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Dr Faizan Ahmad BEng (Hons), Dip Professional Studies, PhD, CEng, MIMechE

Dr Faizan Ahmad

BEng (Hons), Dip Professional Studies, PhD, CEng, MIMechE

Research Associate

School of Engineering

Email
ahmadf7@cardiff.ac.uk
Campuses
Room W/1.09, Queen's Buildings - South Building, 5 The Parade, Newport Road, Cardiff, CF24 3AA
Users
Available for postgraduate supervision

Overview

Dr Faizan Ahmad possesses experience in the multidisciplinary fields of engineering within the industry and academia.  He has worked in different roles of mechanical and biomedical engineering disciplines, with primary emphasis on the engineering, biomedical and soft tissue material mechanics.  He served as a design, stress, manufacturing, quality control and project engineer, within the aerospace, automotive, manufacturing, and quality control industries.

In academia, Dr Ahmad has focused his research and expertise on the very complex soft tissue mechanics, in particular heart tissue mechanics.  He is actively involved in clinically-focused research, with on-going Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)-a funded project investigating the effects of growth and remodelling due to ageing on cardiac biomechanics. This is the extension of his PhD research, reporting the novel biomechanical and structural data of the neonatal heart tissue for the first time in the literature.  These data used to establish the material parameters of the neonatal heart tissue via constitutive modelling, to perform neonatal cardiac computational simulations.

The overall aim of his research is to reveal the fundamentals of ageing in ventricular mechanics via biomechanical, macro-and-microstructural, and histochemical analyses.  These data will be used to developing novel growth and remodelling based constitutive models for enhanced age-dependent cardiac computational simulations.  Such simulations should prove valuable in developing novel interventions and treatments for cardiovascular diseases.

Academic collaborations:

Dr Ahmad successfully made the academic collaborations between Cardiff, Swansea, and Glasgow Universities to secure £800 K of funding from EPSRC.  The preliminary/pilot data for this grant application extracted from his PhD thesis and journal publications.

Biography

Education

PhD in Engineering, Cardiff University, UK (2014 - 2018)

  • Identify technical and conceptual challenges that limit the current understanding of soft tissues
  • Forge multi-disciplinary collaborations to identify novel and innovative methodologies to derive new and valuable experimental data
  • Design novel investigations and experimental rigs to enable focused interrogation of soft tissue biomechanical behaviour
  • Present and publish data in peer-reviewed journals and leading international conferences

BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering, University of Salford, UK (2009 - 2013)

  • 1st Class (Honours) undergraduate degree awarded
  • The major project focussed on industrial management and composite failure criteria, with important concepts relating to multi-material modelling being transferable in considering soft tissue mechanics
  • Relevant theories studied included: Solid mechanics, experimental theory and designs, data analysis, emerging technologies, hyper-elastic and viscoelastic material behaviour, statistical analysis

Diploma in Professional Studies, University of Salford, UK (2011 - 2012)

  • Evidence of a professional approach to industrial experience opportunity embedded within the degree programme

Work

Academic positions

Post-doctoral Research Associate; Medical Engineering Research Group, School of Engineering, Cardiff University, UK (2019 – Current)

  • Verify the 6 Growth & Remodelling stages selected for the porcine model spanning neonate to adulthood (with a focus on maturation), and establish the equivalent human age by performing ratiometric biomarker analysis
  • Quantify the critical microstructural parameters for constitutive modelling across the 6 Growth &Remodelling-stages, within the anterior and posterior aspect of both ventricles (i.e. fractional anisotropy; fibre rotation; fibre dispersion)
  • Quantify the biomechanical parameters critical for constitutive viscoelasticity modelling across the 6 Growth & Remodelling-stages, within the anterior and posterior aspect of both ventricles (Open-angle, biaxial, simple shear, stress relaxation)
  • Collect in vivo porcine data (p-v curve, blood pressure) to enable hypothesis-testing
  • Hypotheses-test maturation-related Growth & Remodelling laws in the porcine heart using different growth driven mechanisms (stress, strain)
  • Present and publish data in peer-reviewed journals and leading international conferences

Industrial positions

SAVIOUR ENGINEERING SERVICES LTD, Derbyshire UK – Project Engineer (2013 – 2014)

