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Professor James Covington

Academic profile photograph

Professor James Covington

Professor in Electronic Engineering 
Associate Head of Department (Impact & Industry)

J dot A dot Covington at warwick dot ac dot uk
+44 (0) 24 7657 4494

Mobile +44 (0) 7876 877899

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James Covington (JC) is a Professor in Electronic Engineering within the School of Engineering at Warwick University.

He has spent his academic career developing chemical and biological sensors for detecting a variety of environmental pollutants and biological agents, applying a wide range of electronic and MEMS techniques in the development of these novel sensors. He setup the Biomedical Sensors Laboratory in 2010, at Warwick University to apply gas analysis techniques to the medical arena. In addition, he has been working on developing low-cost, high-volume chemical sensors for the industrial sector. He has now produced the most cost & power efficient chemical sensors commercially available today, which were licensed to AMS. He has received funding from the EU, MRC, NIHR, industry (including Sony, IBM, Roche, Denso and DSM to name a few) and many charities (including the Rosetree foundation, BROAD foundation, BDRF, Coeliac UK, Lily-May charity and BRET).

He work closely with industry, undertaking a broad spectrum of projects from basic sensor development from sensor fundamentals, instrument/instrumentation development (circuit design, firmware and software) and developing applications from environmental monitoring through to agriculture, food and drink, automotive and to the security sector. He is also the president of the International Society of Chemical Sensors (France) and is a member of both the IET (UK) and IEEE (US) and supports the creation of worldwide industrial standards in sensor. He has also been involved in numerous public events (including at the London Science Museum), TV programmes (Discovery Channel and BBC) and in the media for his work on smell.

Group website: Bio-Medical Sensors Laboratory

Research Interests

  • Artificial Olfactory Systems (Electronic Noses)
  • Development gas phase analysis sensor systems
  • Clinical investigations of gas phase bio-markers of disease
  • Application development for medical, environmental and agricultural fields
  • Low cost material and sensor development, including metal-oxides and polymers
  • CMOS compatible chemical sensors (gas phase)
  • Micro-hot plate technologies
  • Micro-fluidic devices (pumps, valves)

Teaching Interests

Recent Publications



Projects and Grants

  • Fighting Antibiotic Resistance with Point of Care Breath Analysis, Innovate UK, Project State Date 01-08-2020 for 21 months
  • Sensor development for environment monitoring, Industrial funded, Under NDA
  • Gas phase analysis applied to animal nutrition, Industrial funded, Under NDA
  • Sensor system development for agriculture, Industrial funded, Under NDA
  • infections (UTIs) in pregnancy by volatile organic compound (VOC) analysis, Wellcome Trust.
  • BRET 2 Subcontract from UHCW: FAMISHED optimisation of testing methodologies, signal and data processing and deployment of novel detection technologies Funded by: University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, Project Start Date 01-07-2012 - Project End Date 31-12-2023
  • The detection of gas phase biomarkers using Ion Mobility for clinical applications Funded by: Owlstone Medical Ltd, Project Start Date 01-10-2018 - Project End Date 31-03-2022
  • Laboratory and Material Transfer - PREDICT with Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust Funded by: Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, The, Project Start Date 07-12-2015 - Project End Date 06-12-2020
  • Non-invasive triage of symptomatic fast-track colorectal patients using volatile compounds: a feasibility study Funded by: National Institute for Health Research (DoH), Project Start Date 01-01-2019 - Project End Date 31-12-2019
  • Detection of Sepsis in Neonates from VOC Stool analysis with Emma Daulton, Funded by: VU University Medical Center, Project Start Date 10-04-2019 - Project End Date 09-10-2019