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Robert Ranson

Robert Ranson

Principal Lecturer

School of Science & Technology

Staff Group(s)
Computing and Technology


Principal Lecturer – Undergraduate Programme Manager (Computer Systems and Technology Clusters)

Dr Robert Ranson is the Programme Manager of both the Technology and Computer Systems undergraduate cluster of courses within the academic team of Computing and Technology. He is module leader of Level 1 module – Introduction to Programming and Level 3 module - Final Year Projects. In addition, he teaches on the postgraduate modules of Emissive Display and Economics of Choice (MSc in Display Systems, Technology and Applications).

Dr Ranson is also the Consultant for luminescent material characterisation and phosphor-based sensors for Thin Film Services, a service provider to external companies/universities.

Research areas

Dr Ranson is a member of the Displays Research Group.

Research Fellow:

  • Dr Costas Tsakonas

Areas of research include material and device engineering for optoelectronic devices and sensing technology.

  • Material and device engineering of phosphor materials for sensing technology: One of the major properties of phosphor-based materials is their ability to emit light once excitation has ceased. The luminescence of a phosphor has the associated characteristic of the decay-time - the time taken for the intensity of the emitted light to fall by an exponential factor. It is the dependency of this decay-time upon external environmental factors that enables its unique characteristic to be utilised as a sensor. Recently, an ESPRC research grant has been awarded to investigate the potential of phosphors for use within biomedical and environmental laser-based optical sensors. One particular application currently being investigated is that of a temperature sensor to monitor the human body temperature of a patient while undergoing an MRI scan.
  • Material and device engineering of thin films for optoelectronic devices: Thin film electroluminescent devices have been investigated by the research group for the past 20 years. Work has concentrated on thin film materials and processes for the development of thin film electroluminescent devices. Recent developments include advances in phosphor layers, ZnS:Mn and SrS:Cu,Ag, and thin film transparent conductive layers, namely ITO and ATO. Over the last five years, major success has involved the use of an excimer laser to modify the deposited thin film layers in order to improve their efficiency. Currently, the excimer laser is being utilised to investigate the laser processing of inkjet printed layers on flexible substrates.

Opportunities to carry out postgraduate research towards an MPhil/PhD exist in all the areas identified above and further information may be obtained from the NTU Graduate School.

External activity

Dr Robert Ranson is the Consultant for luminescent material characterisation and phosphor-based sensors for Thin Film Services (TFS). TFS offers a range of thin film deposition, processing and characterisation services to industry and academia via access to facilities in the Class 100 Thin Film Display Laboratory based at the Clifton campus.

Sponsors and collaborators

Current and recent research is being conducted with the collaboration, funding and/or support of:

  • Central Laser Facility, RAL
  • Central Microstructure Facility, RAL
  • Department of Trade and Industry
  • Easibind International
  • Engineering and Physical Science Research Council
  • Filtrona plc
  • IFM Company
  • Keeling and Walker Ltd
  • Lite Array Inc, China
  • Logystyx UK Ltd
  • Loughborough Surface Analysis Ltd
  • Oxsensis Ltd
  • Patterning Technology Ltd
  • PERA
  • Phosphor Technology Ltd

University collaborations include the University of Greenwich, South Bank University and Brunel University.

Research funding in the period since 2003 includes:

  • KTP, W Cranton and R Ranson, Filtrona (2009 to 2012), £95,000
  • HESSLIS, W Cranton and R Ranson, DTI (2007 to 2009), £310,181
  • SRELD, W Cranton and R Ranson, DTI (2006 to 2009), £ 67,000
  • KTP , W Cranton and R Ranson, Easibind International (2006 to 2008), £100,000
  • Phosphors for Biomedical and Environmental Sensor, R Ranson, EPSRC GR/T27792/01 (2005 to 2008), £123,533
  • ELJET, W Cranton and R Ranson, DTI/EPSRC (2003 to 2005), £175,500


Selected Publications


See all of Robert Ranson's publications...