Theory of Computation Research Unit
The Theory of Computation Research Unit researchers have contributed to a broad range of core computer science topics and have developed collaborations and research projects with leading research groups all over the world. Their research interests have also expanded into other research domains, including applications and tools development. The Unit's core activities include:
- publishing regularly in high impact international journals
- developing strong connections with leading research groups and prestigious scholars
- obtaining grants for various research projects (ROADBLOCK, High Performance Computing for FLAME, OSEPA, etc.) from main Research Councils
- active involvement in developing research-led teaching programmes
- developing an international profile including giving invited talks in major international conferences, participating in the organising of committees of major international conferences.
Applied Mathematics and Quantum Computing Research Group
The work of the group covers the areas of quantum computing, discrete mathematics, theory of elasticity, probability theory, statistics and reliability. The group has a very high international profile and collaborates with many universities worldwide. Current projects of group include:
- Quantum computing and quantum optical communications.
- Finite Quantum Systems. Galois fields in Quantum Computing and applications to coding and cryptography.
- Algebraic number theory (e.g., p-adic numbers) in Quantum Mechanics and harmonic analysis.
- Analytic functions in quantum computing.
- Group theory methods (e.g., profinite groups) in quantum computing.
- Lattices, topology and logic in the context of quantum computing.
- Time-frequency analysis, wavelets, applications to large data analysis.
- Mesoscopic Josephson devices.
- Solution of non-linear partial differential equations and their systems.
- Continuum mechanics, theory of Elasticity.
- Probability and statistics.
- Reliability theory.
- Numerical analysis and Pade approximants.
MTV focuses equally on theory and practice by contributing with key results in the new developments in theoretical computer science and providing practical software engineering solutions to industry and cross-disciplinary applications.
Our research interests mainly involve (i) developing computational modelling, verification and testing methods, (ii) applying them in the qualitative and quantitative analyses of complex, concurrent and stochastic systems, and (iii) designing and developing state of the art software systems and tools.
Its members collaborate widely with leading research groups and scientists across the world and welcome any joint research initiatives connected to the group’s research interests.
MTV has a strong track record of research projects supported by different funding organisations.
The group investigates a large variety of topics, including (unconventional) computational models, such as state-based models, rewriting and concurrent systems, formal logics-based specifications, formal verification, model checking, model-based testing, multi-agent systems, agent-based simulations and high performance computing. Our main application areas are:
- Systems and Synthetic Biology
- Computational Biology
- Membrane Computing
- Ubiquitous Systems
- Multi-agent Systems
- Swarm Intelligence
- Autonomous Systems
- Real-time Systems
- Safety-critical Systems
- Cyber-Physical Systems
- Vehicular Ad-hoc Networks
Any safety, security, robustness and resilience issues emerging from these systems and their formal analyses also fall into our research interests.
The MTV team members have been involved in the development of several novel and state of the art software tools and frameworks:
Infobiotics Workbench (IBW) is a software platform designed to model and analyse systems and synthetic biology. IIB permits applying various computational techniques, such as modelling, simulation, verification and biocompilation. The simulation component includes various simulation algorithms implemented in a high-performance environment, whereas the verification part integrates various model checkers. The biocompilation component helps selecting appropriate devices into the designed system. This novel integrative approach makes IBW the only tool synthesising these different techniques in one tool.
kPWorkbench is developed to support the computational analysis of membrane computing systems, in particular kernel P systems. kPWorkbench permits modeling, simulation and verification of membrane systems. The framework features a native simulator, a general-purpose large-scale agent based simulation environment, and several model checkers to formally verify membrane systems. The tool also features a query language based on natural language statements to express system requirements.
FLAME is a generic agent-based modelling system, which can be used to develop applications in many areas, e.g. biology, economy, meteorology, engineering, etc. It generates a complete agent-based application, which can be compiled and built on the majority of computing systems ranging from laptops to HPC super computers.
FLAME GPU is a high performance Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) extension to the FLAME framework. It provides a mapping between a formal agent specifications with C based scripting and optimised CUDA code. In FLAME GPU, simulation performance is significantly increased in comparison with desktop CPU alternatives. This allows simulation of far larger model sizes with high performance at a fraction of the cost of grid-based alternatives. Hence, massive agent populations can be visualised in real-time as agent data is already located on the GPU hardware.
Partners and collaborations
- Interdisciplinary Computing and Complex BioSystems (ICOS), Newcastle University
- Chemical Engineering at the Life Science Interface (ChELSI), University of Sheffield
- Centre for Biomolecular Sciences, University of Nottingham
- Verification and Testing Research Group, University of Sheffield
- Automotive Research Centre, University of Bradford
- Institute of Cancer Therapeutics, University of Bradford
- Centre for Advanced Materials Engineering, University of Bradford
- Research Group on Natural Computing, University of Seville
- Centre for Biomedical Computing, University of Verona
- IFSOFT, Romania
The group is affiliated to a lab, Computing Enterprise Centre, dedicated to the group's computing activities.