Niels graduated with a Dipl-Ing degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Applied Science Hamburg, Germany in 2000; obtained his MSc degree in Technology Management from the University of Portsmouth in 2001 and received his PhD degree in Manufacturing Engineering and Operations Management from the University of Nottingham in 2006.
He joined Loughborough University and the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Intelligent Automation in 2014 as Associate Director. Niels became the Director of the Intelligent Automation Centre, which was formed in 2017 following the conclusion of the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Intelligent Automation and was awarded the personal title of Reader in Manufacturing
Automation & Robotics in August 2018.
His research interests are in the field of intelligent automation and robotics including manufacturing system modelling, human-machine collaboration, distributed control, self-organising systems, diagnostics and design decision-support, with a primary focus on dynamic and evolvable production systems and applications of artificial intelligence techniques in manufacturing.
Niels has extensive experience of working in and leading high-profile, multi-partner multidisciplinary research projects (6 EU, 1 ESRC. 2 Nottingham IMRC, 4 direct industry funded projects, and 1 KTP project). In addition, Niels has contributed as CoI on a further 7 EU funded projects constituting a total career research funding of £11.2M. This work has resulted in over 70 peer reviewed journal and conference papers and the successfully supervised 5 PhD students to completion and is currently supervising 10 more PhD students. Some of them industrial funded (Rolls-Royce, Airbus, HSSMI, MTC).
He is a member of the IEEE Technical Committee on Industrial Agents. He has received a number of awards for his work including the Outstanding Paper (2012) and Highly Commended Paper (2004) awards from the Emerald Literati Network for his publications in Assembly Automation.