School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Paul Watson

Electrical & Electronic Team Leader



A professional chartered Control & Instrumentation engineer (IET) with 25 years experience in electronics and software design, working with local SMEs (Small to Medium Enterprises) and academic organisations in the development of commercial products. Previous roles include technical lead on research projects involving: ECAD (Electronic Computer Aided Design) tools, 3D computer graphics, Internet technologies, sustainable engineering product design and wildlife monitoring. In recent years I have worked for the SWAN sustainable energy group and the SAgE faculty quantifying research impact on the Research Excellence framework.

Roles and Responsibilities 

I manage the daily operation of the electronics, mechatronics and 3D printing labs and provide technical assistance to questions arising from academic staff and students, equipment, re-stocking and purchasing necessary components and equipment to support research and UG/PG teaching projects. I provide specialist expertise on control and instrumentation problems and embedded software projects involving the Arduino microcontroller. I provide technical guidance to lab technicians on complex engineering problems, maintaining the laboratory to reflect advances in relevant equipment and products/applications for potential projects. I also manage and support the running of the electronics lab and technicians in the Bedson Building (School of Natural Sciences).

A major part of my role is also supporting Stage 3, Stage 4 and MSc student practical projects involving autonomous car design, medical test rigs, wind turbine testing etc. Other department duties include test rig construction and support on the Formula Student car project involving electronics/software/control systems.

I support the Design For Industry (DFI) practical student projects as well as Stage 2 industrial visits to local engineering companies.


  1. BEng (Hons) Electronic Systems and Control Engineering 

  2. MSc Control Systems

  3. CEng & MIET (Institute of Engineering Technology)

  4. UKPSF FHEA (Engineering) - Fellow (Descriptor 2) level of the Higher Education Academy. 

Previous Positions 

Research Associate (Research Impact) - SAgE Faculty
Project Technical/Coordinator - StEP Group (Newcastle University)
Senior Design Engineer - RCID (Resource Centre for Innovation in Engineering Design - Newcastle University)
Test Engineer - TRW
Control Engineer - Ferodo



Research & Related Work:

2020 - Dynamites award winner - Project of the Year (Public Sector / Not for Profit) - Newcastle University "GET PPE-NCL"  Involved in coordinating the School of Engineering NHS visor 3D printing production.

2020 - Project Article 'Covid-19 3D Printed Visor Strap Production for NHS Trust at Newcastle University' accepted at Sheffield University Unimaker conference.

2017: Presented a poster and talk at Cultra Manor, Belfast to the Red Squirrels Knowledge Fair concerning my prototype for a wireless wildlife monitoring system.   

Previously managed and the technical lead on a number of research projects involving sustainable engineering, product design, 3D computer graphics and wildlife monitoring. Whilst working at the RCID (Resource Centre for Innovation in Engineering Design - Newcastle University) I was responsible for over £250,000 consultancy/research work developing engineering products for local N.E companies. 

2017 EPSRC IAA funding July 2017-18 for wildlife monitoring project, involving authorised access to trial engineering prototype on the Duke of Northumberland's Alnwick estate.

2015-16: Co-Investigator on 2 SAgE research strategic development funds for impact generation involving 'Portable Micro-Energy Harvesting Product for Renewable Energy' and 'Intelligent Low-Cost Wildlife Monitoring'

2012-2013: Managed the International research funded project 'Global Secure' between Newcastle University and a number of leading Chinese Universities. The aim was to improve and develop new sustainable and clean energy technologies (EPSRC).

2012-2013:Control systems development and technical support on the Transforming Energy Demand through Digital Innovation (TEDDI) (EPSRC). 

2011: Developed the Siemens PLC based SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) system to control a tri-generation diesel engine for the SWAN group (ERDF). 

2005-2010: Technical lead on the Web based 3D computer graphics for virtual product prototyping (HEIF-Higher Education Innovation Fund).

1996-2000: ECAD Framework: Showcasing ECAD tools to implement right-first-time simulated electronic designs.  



Awarded Fellow (Descriptor 2) level of the Higher Education Academy UKPSF in February 2017. 

I support the delivery of lab tutorials on the Arduino microcontroller for Stage 2 students Professional Skills Framework module, MSc practical projects and Stage 3/4 practical projects.

I support the Mechatronics MEC3027 module on Instrumentation and Drive Systems