Dr. Theodore Lim

Profile picture of Theodore Lim in front of a bench covered in electronics
+44 (0)131 451 4353
JN G.07, Earl Mountbatten building, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, EH14 4AS
Research Profile: Heriot-Watt Research Profile

Theodore's research ranges from profiling non-conventional interfaces and applications for virtual environments and systems to engineering and manufacturing. Since 1997, he has developed automatic feature recognition algorithms, later commercialized by a world-leading CAM provider and more recently, his GPU methods for path planning was adapted commercially in metrology. His emphasis in unconventional digital tools and products for interactive content creation and knowledge fusion led to a new direction in digital manufacturing. The success of applying serious gaming data frameworks supported a 2012 KTP project on smart factories, leading to a ‘Best Paper’ award at the 2013 International ASME conference. In 2015, he jointly received the Emerald Literati Network Award for Excellence on haptics simulation, and in 2018 with Becker Sonder-Maschinenbau jointly received the Lanner industrial award on Industry 4.0 processes.


He presently leads the Digital Tools Group (DTG), covering principally digital manufacturing, digital twins, cyber-physical mixed reality environments and systems, purposeful gaming and knowledge capture. He has applied game-based digital twins in neuro-feedback training to failure-mode analysis in engineering design and manufacturing. He is also active in developing wearable technologies and digital value chain evaluation.


With over 100 international journals and conference publications, his work has gained international recognition, for example invitational talks at Harvard SPL (Boston), Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) and USLP (Mexico). He serves on the international scientific community of ASME, ACM, CAD, CIM, and IEEE. He is also on the editorial boards of the International Journal of Serious Games and the Journal of Integrated Design and Process Science. Apart from science and technology, his research also encompasses pedagogical research, which complements his academic teaching activities.