauffman worked for over 10 years in senior roles across the UK manufacturing industry, leading cross-disciplinary industrial R&D projects ranging from operational improvement projects, to IT/OT projects designed to integrate engineering teams and generate value.

Professor Kauffman originally studied Agro-Business in South America and later has studied LLB Honours, Law degree at the University of Buckingham in England. He has completed his PhD at the Centre for Business in Society (Faculty of Business and Law) at Coventry University. The main focus of his research was to critically evaluate the impact of the fourth industrial revolution on manufacturing business models and intellectual property strategies in the automotive manufacturing industry. The project was particularly concerned with the implementation of horizontally integrated value networks exchanging vast amount of information containing Intellectual Property.

Professor Kauffman has a mix of practical and research experience in the areas of Intellectual Property Strategies, Innovation Strategies, Digital Manufacturing, Digital Strategy, Intellectual Property Law, Contract Law and Commercial Law.



Dr Glen Turley


Dr. Glen Turley is Principal Engineer of Manufacturing Metrology within the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME) which forms part of the Research Centre for Manufacturing and Materials at Coventry University. Glen has a background in Manufacturing Engineering, Dimensional Engineering and Metrology within the Automotive, Medical and Consumer Electronics fields. Glen joined Coventry University in August 2023 with the target to bring together academic research and industrial applications within the field of Metrology to support the global challenges in sustainable and world-leading manufacturing.

Prior to joining Coventry University, Glen worked for 10 years within Silicon Valley holding Engineering and Senior Management roles within Rivian, Apple, and Tesla. Before working in Silicon Valley, Glen was a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Wawick, and began his career as a Technical Apprentice at Jaguar Land Rover.

Glen holds a 1st Class Bachelors of Engineering, a Master's of Engineering by Research and an Engineering Doctorate in Manufacturing Systems from the University of Warwick.



Dr Lara Harris

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Dr Lara Harris is a Research Fellow in Digital Twin Measurement Systems at the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering, Coventry University. She has a background in applied industry-led research and was previously an Industry Collaboration Fellow in the UKAS-accredited Acoustics Laboratories at the University of Salford. Here she designed and delivered projects for commercial clients, and made a significant contribution to the calibration team’s successful application to become the UK’s newest Designated Institute – the National Institute for Airborne Acoustic Metrology. Before returning to academia, Lara worked as an engineer in the automotive and industrial safety sectors. Her roles spanned a wide range of responsibilities across commercial R&D and product delivery, working with suppliers and manufacturing teams, where she developed a particular interest in the quality impacts of process measurement and control.





Dr Hua Guo


Dr Hua Guo acquired his MSc. in Automotive Engineering at Coventry University. Later at Coventry, he was also rewarded with a PhD in Mechanical and Automotive Engineering. The project was partially funded and supported by Dunlop Aircraft Tyres Limited, the research area was finite element modelling, simulation and analysis on Aircraft tyre and rubber-like materials.

Since 2014, He works under Professor Trevor Toman, as a researcher and metrologist in the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME), taking the responsibilities in developing and delivering academic-industrial collaborated projects, funded by Innovate UK, EPSRC, other public and private funding bodies from the metrology perspective. He manages the AME metrology laboratory, under the guidance of ISO 17025 standard towards UKAS accreditation, also participates a lot and leads some of the industrial orientated commercial metrology consultancy activities. Those include and not limited to product and process development and problem solving for local SMEs and OEMs in various industrial sectors.

Thanks to those valuable experiences, his areas of interests and expertise have expanded to Dimensional Metrology, GD&T and Quality Control, Product, Manufacturing and Metrology Process Development, CAE simulation and correlation, Laboratory Management, Academic-Industrial Collaboration in Higher Education and Research.

Under the banner of MCDDM, Hua’s efforts will be focused on supporting local SMEs to solve problems through consultancy activities, and to further develop the capabilities of those companies through collaborated research. 





Wayne Sadler



Wayne Sadler is a Manager, Metrologist and Lecturer working for : Clean Growth and Future Mobility (CGFM) : one of a group of research centres that make up Coventry University’s research community. 

Wayne has a background in manufacturing, working for 15 years as a time-served toolmaker in the Power Generation sector. Transferring his skills internally, he worked for 5 years as a designer of Jigs, Fixtures, Press Tools and Dies. 

Changing roles, he was employed by a global metrology instrument supplier as a teacher of software-based metrology systems. Promoted into a management role he oversaw departments in education and commercial measurement. 

After 11 years and, to tailor his work/life balance, he moved to another major global metrology player as a teacher in ‘first principle’ and automated measurement. 

In 2015, Wayne was recruited by Coventry University as a teacher of : Continuous Professional Development (CPD) for all Dimensional Metrology subjects. Since joining, he has migrated into both lecturing and research roles, supporting many commercial projects for CGFM and contributing to several academic papers.