Professor James Taylor PhD, FIET

Professor of Control Engineering


James Taylor holds a Personal Chair in Control Engineering at Lancaster University. He is Impact Champion for the Engineering Department and Director of the Nuclear Science and Engineering Research Group. He was Deputy Head of Engineering from 2015-2018, having previously held Director of Teaching roles from 2005-2014. His interdisciplinary research on statistical modelling and control of uncertain systems in the natural sciences and engineering, involves applications spanning robotics, transport, energy, health and the environment. He supervises projects in these areas for students across a spectrum of mechanical, electronic, nuclear and chemical engineering disciplines.

Professor Taylor has been Principal investigator for seven projects funded by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, the National Nuclear Laboratory and Sellafield Ltd, with a focus on mobile robotic systems for remote handling and nuclear decommissioning. He is Co-investigator and the Lead at Lancaster University for EPSRC projects EP/M015637/1 Adaptive (Medical) Treatment and Robust Control and EP/R02572X/1 National Centre for Nuclear Robotics. He was Co-investigator for EP/N017749/1 Technology development to evaluate dose rate distribution in PCV and to search for fuel debris submerged in water and BB/M004260/1 Developing an automated microphenotyping platform to unlock the potential of chemical biology in plants. Earlier in his career, he was Principal investigator for GR/R94442/01 Control of nonlinear systems identified using scheduled, adaptive and state dependent parameter models.

He is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET), a member of the IET Academic Accreditation Committee and from 2017-2020 chaired the IET Control & Automation Network. He is the external examiner for MEng Integrated Mechanical & Electrical Engineering at Bath University, and has previously held program examiner roles at Coventry University and Loughborough University. He sits on the Editorial Boards for two Elsevier Journals, Environmental Modelling & Software and Progress in Nuclear Energy. He is an elected member of the UK Automatic Control Council (UKACC) Executive Committee; and is a member of four International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) Technical Committees.

He is the author of over 150 peer reviewed Journal and International Conference articles. His co-authored book on True Digital Control: Statistical Modelling and Non-Minimal State Space Design was published by Wiley. He co-develops the CAPTAIN Toolbox for system identification, time series analysis, forecasting and control. The toolbox is used worldwide in disciplines as diverse as e.g. hydrological modelling, electricity demand forecasting and the study of infectious diseases.

Professor Taylor first arrived at Lancaster University as an undergraduate student in 1989, graduating with BSc (Hons) and PhD degrees in Environmental Science, the latter supervised by Professor Peter Young and Dr Arun Chotai. He was Research Associate in Environmental Science for six years, before moving to the Engineering Department in 2000.

Professor Taylor's personal web page has more information about the above, including links to download the CAPTAIN Toolbox.

Selected Publications

Heuristic algorithm based optimal power flow model incorporating stochastic renewable energy sources
Khan, I.U., Javaid, N., Akurugoda Gamage, K., Taylor, C.J., Baig, S., Ma, X. 14/08/2020 In: IEEE Access. 8, p. 148622-148643. 22 p.
Journal article

Adaptive treatment and robust control
Clairon, Q., Henderson, R., Young, N., Wilson, E., Taylor, C.J. 6/04/2020 In: Biometrics. 14 p.
Journal article

Robust and adaptive anticoagulant control
Avery, P., Clairon, Q., Henderson, R., Taylor, C.J., Wilson, E. 1/06/2020 In: Journal of the Royal Statistical Society: Series C (Applied Statistics). 69, 3, p. 503-524. 22 p.
Journal article

A review of ground-based robotic systems for the characterization of nuclear environments
Tsitsimpelis, I., Taylor, C.J., Lennox, B., Joyce, M.J. 1/03/2019 In: Progress in Nuclear Energy. 111, p. 109-124. 16 p.
Journal article

Dealing with observational data in control
Wilson, E.D., Clairon, Q., Henderson, R., Taylor, C.J. 29/05/2018 In: Annual Reviews in Control. 46, p. 94-106. 13 p.
Journal article

The Microphenotron: a robotic miniaturized plant phenotyping platform with diverse applications in chemical biology
Burrell, T.I., Fozard, S., Holroyd, G.H., French, A.P., Pound, M.P., Bigley, C., Taylor, C.J., Forde, B.G. 1/03/2017 In: Plant Methods. 13, 20 p.
Journal article

Development of a grow-cell test facility for research into sustainable controlled-environment agriculture
Tsitsimpelis, I., Wolfenden, I., Taylor, C.J. 10/2016 In: Biosystems Engineering. 150, p. 40-53. 14 p.
Journal article

  • Doctorate Centre in Nuclear Engineering
  • DSI - Foundations
  • Energy Lancaster
  • Lancaster Intelligent, Robotic and Autonomous Systems Centre
  • Nuclear