to Dr Chris Richards who has joined the SML team from Harvard to commence work on his ERC grant on Paleo-robotics & the Innovations of Propulsion in Amphibians.
to Sharon Warner for the successful defence of her PhD thesis "Foot design, locomotor impact dynamics and pathology in
Large mammals " on 7 March.
Welcome back to
Peter Falkingham returns to the RVC following two years Fellowship at Brown University.
Scientists of the Future
The Pupil Science Panel from Wroxham Primary School spent a day in the lab finding out how we study animal locomotion.
The Structure & Motion Laboratory is part of the Comparative Physiology and Medicine Research Programme at the Royal Veterinary College. The research team includes vets, biologists, palaeontologists, engineers and computer scientists, supported by technical and administrative staff. Our research base is a modern 46m x 17m laboratory at the College’s Hertfordshire campus housing state-of-the-art facilities for studying the biomechanics of locomotion; much experimental research is also undertaken in the field.
The head of the lab is Professor Alan Wilson.
Structure and Motion
Animals, including ourselves, need to move to feed, to avoid becoming food, to find a mate, to compete and to indulge in complex behaviours such as play. Our goal is to answer fundamental questions relating to how and why animals are structured and move as they do, how movement is controlled and the limits to performance. We work with a wide range of animals, from horses, dogs and humans to dinosaurs, elephants, cheetahs, insects, birds and squirrels...
A wide range of science and technology
Questions about animal movement can be addressed from many different perspectives using, for instance, high-speed cameras, ultrasound, force plates and computer models. Technical expertise, together with our extensive facilities, also enables us to develop new technology to measure and analyse movement in ways not previously possible.
This range of approaches is complemented by an equally wide range of investigations, from looking at tiny muscle fibre bundle contractions to investigating group dynamics in herds of animals and even phylogenetic analyses of broad evolutionary lineages.
As part of our commitment to wide communication of our research, most members of the Structure & Motion Lab take part in engagement and outreach activities, ranging from blogs to presenting at school science events, contributing to public exhibitions as well as television and radio programmes. We have an ongoing programme of public engagement activities.