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Last updated 15th March 2023


Dr Qunfen Qi is a senior research fellow in the EPSRC future advanced metrology hub at the University of Huddersfield. Qunfen has a BEng degree in Mechanical Engineering and an MSc in Measurement Technology. She was awarded a PhD by the University of Huddersfield on 2013 with a thesis entitled “Bridging the knowledge gap between design, manufacture and measurement in the field of surface texture” under the supervision of Professors Dame Xiangqian Jane Jiang, Professor Liam Blunt and Professor Paul J Scott at the Centre for Precision Technologies (CPT), University of Huddersfield.

Qunfen’s research lies in the field of knowledge modelling for manufacturing covering: smart information systems, abstract mathematical theory (category theory), Geometrical Product Specifications and Verification (GPS), additive manufacturing (AM), surface design and metrology. She has worked for ten years in developing decision-making tools for smart product design and inspection, using category theory as its foundation.

Qunfen is recently awarded an EPSRC UKRI Innovation Fellowship. The aim of her fellowship is to develop a universal categorical language that supports semantic representation, reasoning and interrogation for the manufacturing system, especially for AM, where traditional design for manufacturing rules or guidelines are no longer applicable, and expertise in AM design, process control and inspection is in growing demand. The formalisation of AM knowledge will help designers in understanding: the capabilities and limitations of various type of AM process; how geometrical design and process parameters affect each other; and how to configure process parameters to guarantee the required geometrical variability. This will greatly improve the process repeatability and part-to-part reproducibility, and significantly reduce power usage and failure rate, lower the cost of production and make a more environmentally-friendly manufacturing technology.

Qunfen is a member of the EPSRC Peer Review Full College, a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), an EPSRC sponsored member of Women's Engineering Society (WES). She was invited to give several talks (UK, China) representing woman scientists to speak about her research vision and share her experience. She also contributes to teaching in Mathematics, Mechanical Science and Engineering and Dynamic Systems, supervision of post-doc research fellows, co-supervision of PhD students, supervision of Masters students and final year undergraduate students. She has peer reviewed for leading journals in advanced manufacturing such as Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing, Virtual and Physical Prototyping, Measurement Science Review, Computer-Aided Design, International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technologies, Materials, Measurement Science Technology, Precision Engineering, ASME Journal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture, and multidisciplinary journals such as IEEE Access,  and Applied Sciences.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure

Research Expertise and Interests

  • Knowledge representation
  • Category theory for knowledge representation
  • Knowledge modelling of Additive Manufacturing
  • Fundamental structure of Geometrical Product Specifications and Verification
  • Knowledge representation of GPS
  • Surface texture design and metrology
  • Geometrical tolerance design and metrology
  • Computer Aided Tolerancing
  • Uncertainties of GPS


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