Head of School, Honorary Graduand and recent Visiting Professor elected to Royal Academy of Engineering

Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering images
Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering

Three academics associated with the School of Engineering have been elected as Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) in recognition of their status as leading lights of the engineering community.

Head of School, Professor Conchúr Ó Brádaigh and recent Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor, Uwe Stein, have been elected as Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering, while the School's Honorary Graduand, Professor Andrea Goldsmith of Princeton University, has been elected as an International Fellow.

They were among 72 new Fellows elected at the Academy's Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, 20 September.

Existing Fellows nominate new Fellows on the basis of making exceptional contributions to their sector, pioneering innovations, leading progress in business or academia, providing high-level advice to government, or promoting a broader understanding of engineering and technology.

The new Fellows will be formally admitted to the Academy at a special ceremony in London on Tuesday, 8 November, when each Fellow will sign the roll book. 

In joining the Fellowship, they will add their unique capabilities to the Academy's mission to harness the power of engineering to create a sustainable society and an inclusive economy for all.

Professor Conchúr Ó Brádaigh

Professor Ó Brádaigh is a leading international authority on composite materials. Specialising in research in the design and manufacture of fibre-reinforced composite materials, he has developed innovative materials and processes for use in the aerospace and renewable energy sectors, including cryogenic fuel tanks and blades used in wind turbines and tidal stream turbines. 

In recent years, Professor Ó Brádaigh was instrumental in creating FastBlade, the world's first test facility using regenerative hydraulic technology to offer high-quality, efficient fatigue testing for composite structures such as those used in wind tidal turbine blades, based at the Arrol Gibb Innovation Campus (AGIC) in Rosyth, Fife.

Professor Ó Brádaigh's impact spans industry and academia, having co-founded and developed the only aerospace composites company in the Republic of Ireland. Over his career, Professor Ó Brádaigh has been awarded four patents and his status as a leading technologist was recognised by the inaugural Sir Bernard Crossland Medal for Engineering Innovation, presented by Engineers Ireland.

Alongside his research and commercial activities, Professor Ó Brádaigh is actively involved in developing the School of Engineering's curriculum, teaching courses in composite materials and polymers, and supervising many research students.

Professor Andrea Goldsmith

Professor Goldsmith is Dean of Engineering and Applied Science and Arthur LeGrand Doty Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Princeton University, and was awarded an Honorary degree by the University of Edinburgh in 2018.

Professor Goldsmith has led several seminal advances in the fields of information and communication theory, and their application to wireless communication systems. In particular, she is a pioneer of adaptive modulation and coding technology, which all mobile telephones now use to enable communication at the fastest data rates that radio channel conditions will allow.  

Professor Goldsmith has made significant contributions to our understanding of multiple antenna technology, often termed MIMO, now routinely used in Wifi and fifth generation mobile phones. Additionally, she developed key advances in energy efficient wireless communications that is now being increasingly exploited for new applications such as distributed sensing and computing.  

Professor Goldsmith combines academic achievement with commercial impact – having founded Accelera, later Plume WiFi, which produced the world’s first self-optimising home WiFi services. She was also a cofounder of Quantenna, a pioneer in providing high-performance multi-antenna WiFi chipset solutions. 

Professor Goldsmith has dedicated much of her career to mentoring faculty and students and improving the experience of engineering undergraduates, particularly women and minorities. 

Dr Uwe Stein

Dr Stein is currently Technical Director of Flowcopter, a company using innovative digital hydraulics to develop industrial heavy lifting drones, enabling long range, heavy payload logistics. Dr Stein graduated with an engineering diploma in Germany and holds a PhD from the University of Edinburgh.

Dr Stein, together with Professor Win Rampen FREng and Dr Niall Caldwell developed the next generation of digital hydraulic machines that led to the university spin out Artemis Intelligent Power. In 2008 the company moved to Loanhead, later becoming part of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to develop their 7MW offshore wind turbine and other applications. Dr Stein was instrumental in the growth of Artemis Intelligent Power, its sale to MHI in 2009, and further growth over the next 10 years.

In 2015 Stein, due to his innovative mechanical designs of Artemis Digital Displacement pumps, was part of the team that won the MacRobert Award for Engineering, the UK's highest accolade for commercially successful engineering innovation.

Dr Stein was also a Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor at the University of Edinburgh, where he has helped to reconfigure the undergraduate engineering design courses as well as acting as an advisor to the University's team in Formula Student, a student engineering competition to design, build, test, and race a small-scale Formula One-style racing car.


Professor Peter Grant, former Head of the School of Engineering at the University of Edinburgh, said:

"We are extremely pleased that our Head of School, Professor Conchúr Ó Brádaigh, who has pioneered many technical innovations in lightweight composite materials for the design, manufacture and testing of blades for renewable energy wind and tidal turbines, has been recognised by his personal election to Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

"Our recent Honorary Graduand, Professor Andrea Goldsmith who is the Dean of Engineering and Applied Science at Princeton University in New Jersey, has been elected as an International Fellow. This recognises her as a world-renowned pioneer in wireless communications, who founded of two US companies to produce and market the world's first self-optimising WiFi system which provides high data rate WiFi throughout the home."

"The former Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor, Uwe Stein, has also been recognised with personal election to Fellowship. Uwe, our former PhD student, was a key individual in the development of the highly efficient digital hydraulic technology that resulted in the spin out company Artemis Intelligent Power, subsequently acquired by Danfoss."

Sir Jim McDonald, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said:

"I am delighted to welcome such an array of enormously talented people to the Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Engineering. In an uncertain world, one thing is certain – engineering skills, vision and leadership will play a crucial part in addressing the escalating domestic and global challenges that we face today. 

"The combined connectivity, professionalism, experience and wisdom of the new Fellows who join us today will greatly enrich the expertise and support we can provide to the government and to society in general."

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