UTTRI Faculty Snapshot: Professor Hugh H.T. Liu

Aviation has been my passion starting at a very early stage.”
– Hugh H.T. Liu

What aspects of transportation does your research address?
My research area is in aircraft technology. I have been working on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in recent years. In that sense, my research area connecting to transportation is from ‘air transportation’ or ‘aviation transportation’ perspective.

What other important aspects of transportation does it connect to?
Air transportation is highly integrated with ground transportation, or transportation in general. The emerging advancement of UAVs (drones) technology makes it possible to explore novel ways of transportation research and study, e.g., traffic management, autonomous transportation.

head shot of Hugh H.T. Liu

Professor Hugh H.T. Liu

How did you arrive at your area of interest?
Aviation has been my passion starting at a very early stage. I am fortunate to be able to pursue and follow my passion in profession.

What motivates you to continue research in this area?
The motivation comes from two aspects. On the one hand, I share the vision of pushing the boundary, looking for answers to the question of ‘what is tomorrow’s aviation transportation like?’ I believe innovative and transformative research will help to drive or enable the future development in the area, and technology will make a positive difference. On the other hand, by working with bright minds at the university, I am inspired by the curiosity and energy that my students bring in, and I want to push myself to do better, and I want to offer my experience and expertise to contribute to their growth.

What impact have you achieved or do you hope for?
Recently we have been focusing on intelligent traffic management using drones. With our custom built vehicles and technology, we hope autonomous UAVs can collect smart and relevant data (real-time, scope of coverage, intelligent) that is integrated into the sophisticated transportation management system, to offer better, improved traffic management. We have successfully demonstrated the capability and show strong potential by working with the City of Toronto’s traffic management team in several live event participation.

Posted May 8, 2018


Hugh H.T. Liu is Professor at the Institute for Aerospace Studies, and Director of the Centre for Aerial Robotics Research and Education.

UTTRI Faculty Snapshots is a series highlighting UTTRI associated faculty.