  • Water treatment and Sewage treatment pipework design
  • Industrial Pipework design, Producing BOM’s / drawings
  • Stress analysis/Flow simulation analysis
  • Design sustainability Report
  • High-level Design/Installation analysis, calculations, and factor of safety

DIRINLER DOKUM (Manufactures of BOSCH AND SIEMENS), Izmir Turkey – Design and Stress Engineer (2011 – 2012)

  • Designing of gearbox of the ship for Siemens Germany
  • Designing of gearbox of the windmill for Siemens Germany
  • Stress and deformation analysis
  • Quality control

AYMAS RECYCLING MACHINERY, Izmir Turkey– Design and Stress Engineer (2011)

  • Reverse Engineering of Recycling machine
  • Stress and Deformation Analysis
  • Quality control

ATALAN Group (AEROSPACE AND AUTOMOTIVE), Izmir Turkey– Design and Stress Engineer (2011)

  • Designing Revetec Engine Parts
  • Stress Analysis
  • Piston and Crank Shaft Analysis
  • Aircraft interior stress analysis for Turkish Airlines

International Engagement

  • Visiting scholar and Affiliate at Mississippi State University, USA

Publications

2019

2018

Growth and remodelling in the heart due to ageing

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of disability and death in the UK and worldwide. The British Heart Foundation estimate CVD causes a £19bn annual economic impact when considering the cost of premature death, lost productivity, hospital treatment and prescriptions. Normal growth and remodelling, as a consequence of ageing, is an underpinning phenomenon in all forms of CVD.  A child will have a greater capacity for homeostatic, adaptive changes in myocardial compliance and ventricular pump function as compared to an elderly individual with an aged, stiffer heart. The prevalence of acquired heart disease (e.g. coronary heart disease, which can lead to myocardial infarction), particularly in the elderly population, means that this is the dominant public health problem in our society.

Computational modelling provides a platform for forward and inverses analysis of cardiac mechanic with fluid-structure interaction (FSI) enabling the integration of multi-scalar structure-function, and fluidic, data. Combined with the ever-increasing computational power, FSI presents an emerging opportunity for investigating CVD-based, patient-specific interventions. Such personalised procedures have already delivered enhanced outcomes across other clinical specialities (e.g. Trauma & Orthopaedics). This emerging capability is being exploited to enhance CVD understanding, with examples including improved knowledge of myocardial infarction, evaluation of novel graft materials, and assessing the vulnerabilities of atherosclerotic arteries to plaque. The value of such simulations is a function of accurately representing tissue behaviour, via constitutive models; however, there are no established clinical protocols for measuring these properties in vivo, necessitating mathematical approximations. The anisotropic, hyperelastic mechanical response of normal myocardial tissue is now represented using several structure-based constitutive models. Phenomenological models derived from the Fung-based exponential constitutive framework reproduce transversely isotropic or orthotropic mechanical behaviour, motivated by knowledge of the gross microstructure and stress-strain relationships measured from excised myocardium.  Other sophisticated constitutive models such as Ogden, Holzapfel and Gasser include 2D and 3D fibre dispersion, fibre dispersion with rotational symmetry, and non-symmetric fibre dispersion. Some of these laws have been extended to consider growth and remodelling (G&R) phenomenologically, to provide a measure of age-specific behaviour (critical for patient-specific simulation). The development of new G&R viscoelastic constitutive models to enable prediction of age-specific tissue properties is currently limited by a paucity of underlying experimental data. Generating new experimentally based G&R laws promises to enable simulation of age-specific tissue behaviour and thereby unlock a revolution in patient-specific cardiac treatment.

Dr Faizan Ahmad research is focussing on generating these age-specific experimental data, via biomechanical, macro-and -microstructural, histochemical analyses.  These novel data will enable the development of sophisticated age-dependent constitutive models, based on the adaptive G & R that occurred through neonatal to adulthood.  Such models will accurately simulate the heart tissue at a specific age, which should prove valuable to other researchers, bioengineers, and clinicians to develop novel interventions and treatments for CVD.

Projects

Growth and remodelling in the porcine heart – pushing mathematics through experiments (EPSRC) May 2019 - Current