I think the most satisfying part of my job is when I see the potential and usefulness of what I do.
My name is Claudia, I am a lecturer in Mechanical Engineering and a researcher for the INSIGNEO Institute.
Watch: Our interview with Claudia
My passion for engineering came from high school when my maths and physics teacher told me, you’re really good at this you should do engineering. It was something new for me because there wasn’t anybody in family who had done it before, so for me it really was a pioneer step. I started to study computer engineering, when I found bioengineering and biomechanics which I found more interesting and I really got excited by it.
The research that I do develops techniques and methods to measure how people move in different contexts, so it can be inside their house, outdoors or inside the hospital. Of course what we look at and the way we measure it and the way we use this information after depends on the final application of it. I use this to use engineering techniques to improve the way rehabilitation is performed, to help patients to recover their motor functions and their ability to walk and lead their normal life.
Two things we normally do in engineering is measure things and model them, the type of research I do here at Sheffield merges these two actions together and produces a model of the musculoskeletal system that we use for clinical applications. What we do is put the information that we get from our motion capture lab together with the measurements taken inside the hospitals such as the imaging of a subject and we merge this data in order to build our model that will eventually be used by clinicians to predict the effect of an intervention or the progression of a pathology. I think that this is the most challenging but fun part of my job when I see the potential and usefulness of what I do and the type of engineering that I do.