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Surrey part of Government-funded IoT consortium

The University of Surrey joins other leading universities to drive forward UK research in the Internet of Things (IoT).

The PETRAS consortium, which was launched by Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy Ed Vaizey on 6 January 2015, is an interdisciplinary research hub aimed at maximising the economic and societal opportunities of the Internet of Things (IoT) - the emerging technology by which millions of devices will become connected.

Funding for the hub – over three years – includes a £9.8 million grant from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), which will be boosted by partner contributions to approximately £23 million in total.

Surrey joins a prestigious list of UK universities in the consortium including UCL (leading the consortium), University of Oxford, University of Warwick, Lancaster University, University of Southampton, University of Edinburgh and Cardiff University.

Lending its expertise in mobile communication technology (spearheaded by the 5G Innovation Centre), security and IoT, the University of Surrey will drive two projects, one relating to privacy and security for Connected Autonomous Cars and the other concerning security and key management for smart meter application. The University’s 5G testbed – the only one of its kind in the UK – will also be employed not only by Surrey researchers but also other consortium partners.

Dr Haitham Cruickshank, who will lead the hub research at Surrey, commented: “I believe the PETRAS project will enhance the University’s reputation in the area of cyber security research related to IoT systems, and also give Surrey the leading edge in research related to cyber security for Connect Autonomous cars and Smart Meters, as well as in energy internet areas.”

Digital Economy Minister, Ed Vaizey said: “UK universities are renowned for their creativity, and pioneering research and development. We want the UK to be a world leader in the adoption of Internet of Things technologies, and I know that bringing these universities together with partners from the UK's thriving tech industry will be instrumental in making this a reality.”

Professor Philip Nelson, EPSRC’s Chief Executive, said: “In the not too distant future almost all of our daily lives will be connected, in one way or another, to the digital world. Physical objects and devices will be able to interact with each other, ourselves, and the wider virtual world. But, before this can happen, there must be trust and confidence in how the Internet of Things works, its security and its resilience. By harnessing our world-leading research excellence this PETRAS research Hub will accelerate IoT technology innovation and bring benefit to society and business.”

The PETRAS project is part of IotUK, a three-year, £40 million Government programme that seeks to advance the UK’s global leadership in IoT and increase the adoption of high quality IoT technologies and services throughout business and the public sector.

Learn more about Surrey's Institute for Communication Systems and the 5G Innovation Centre.

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