You are here: Home > About > CV


(For Steven Heddle)


Jan 2004 - present Self employed scientific, IT and business consultant.

Oct 2001 – Dec 2003 E-business adviser for Orkney Enterprise- specialist and generalist adviser to businesses and community groups, with responsibilities in promoting and implementing government IT and e-commerce initiatives.

Jul 1999 - Oct 2001 Self employed consultant based in Orkney, primarily contracted to the UK Astronomy Technology Centre at the Royal Observatory, Edinburgh. Work involved computer modelling of imaging and spectral properties of candidate radio telescope antenna configurations for the collaborative (US/Europe/Japan) Atacama Large Millimetre Array project in Chile. Provided network and IT support to local businesses.

Sep 1996 - Jul 1999 Senior Scientific Officer at Royal Observatory, Edinburgh. From September 1996-April 1998, engaged in algorithm development on project to develop a computer-based system to identify and prompt for malignancies in breast x-ray images. The project underwent a successful preclinical trial in the latter part of 1997. From April 1998-July 1999, member of Software Engineering Group, writing signal processing software for new 8m telescopes in Hawaii and Chile.

Aug 1994 - Sep 1996 Senior Development Engineer with International Metrology Systems (Scotland) Ltd. Engaged as project leader and designer on a project to design an electro-optic scanning machine that accurately determines the number of sheets of card in a stack or bundle. This machine was the subject of a patent application. Subsequently led a project to design a PC-based video measurement system, designing a PC add-in card and interface electronics, and writing its software. As project leader was responsible for planning and system design.

Nov 1992 - Aug 1994 Research Associate (latterly as Research Fellow) with Applied Optics Group, Department of Physics and Astronomy, The University of Edinburgh, on EC funded collaborative project between university and international industrial partners to design and build a car-mounted optical correlator for recognition of road signs.

Sep 1987 - Sep 1988 Technologist with Safety Glass Technology Group of Pilkington Glass Limited, Pilkington Technology Centre, Lathom nr. Ormskirk, Lancs., developing new and improved technologies for the manufacture of safety glass products. Work involved design, metrology, simulation, experimentation, report writing, and responsibility for a technician.


1988-1993 University of Edinburgh

PhD project with Applied Optics Group entitled Optical Correlation using Pixellated Spatial Light Modulators. The title refers to pattern recognition operations on 2-D images, carried out optically using reconfigurable liquid-crystal based optoelectronic devices. This involved building the (custom) devices and their electronic drive circuitry, carrying out computational simulations and calculating the analytic solutions of optical transfer functions. The project introduces and implements an idea which allows troublesome aliasing in the output of the optical processor to be reduced, or at best, eliminated, by means of randomly displacing the pixel centres according to a carefully chosen statistical distribution. The degree of PhD was awarded in November 1993.

1983-1987 University of Aberdeen

Graduated July 1987 with First Class Honours in Physics. I also took course units in Chemistry, Maths, and Mathematical Physics, and in Maths in Second Year.
Prizes: Class Prize for first in Physics Honours year, Class Prize for Mathematics in First Year. First Class Merits for all course units taken.


1977-1983 Kirkwall Grammar School, Kirkwall, Orkney

1983 Certificate of Sixth Year Studies: Maths II(C), Maths V(C), Chemistry(B), Physics(B). SCE Higher: Technical Drawing(B).
Won a Mitchell Bursary in the Aberdeen University Bursary Competition

1982 SCE Highers: English(B), German(A), Chemistry(A), Physics(A), Mathematics(A).
Member of committee that produced the school magazine that won The Scotsman prize in that year.

1981 SCE O Grades: 7 O Grades (A's).
5th in Highlands and Islands School Bursary Competition.
1st in Orkney and Zetland Association Awards (Senior Division).

Skills and Training

Clean driving licence since 1982.
Able to program in FORTRAN, BASIC and C. Currently developing skills in C++. Adept at shell scripting and use of Unix utilities, and document formatting using LaTeX, Word or Framemaker.
Extensive experience of Unix operating systems and X-windows, and also experience of VMS. Experienced user of the Internet and WWW. Extensive experience of PCs (including building, networking and interfacing to them), and their operating systems (DOS, Windows(3.x, 9x and NT/2000) and Linux).
Experienced in the use of Matlab, Excel, Word and Orcad.
Experienced in electronic design (analogue, digital, PCBs) and the use of FPGA devices.
Summer courses in Microfabrication (at Edinburgh Microfabrication Facility, 1989), and Applied Optics (at Imperial College, London, 1990).
Three day course on ‘Building Your Own Business' at Napier University, Edinburgh, June 1993.
Three day course in Adaptive Optics at Imperial College, May 1998.
SFEDI accredited business adviser since 2002.
3 day Macromedia Dreamweaver MX2004- web developer course, February 2004
RYA level 1,2 and 4 certificates in dinghy sailing, and RYA/DoT Coastal Skipper and Yachtmaster Offshore (Shorebased course) certificate.

Interests and Representation

Orkney Islands Councillor for the Kirkwall East ward since May 2007.
Member of the Institute of Physics, and former local section committee member of the IPMS. Class representative and committee member of Student Industrial Society as an undergraduate, secretary of Highland Society and organiser of research group's football matches as a postgraduate. Past member of the Orkney Sailing Club, Kirkwall Community Council, Orkney College Management Council and Papdale Primary School Board.
I enjoy hillwalking, cycling and woodwork.
I play football and badminton, and dinghy sailing.
I enjoy listening to music, and am a keen though frustrated guitarist.

Recent Projects:

2007 Orkney Folk Festival Audience Survey and Market Research
Orkney Photographic website

Last update:
March 07. 2019 09:54:59