Milton Keynes Hospital benefits from cutting edge research at University of Buckingham

City minister Iain Stewart impressed by 'flying'machine and robotic dog

By Reporter
Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 7:47 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 7:48 am

A government minister from Milton Keynes was impressed by the high-tech facilities and research at the University of Buckingham during a ‘flying’ visit last week.

Under Secretary of Scotland Iain Stewart toured the newly refurbished computing labs as well as the rooms housing the university’s new robotics equipment, partly funded by Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP.)

He had a go at virtual flying using the computing faculty’s Birdly machine, which enables the user to swoop over landscapes using virtual reality.

MP Iain Stewart with Prof Harin Sellahewa of University of Buckingham

He also met the new robotic dog, Spot, which is available for use in conjunction with other local organisations.

Spot has the ability to go into a dangerous, burning building to collect data for use by the local fire authority.

The MP was told about how the links are blurring between faculties. There is overlap between computing and law and psychology and AI, for example. The university’s computing, law and psychology dean, Prof Harin Sellahewa, led the tour.

Mr Stewart said: “I enjoyed my visit to see the recently renovated school of computing and have a tour of the facilities on hand to the students and the local community.

“I was pleased to hear about the work the university is undertaking and the benefits it will bring to the residents of Milton Keynes including work with the hospital.”

Prof Sellahewa added: “Iain was delighted at being greeted tby our robotic dog.

“He showed great interest in the new robotics lab and enjoyed trying out our

virtual flying machine, Birdly that is part of the new games and immersive technologies lab.

“He asked about how we link with technology companies locally and was interested to hear we are addressing the digital skills gap in the area by training the next generation in AI, robotics and cyber security skills.”