Dr. Stuart Smith is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the Center for Precision Metrology at UNC Charlotte and was cofounder and president of Albany Instruments Inc., NC 2000 and has been actively involved in the origination of InsituTec Inc. 2002 both of North Carolina. These companies specialize in eddy current sensing technologies and fine motion control metrology systems respectively. He started his career in 1977 when he took up a factory maintenance apprenticeship with Miles Redfern Ltd (UK), a manufacturing industry producing rubber and plastic components for the auto industry. After completing his Ph.D. degree at the University of Warwick he continued working at this institute for 6 years. In 1991 he was awarded an engineering secondment by the Royal Academy of Engineering and subsequently spent a year on sabbatical leave working at the Center for Precision Metrology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. In 1992, he returned to Charlotte to take up a permanent position.
Throughout his research career his main focus has been the development of instrumentation and sensor technologies, including advanced signal processing techniques, for measurement of surface profile, micro-geometry and displacements, primarily aimed towards the challenge of atomic scale discrimination and modifications. Development of these systems has required the innovation of many high bandwidth, precision positioning and translation systems. This work has resulted in 15 patents, over 80 journal publications, 70 conference proceedings and the authorship of two books (Flexures: Elements of elastic mechanism design and Foundations of UltraPrecision Mechanism Design) the first of which remains in print after 20 years. Current interests include the integration of multi-sensing methods into precision electromechanical systems for nanometer and micrometer level assembly and creation of new instrumentation capabilities for biological and life science studies.