Dr Jonathan Davidson

PhD, MEng

Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering

Senior Lecturer

Electrical Machines and Drives Research Group

Headshot of Jonathan Davidson
Profile picture of Headshot of Jonathan Davidson

I joined the department in 2006 and studied both my MEng and PhD here, graduating in 2010 and 2015 respectively.

After a brief time as a postdoctoral researcher, I was appointed as a lecturer in the Electrical Machines and Drives group in 2015. I was made Senior Lecturer in 2022.

In both my research and teaching, I address interdisciplinary problems and themes and work with other academics from departments across the faculty.

My main research focus is on power electronics and covers two distinct but overlapping topics: electrical power conversion, and impedance sensing and system modelling. My power conversion research covers primarily resonant converters using both traditional magnetic resonant tanks and piezoelectric transformers (Grant: FPeT £600k, 2017) and lately high frequency supplies for chemical species selective reactions (Grant: Targeted waveform plasma reactor £980k, 2019). Notable successes in the field include the development of a design criterion for efficient piezoelectric transformers and a thorough exploration of the geometry requirements for transformers.

I have applied impedance sensing and system modelling to several areas. In the converters scene, it has driven the evaluation of piezoelectric transformer design and it is an enabling technology for the chemical species selection. In addition, it is the primary enabler of work on sewage sensing (Grants: Hydro Intl £200k, 2019; NBIC £50k 2020) which focusses on early detection of sediment build-up, examining the chemistry during destructive testing of electrochemical cells and producing accurate dynamic thermal models of power electronics.

My teaching focus has been on electrical engineering for interdisciplinary engineers. I was originally appointed as the electrical engineering lead to design a new programme in general engineering; I continue to lecture students in their first and second years on electrical engineering and interdisciplinary design. In 2021, I was appointed Deputy Director of Aerospace Engineering where my focus is on the design and operation of the avionics curriculum.

My teaching uses a combination of traditional visualiser note-making, pre-prepared videos, role-play group work and laboratory projects to provide students with an experience of all that engineering has to offer. I also offer final year projects to general, aerospace and electrical engineering students.

  • PhD (Electronic and Electrical Engineering), University of Sheffield, 2015
  • MEng (Electronic Engineering), University of Sheffield 2010
Research interests
  • Power electronic converters and drives
  • Piezoelectric transformer-based power supplies
  • Electrical sensing of water systems
  • Thermal modelling and temperature estimation
  • Pseudorandom binary sequences for system identification
  • Electrochemical battery modelling

Journal articles

Conference proceedings papers


  • Forrester J, Li L, Davidson J, Foster M, Stone D & Reaney I Investigation of using BSPT for ring-dot piezoelectric transformers for use in high-temperature resonant power supplies. Oxford. RIS download Bibtex download
Professional activities and memberships
  • Deputy Director, Aerospace Engineering
  • Electrical engineering theme liaison, General Engineering